Navigation Links
Research examines environmental triggers altering gene function in CFS patients
Date:2/23/2012

TORONTO, ON A University of Toronto Scarborough (UTSC) researcher is examining how environmental triggers might alter gene function in people with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. The research could lead to better insights into the disease and eventually to new treatments.

Patrick O. McGowan, professor in the department of biological sciences and director of UTSC's Laboratory for Epigenetic Neuroscience, is looking at how environmentally triggered changes to gene expression might alter immune function and stress response in ways that contribute to the disease.

McGowan's field of study is epigenetics long-term changes in gene function that do not change the underlying DNA sequence. An epigenetic change wouldn't change a gene itself, but would influence whether, when and how the gene is turned off. Epigenetic changes can be caused by environmental triggers such as infections, toxins, stress, nutrition, and even the social environment.

McGowan will conduct the study into the epigenetics of CFS with a grant from the CFIDS Association of America. As part of the grant, he will have access to the SolveCFS Biobank, a collection of biological samples from CFS patients.

CFS, also known as Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome (CFIDS), is a complex and debilitating chronic illness that affects the brain and multiple body systems. Symptoms include incapacitating fatigue and problems with concentration and short-term memory. Millions of North Americans are thought to suffer from the disease.

McGowan will look specifically at the relationship between a system called the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and immune function. The HPA axis is involved in the regulation of the stress response, and has effects on immune function and inflammation through cellular signaling mechanisms involving the steroid glucocorticoid.

McGowan's hypothesis is that there is an epigenetic mechanism in CFS that disrupts glucocorticoid signaling in white blood cells called lymphocytes. By studying tissue samples from the SolveCFS Biobank he hopes to pinpoint the mechanism.


'/>"/>

Contact: Don Campbell
dcampbell@utsc.utoronto.ca
416-208-2938
University of Toronto Scarborough
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Researchers discover how vitamin D inhibits inflammation
2. Study finds college students willing to donate genetic material to biobanks for research
3. Purdue researchers reveal role of protein mutation in Parkinsons disease
4. Engineering, geoscience faculty help lead $3 million NSF Delta research collaboration
5. UVic researchers among presenters at global science conference
6. AAAS-SFU research: Chilling climate-change related news
7. AAAS-SFU research: Linking human evolution and climate change
8. AAAS-SFU research: Controlling forest fires
9. Comments by the International Scientific Forum on Alcohol Research
10. Researchers develop better control for DNA-based computations
11. New research relationships developing due to dwindling dollars
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/16/2016)... --  EyeLock LLC , a market leader of iris-based ... IoT Center of Excellence in Austin, Texas ... embedded iris biometric applications. EyeLock,s iris authentication ... with unmatched biometric accuracy, making it the most proven ... platform uses video technology to deliver a fast and ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... India , April 28, 2016 ... Infosys (NYSE: INFY ), and Samsung SDS, a ... that will provide end customers with a more secure, ... services.      (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130122/589162 ) , ... services, but it also plays a fundamental part in enabling ...
(Date:4/19/2016)... The new GEZE SecuLogic access ... "all-in-one" system solution for all door components. It can ... door interface with integration authorization management system, and thus ... minimal dimensions of the access control and the optimum ... offer considerable freedom of design with regard to the ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital has ... Association to serve as their official health care ... Willowbrook will provide sponsorship support, athletic training services, ... coaches, volunteers, athletes and families. "We ... Association and to bring Houston Methodist quality services ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June, 23, 2016  The Biodesign Challenge ... envision new ways to harness living systems and biotechnology, ... Art (MoMA) in New York City ... 130 participating students, showcased projects at MoMA,s Celeste Bartos ... Paola Antonelli , MoMA,s senior curator of architecture and ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... STACS DNA ... Technical Leader at the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory, has joined STACS DNA as a ... STACS DNA team,” said Jocelyn Tremblay, President and COO of STACS DNA. “In further ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016  Blueprint Bio, a company dedicated to identifying, ... community, has closed its Series A funding round, according ... "We have received a commitment from Forentis Fund ... to meet our current goals," stated Matthew Nunez ... to complete validation on the current projects in our ...
Breaking Biology Technology: