"In the future, it may be possible to use a variety of therapies (possibly including gene therapy) to manipulate the expression of the CD24 molecules on cells to promote even more rapid healing. This may mean less scarring, bowel obstruction and fistulation and less chance of developing tumours resulting from persistent inflammation. As a result of this, it may also reduce the chance of needing surgery further down the line."
In the early stages of the project, the pathologists will be using cell lines in the lab to study CD24 at a cellular and molecular level to discover the mechanisms by which it operates and encourages cell migration and other associated molecules that are co-expressed.
They will then examine diseased IBD tissue to establish whether what they have observed in the lab is occurring in reality.
It is hoped the findings will lead to further clinical work to look at the possible benefits of CD24 in allowing IBD patients to more effectively manage their disease.
The CEO of NACC, Richard Driscoll, explains, "Since 1984, NACC members have raised over 4.5 million and more than 100 research awards have been made to hospitals and universities throughout the United Kingdom. This year our Medical Research Committee selected three studies to receive NACC research awards which we hope will contribute to finding improved treatments and ultimately a cure for IBD. We welcome Professor Ilyas' work on CD24 in seeking a better understanding of the gut healing process and how it may be enhanced in inflammatory bowel disease."
|Contact: Professor Mohammad Ilyas|
University of Nottingham