Studying individual profiles of patients reveals genetic basis of arthritis

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In a new study, a Yale-led research team identified the mechanism of a gene that raises the risk of severe rheumatoid arthritis in susceptible individuals. The finding may lead to the development of treatment based on the genetic profiles of arthritis patients, the researchers said.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a common autoimmune disease that affects an estimated 3 million people and is most prevalent in women. The disease, which destroys cartilage in joints, can lead to severe disability.

This finding could lead to the application of MIF inhibitors, which the laboratory has developed for clinical testing in cancer and in autoimmunity, for severe rheumatoid arthritis in genetically susceptible patients. In the published study, the researchers used these drugs as well as new inhibitors to suppress the invasive effect of MIF on rheumatoid joint cells.

“It’s a precision-medicine approach to treating autoimmune disease,” [Yale professor of medicine Dr. Richard Bucala] noted. “Patients with a risk MIF genotype would be most effectively treated by such drugs.”

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original postThe promise of precision medicine for rheumatoid arthritis

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