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Lung disease may be genetic, despite lack of family history
Date:5/17/2010

icantly lower than those of healthy individuals.

"Measurement of nasal nitric oxide production is easily performed, and can be an effective and noninvasive screen for identifying patients who may have abnormal ciliary function," he said. However, the screening test may also be abnormal for some patients with cystic fibrosis or acute viral respiratory infections, he added.

In patients with no known risk factors for lung disease, identifying which individuals are most likely to develop illness has posed a dilemma for physicians. Dr. Olivier said the results of this study may help researchers determine additional genetic abnormalities that could cause lung disease to develop, and may even lead to effective treatments.

"These results may lead to better understanding of predisposing genetic factors that will allow identification of at-risk individuals before the typical middle-age disease onset," he noted. "It may also allow development of preventive strategies or therapeutic interventions aimed at correcting airway clearance deficiencies."

"The next step is to focus on the identification of mutations in genes associated with ciliary dysfunction, to search for as yet unidentified novel cilia genes, and to utilize evolving technologies to better characterize genetic risks in patients with these diseases," he added.


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Contact: Keely Savoie
ksavoie@thoracic.org
212-315-8620
American Thoracic Society
Source:Eurekalert

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