Navigation Links
Researchers identify genes associated with lung transplant rejection

Researchers at the San Francisco VA Medical Center (SFVAMC) and the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) have identified six genes associated with lymphocytic bronchitis, which is thought to lead to obliterative bronchitis (OB), the most common cause of long-term failure of transplanted lungs.

The researchers hope their results will lead to an earlier, more sensitive, and more accurate standard test for chronic lung rejection, as well as greater understanding of the rejection process.

The study is being published in the September 2005 issue of the Journal of Heart and Lung Transplantation, currently available online.

In obliterative bronchitis, scar tissue forms in breathing passages of the transplanted lung, narrowing them and eventually making it impossible for the recipient to breathe. The exact cause is unknown, but it is believed to be related to rejection of the lung by the recipient's body.

"For lung transplant patients, the biggest barrier to long-term survival is control of rejection," says principal investigator George Caughey, MD, head of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at SFVAMC. "If we know rejection is occurring, we can adjust the patient's medication to try and prevent it. But the problem with lung transplants is that it's hard to detect chronic rejection." Currently, he says, OB is best detected through a breathing test--but by the time the disease has a perceptible impact on the patient's ability to breathe, it's often too late to treat effectively.

Caughey and his fellow researchers studied lung biopsy samples from 22 lung transplant patients, with the goal of detecting genes and gene products associated with inflammation and formation of scar tissue in breathing passages. Using a customized version of a conventional laboratory technique, they found that they were able to look at hundreds of gene products simultaneously in lung tissue samples only a few millimeters across. "That was our first ac hievement: being able to accurately measure that many genes in small samples," notes Caughey, who is also a professor of medicine at UCSF. "We succeeded way beyond our expectations."

The researchers then correlated the genetic test results with results from microscopic pathology examinations, tissue cultures, X-rays, CT scans, and breathing tests in each patient. They identified six genes that correlate with lymphocytic bronchitis, potentially opening the way to a genetic test that would identify OB before it manifests. "The beauty of this approach is that it could be applied in a regular laboratory," Caughey says.

However, he cautions, "we need to validate this data in a larger, separate set of patients to prove that these biomarker genes actually work. And we're testing that now." Currently, Caughey's research team is studying biopsy samples from more than 100 UCSF lung transplant patients, who regularly undergo biopsies as part of standard follow-up care.

Another potential benefit of the research, predicts Caughey, will be a better understanding of lung rejection at the genetic level. In turn, he believes, this could lead to the development of medications that directly target genes responsible for the scarring process in the lung, instead of anti-rejection drugs that broadly compromise the immune system, which are the major tools currently available to fight lung rejection.

Co-authors of the study were Xiang Xu, MD, PhD, Jeffrey A. Golden, MD, Gregory Dolganov, PhD, Kirk D. Jones, MD, Samantha Donnelly, PhD, and Timothy Weaver, Bsc, all of UCSF.


Source:University of California - San Francisco

Related biology news :

1. Researchers discover way to make cells in the eye sensitive to light
2. Researchers find how protein allows insects to detect and respond to pheromones
3. Researchers Uncover Key Step In Manufacture of Memory Protein
4. Researchers reveal the infectious impact of salmon farms on wild salmon
5. Researchers identify target for cancer drugs
6. Researchers discover molecule that causes secondary stroke
7. Researchers find missing genes of ancient organism
8. Researchers trace evolution to relatively simple genetic changes
9. Researchers add new tool to tumor-treatment arsenal
10. UF Researchers Map Bacterial Proteins That Cause Tooth Loss
11. VCU Researchers Identify Networks Of Genes Responding To Alcohol In The Brain
Post Your Comments:

(Date:6/22/2016)... 22, 2016  The American College of Medical Genetics and ... Magazine as one of the fastest-growing trade shows during ... the Bellagio in Las Vegas . ... of growth in each of the following categories: net square ... number of attendees. The 2015 ACMG Annual Meeting was ranked ...
(Date:6/21/2016)... Columbia , June 21, 2016 ... to the new role of principal product architect ... named the director of customer development. Both will ... chief technical officer. The moves reflect NuData,s strategic ... in response to high customer demand and customer ...
(Date:6/15/2016)... June 15, 2016 Transparency ... titled "Gesture Recognition Market by Application Market - Global Industry Analysis ... 2024". According to the report, the  global gesture recognition ... 2015 and is estimated to grow at a ... by 2024.  Increasing application of gesture ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... SAN DIEGO , June 27, 2016  Sequenom, ... company committed to enabling healthier lives through the development ... Supreme Court of the United States ... Federal courts that the claims of Sequenom,s U.S. Patent ... the patent eligibility criteria established by the Supreme Court,s ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... , June 27, 2016  Liquid Biotech ... announced the funding of a Sponsored Research Agreement ... circulating tumor cells (CTCs) from cancer patients.  The ... in CTC levels correlate with clinical outcomes in ... These data will then be employed to support ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... Researchers at the Universita Politecnica delle Marche in Ancona combed medical journal ... Their findings are the subject of a new article on the Surviving Mesothelioma website. ... the blood, lung fluid or tissue of mesothelioma patients that can help point doctors ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... SPRING, Md. , June 23, 2016 A ... collected from the crime scene to track the criminal down. ... and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses DNA ... Sound far-fetched? It,s not. The ... genome sequencing to support investigations of foodborne illnesses. Put as ...
Breaking Biology Technology: