Gene mutation protects people from flesh-eating diseaseDecember 30th, 2009 - 1:38 pm ICT by ANI
Washington, Dec 30 (ANI): In a new study, researchers from The Methodist Hospital Research Institute in Houston have identified a genetic mutation that appears to protect people from developing flesh-eating disease called necrotizing fasciitis.
They found that inactivating this section of the gene lessens the devastating disease in humans.
“The study of genomics has opened a wealth of information on how disease develops on a molecular level,” said Dr. James Musser, co-director of The Methodist Hospital Research Institute.
“When we identify a gene mutation that has a direct effect on a disease - like we have done for the flesh-eating bacteria - this opens up doors to designing drugs that provide treatments and cures,” he added.
Necrotizing fasciitis is rare but serious. It is lethal in approximately 30 percent of those who develop it.
The most common cause is the group A Streptococcus (GAS) bacteria, the same bacteria that causes step throat.
“Single-nucleotide changes are the most common cause of natural genetic variation among members of the same species, but there is remarkably little information on how these common genetic mutations affect the infectious and damaging nature of some bacteria,” said Musser.
“It is one of these single-nucleotide mutations in the GAS genome that is associated with decreased human necrotizing fasciitis, or flesh eating disease,” he added.
The research team showed that the mutation caused a segment of the gene to “turn off,” which reduced the disease’s ability to destroy soft tissue, spread from the infection site, and cause human necrotizing fasciitis and death.
The study appears in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). (ANI)
- US woman's hands, legs consumed by flesh-eating bacteria - May 20, 2012
- Flesh-eating bacteria victim Aimee Copeland speaks for first time since her hospitalization - May 30, 2012
- Scientists complete whole-exome sequencing of skin cancer - Apr 16, 2011
- Full genetic blueprint of blood cancer offers new insights - Mar 24, 2011
- Scientists crack genetic code for form of pancreatic cancer - Jan 21, 2011
- Further research needed in disease gene studies, say scientists - Jan 26, 2010
- Flesh-eating bacteria victim Aimee Copeland finally agrees to painkillers following skin graft surgery - Jun 19, 2012
- Largest genetic study of anorexia nervosa detects common, rare variants - Nov 20, 2010
- Boffins find first common gene for congenital heart disease - May 27, 2010
- Mouse genome offers human cancer clue - Mar 24, 2011
- New method to analyse complete human genome in one go - Aug 30, 2010
- Genome code for most common form of pediatric brain cancer cracked - Dec 17, 2010
- New approach helps pinpoint genes behind common diseases - Apr 30, 2010
- New genetic variants linked to height identified - Dec 31, 2010
- Tiny molecules that protect from dangers of sex identified - Nov 15, 2010
Tags: co director, dr james, fasciitis, flesh eating bacteria, flesh eating disease, gene mutation, genetic mutation, genetic mutations, genetic variation, genome, genomics, group a streptococcus, james musser, methodist hospital, national academy of sciences, nucleotide changes, proceedings of the national academy, proceedings of the national academy of sciences, soft tissue, study researchers