SLEGEN Director John B. Harley, M.D., Ph.D., explained that the study found strong evidence of association with multiple single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in three genes: ITGAM; KIAA1542; PXK; and at SNP rs10798269, a DNA unit not found within any known gene. SNPs are chromosome locations where a single unit of DNA may vary from one person to another.
The results also showed evidence linking lupus to nine other genes. "I would have been satisfied with finding one gene. The fact that we present 13 strong candidates, supported by data that are 99% accurate is tremendous, added Harley, who heads the Arthritis & Immunology Research Program at the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation in Oklahoma City.
Researchers studied the DNA of more than 6,700 women, including individuals with lupus, their family members and control subjects. Harley said they scanned the entire genome for more than 317,000 SNPs with the goal of identifying SNPs linked to lupus. "SLEGEN's purpose is to do the genomics," Harley said. "The mechanism of the disease by which these genes cause lupus will be seized upon by scientists who are expert in those pathways to develop new strategies for prevention and therapy and reduce the burden of suffering this disease causes." Langefeld said the accomplishments made in the SLEGEN research wouldn't have been possible without the support of ALR. "We simply would not have been able to do it without them."
We are very pleased to see the findings in print and are grateful that the ALR support for SLEGEN has had such a fruitful outcome, said Joseph E. Craft, M.D., chief of rheumatology at Yale University School of Medicine and former chair of the ALR Scientific Advisory Board.
|Contact: Sam Rogers|
Alliance for Lupus Research