Navigation Links
Australian researchers identify a new disease

Researchers at the Queensland Institute of Medical Research (QIMR) and the Royal Brisbane Women's Hospital have identified a previously undiagnosed condition and successfully treated it by performing an experimental stem cell transplant.

Having spent her late teenage years in and out of hospital Katie Pulling had almost given up hope. "It was very confusing and very daunting. I kept hearing the doctors say, 'We don't know what is wrong', 'We don't know why you are so sick'," said Katie, who lives in north-eastern NSW.

With no options left Katie agreed to an experimental stem cell transplant a transplant which ultimately saved her life.

"Katie presented with a range of symptoms when she was eleven. No one could identify her condition and no treatment had been successful. She did not respond to regular treatments and she continued to get sick, often complicated by life-threatening infections," said Dr Maher Gandhi head of QIMR's Clinical Immunohaemotology Laboratory.

The key to unlocking the reason for Katie's reoccurring symptoms came when she contracted the common teenage virus that causes glandular fever. Usually most people come down with only a mild infection. However, Katie developed a full-blown version known as fulminant infectious mononucleosis (FIM).

"This is an incredibly rare, life threatening disorder characterised by fever, a massive spleen and destruction of the patient's blood cells. We realised the FIM was linked to her other reoccurring medical problems. The signals in Katie's immune system were not functioning normally. This meant her immune cells could not communicate with each other properly," said Dr Gandhi.

The only treatment was to replace her immune system.

"We contacted Dr Glen Kennedy, an expert in bone marrow stem cell transplantation at the Royal Brisbane Hospital, to see if this might offer a cure."

"The transplant was dangerous, but the results were amazing. The defect in Katie's immune cells has been fixed. To our knowledge this is the first time this disorder has been reported. We hope this will help anyone who has presented with the same symptoms and had no success with treatments," said Dr Maher Gandhi.

"Now I don't get sick. I am really not used to it and keep waiting to get sick. I am now back to full time study and loving it," said Katie, now 23 and completing a Bachelor of Business.

"I would like to thank the researchers for letting me know I was not completely alone in this fight and for shedding light on the reason for my illness. They devoted so much time and energy so I can live a normal life."

QIMR's Clinical Immunohaematology Laboratory is funded by the NHMRC, the Leukaemia Foundation of Queensland, Cancer Council of Queensland and the Queensland Smart State initiative.

The results were published in March in Clinical Infectious Diseases.


Contact: Sarah Tennant
Research Australia

Related medicine news :

1. Global Financial Innovations Conference Chooses Australian Start Up, Controlabill
2. Australian Open Winner Serena Williams Trains With Power Plate(R) Equipment
3. 2/3 of Australians unlikely to get vaccinated against swine flu
4. Researchers define traits associated with prescription drug disorders in a primary care setting
5. Researchers demonstrate that safe cigarettes are as hazardous as tobacco
6. Level of frailty predicts surgical outcomes in older patients, Johns Hopkins researchers find
7. Researchers discover new way to rescue treatment sensitivity of breast cancer cells
8. Mild-mannered metabolic helper rushes to fight invading viruses, researchers report
9. UT Southwestern researchers uncover Fragile X syndrome genes role in shaping brain
10. U of T researchers crack splicing code, solve a mystery underlying biological complexity
11. PMH cancer researchers link ovarian hormone to breast stem cells growth
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Austin residents seeking Mohs surgery services, ... Mohs Surgery and to Dr. Russell Peckham for medical and surgical dermatology. , Dr. ... skin cancer. The selective fellowship in Mohs Micrographic Surgery completed by Dr. Dorsey was ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... non-athletes recover from injury. Recently, he has implemented orthobiologic procedures as a method ... —Johnson is one of the first doctors to perform the treatment. Orthobiologics are ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... June 19, 2016 is World ... with chronic pain and the benefits of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery Center ... with Sickle Cell Disease. , Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder of the ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Diego, CA (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... with the American Cancer Society and the Road To Recovery® program to drive cancer ... to seniors and other adults to ensure the highest quality of life and ongoing ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... Grove Investment Group (TGIG), has initiated cultivation and processing operations at its production ... and Pahrump, Nevada. , Puradigm is the manufacturer of a complete system of ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... June 24, 2016 ... announced the addition of the " Global Markets ... This report focuses ... an updated review, including its applications in various applications. ... market, which includes three main industries: pharmaceutical and biotechnology, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Calif. , June 24, 2016  American Respiratory Labs (ARL), ... is now able to perform sophisticated lung assessments in patients, homes, ... , Inc. Patients are no longer limited to ... EasyOne PRO ® , ARL patients like Jeanne R. of ... in the comfort of her own home. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Belgium , June 24, 2016 ... the appointment of Dr. Edward Futcher ... Non-Executive Director, effective June 23, 2016.Dr. Futcher was ... Nominations and Governance Committees.  As a non-executive member ... independent expertise and strategic counsel to VolitionRx in ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: