Navigation Links
LJI develops new approach to identify genes poised to respond in asthma patients
Date:7/8/2014

SAN DIEGO July 8, 2014 In a study published yesterday in the scientific journal Nature Immunology, a group at the La Jolla Institute (LJI) led by Pandurangan Vijayanand, Ph.D. identify new genes that likely contribute to asthma, a disease that currently affects over 200 million people world wide.

An organism's genetic material, also known as its genome, can be divided into small sections or 'neighborhoods.' Scientists can determine which genetic neighborhoods in a cell are active, or primed for gene production, by looking for a marker on the genome called an enhancer. An enhancer can increase the production of genes in its immediate neighborhood. The goal of the published study is to find genes whose neighborhoods are active in diseased cells, but inactive in healthy cells. Genes that are in active neighborhoods in diseased cells are likely to contribute to disease, and can potentially be targeted with drug treatments.

In order to find genetic neighborhoods that are active in asthmatic disease, the scientists in Vijayanand's group focus their experiments on memory cells, which develop abnormally in asthma patients. Memory cells are responsible for quickly responding to foreign substances called antigens that the host has been exposed to previously. Air passage inflammation, which characterizes asthma, is mediated by an overactive response to inhaled antigens by memory cells.

By applying his technique in small populations of abnormal memory cells, Vijayanand highlights 33 genetic neighborhoods that are highly active in diseased cells, but inactive in healthy cells, shifting the focus of asthma research to specific genes that are located in these neighborhoods.

Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) that are less precise, have previously identified 1,500 potential target regions associated with asthmatic disease. According to Vijayanand, these targets are too numerous to study individually, and as a result, the field has remained focused on just a few molecules for discovery of new asthma treatments. Using their approach, Vijayanand's team searched the 1,500 targets for those that have the greatest likelihood of contributing to asthmatic disease. "Our unbiased and hypothesis-free approach has revealed a staggering but manageable number of new molecules that could play a role in asthma, and thus are potentially novel therapeutic targets," said Vijayanand.

Vijayanand and his team completed the study using different amounts of cells from the blood of healthy individuals and asthmatic patients. They did so in order to determine the smallest number of cells that were required for their technique, and found that it works with as little as 10,000 cells, which is significantly less than the millions of cells required to use other methods. Vijayanand envisions using this technique in situations where access to cells is limited, such as tumor biopsy for cancer.

The frequency of asthma is rising across the developed world as well as in several large developing countries. Treatment for asthma usually includes long-term nonspecific medication, as there is no cure at present.

Vijayanand says this study provides information that can be the starting point for many avenues of research and treatment. He says, "our study provides a rich and comprehensive resource that will be useful to the scientific community, enabling investigators to conduct their own detailed studies of the functional significance of the novel genes and enhancers that we have identified."


'/>"/>

Contact: Daniel Moyer
dmoyer@liai.org
858-752-6535
La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. KAIST develops TransWall, a transparent touchable display wall
2. Exploring how the nervous system develops
3. InventHelp Inventor Develops Physical-Therapy Equipment (LAX-452)
4. Inventor and InventHelp Client Develops Convenient Foot-Care Accessory (HLW-1194)
5. InventHelp Inventor Develops Infant Urine Collection Device (OCM-592)
6. InventHelp Inventor Develops Hemorrhoid Relief Kit (HTM-3000)
7. Inventors from InventHelp Develops Improved Hot/Cold Pack (AUP-327)
8. InventHelp Inventor Develops Blood-Pressure Testing Accessory (LAX-437)
9. Inventor and InventHelp Client Develops Inconspicuous Hearing Aids (FED-1269)
10. InventHelp Inventor Develops Improved Wheelchair (CBA-2287)
11. InventHelp Inventor Develops Alternative to Steps (BGF-683)
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/26/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 , ... Pixel Film ... Pro X. , "Film editors can give their videos a whole new perspective by ... Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProSlice Levels contains over 30 ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Austin residents seeking Mohs surgery ... of Mohs Surgery and to Dr. Russell Peckham for medical and surgical dermatology. , ... for skin cancer. The selective fellowship in Mohs Micrographic Surgery completed by Dr. Dorsey ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Dr. Calvin ... injury. Recently, he has implemented orthobiologic procedures as a method for treating his ... of the first doctors to perform the treatment. Orthobiologics are substances that orthopaedic ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... June 19, 2016 is World Sickle Cell Observance Day. In ... benefits of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery Center of Marne, Michigan, has issued ... Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder of the red blood cells, which can ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Comfort Keepers® of San Diego, CA is excited to announce ... program to drive cancer patients to and from their cancer treatments. Comfort Keepers ... of life and ongoing independence. Getting to and from medical treatments is one ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... -- Research and Markets has announced ... Applications, Technologies, Forecasts" report to their offering. ... Smart Skin, Structural Health Monitoring, Composite Smart Structures, ... involves electronic and/or electrical components and circuits that ... such as vehicle bodies or conformally placed upon ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the ... Tests" report to their offering. ... The World Market for Companion Diagnostics covers the ... analysis in the report includes the following: ... Kits) by Region (N. America, EU, ROW), 2015-2020 , ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Tenn. , June 24, 2016  Arkis ... providing less invasive and more durable cerebrospinal fluid ... in funding.  The Series-A funding is led by ... Lighthouse Fund, and other private investors.  Arkis, new ... neurosurgical instrumentation and the market release of its ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: