Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Genomics
Scientific Community
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

World’s Largest Respiratory Genetics Study Launches on World COPD Day

Published: Thursday, November 15, 2012
Last Updated: Thursday, November 15, 2012
Bookmark and Share
Researchers funded by the Medical Research Council (MRC) are to conduct the largest ever study of the genetics relating to lung disease.

The main aims of the study will be to discover what determines an individual’s lung health and why smoking harms the lungs of some people more than others.

The scientists, from the University of Nottingham, the University of Leicester, and St George’s, University of London, hope to find out why some people are genetically more prone to suffer from lung disease, particularly chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). COPD includes conditions such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema and is the sixth most common cause of death in the UK (around 30,000 deaths per year). It affects approximately 900,000 people in the UK and costs the NHS £500m every year.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that COPD is the fourth leading cause of death worldwide (after coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease and acute respiratory infection) but it is predicted to move into third place in the near future. Wednesday 14 November is World COPD Day.

The project aims to discover the genes which affect lung function, and also those which may affect the chances of developing lung disease for both smokers and non-smokers. It will also investigate whether genes play a part in the ability, or the failure, to maintain good lung health for both smokers and non-smokers. The researchers will also be able to investigate genetic factors that may affect the likelihood of an individual becoming addicted to smoking.

The study, which is called UK BiLEVE (UK Biobank Lung Exome Variant Evaluation), will be one of the first projects to make use of UK Biobank which holds health and lifestyle information from half a million volunteers and is the world’s largest data resource of its kind.

All UK Biobank participants have already had their lung function measured and given information about their smoking habits, past and present. They have also provided blood samples which can be used to extract genetic information. In this study researchers will use the anonymous data from 50,000 of these participants to determine genetic variants associated with susceptibility to COPD. They will look at both rare and common single nucleotide polymorphisms (tiny variations in genes) in the participants’ DNA and the lung function of those who are heavy smokers and those who have never smoked.

Lead researcher and Dean of Nottingham Medical School, Professor Ian Hall, says: “We currently know very little about why there is such a wide difference in lung health even among smokers. It may have something to do with genetics so we’re extremely excited about using the unique resource of UK Biobank to test this theory. This study couldn’t be done anywhere else in the world.”
 
Professor David Lomas, Chair of the MRC Population and Systems Medicine Board, says: “We know that smoking is unhealthy for anyone but we know little about why the lungs of most smokers are seriously affected, while those of some seem to stay relatively healthy. If we knew more about the genetics that cause this variation we would be better able to direct treatments to those who are most at risk and have an increased chance of developing drugs to target this type of lung disease.”

Professor Sir Rory Collins, UK Biobank Principal Investigator, said: “We are extremely grateful to the half a million people throughout Britain who went out of their way to join UK Biobank. Their commitment will provide key insights into a wide range of illnesses that kill and cause pain and suffering. Last week we heard of plans to use UK Biobank to study dementia. This week UK Biobank helps scientists tackle a serious lung condition. UK Biobank will become a key resource to improve health in the 21st century. We are grateful to the MRC, Wellcome Trust and Department of Health for having the vision to back such an initiative.”


Further Information

Join For Free

Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 3,100+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 4,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

A Fundamental Protection Mechanism Against Formalin In Mammals is Revealed
Formaldehyde, or formalin, is well known to all of us as a common chemical used in many industrial processes and also as a preservative, remarkably we also produce formaldehyde in our bodies.
Wednesday, September 30, 2015
Redirecting the Rules of Attraction in Fruit Flies
MRC researchers have discovered a biological switch that determines which part of the fruit fly’s brain responds to pheromones, depending on whether the fruit fly is male or female.
Friday, December 20, 2013
A Gene Mutation for Excessive Alcohol Drinking Found
UK researchers have discovered a gene that regulates alcohol consumption and when faulty can cause excessive drinking.
Wednesday, November 27, 2013
£93 Million Package of Support Announced for UK’s Health Industries
Innovative business and academic projects will benefit from a new £93.2 million package of support.
Wednesday, July 31, 2013
New £23m Research Unit will use Advances in Genetics to Help Reduce Risk of Disease
Unit will exploit the latest advances in genetics to improve understanding of how changes to lifestyle or environment can reduce the risk of disease.
Monday, May 20, 2013
Gene Responsible for Increased Severity of Influenza in Chinese Populations
Researchers have found a genetic variant which explains why Chinese populations may be more vulnerable to the H1N1 form of flu, commonly known as swine flu.
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
A Phenomenal Legacy for London 2012
The Phenome Centre will use the cutting edge facilities developed for London 2012 to help develop better and more targeted treatment for patients.
Wednesday, August 01, 2012
MRC Cash Boost to Maximize Discovery of Mouse Models of Human Diseases
Medical Research Council to invest £61m over the next five years into mouse genetics research at MRC Harwell, Oxfordshire.
Monday, March 21, 2011
Polio Research Gives new Insight into Tackling Vaccine-Derived Poliovirus
Newly published research findings highlight the importance of completing polio eradication.
Friday, June 25, 2010
Scientists uncover new hereditary links to Alzheimer’s disease
Two genes which increase a person’s likelihood of developing the most common form of Alzheimer’s disease have been discovered in the largest-ever study of its kind into the illness.
Monday, October 05, 2009
Location of genetic varation is key to potential role in disease
Genetic variation is widely recognised as the key to survival and continued evolution of a species.
Friday, August 22, 2008
Scientific News
Poverty Marks a Gene, Predicting Depression
New study of high-risk teens reveals a biological pathway for depression.
World’s Largest Coral Gene Database
‘Genetic toolkit’ will help shed light on which species survive climate change.
Early Genetic Changes in Premalignant Colorectal Tissue Identified
Findings point to drivers of early cancer development, targets for cancer prevention therapies.
Scientists Find Evidence That Cancer Can Arise Changes
Researchers at Rockefeller University have found a mutation that affects the proteins that package DNA without changing the DNA itself can cause a rare form of cancer.
Modified Microalgae Converts Sunlight into Valuable Medicine
A special type of microalgae can soon produce valuable chemicals such as cancer treatment drugs and much more just by harnessing energy from the sun.
Breakthrough Approach to Breast Cancer Treatment
Scripps scientists have designed a drug candidate that decreases growth of breast cancer cells.
Loss Of Y Chromosome Increases Risk Of Alzheimer’s
Men with blood cells that do not carry the Y chromosome are at greater risk of being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. This is in addition to an increased risk of death from other causes, including many cancers. These new findings by researchers at Uppsala University could lead to a simple test to identify those at risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
A Guide to CRISPR Gene Activation
A comparison of synthetic gene-activating Cas9 proteins can help guide research and development of therapeutic approaches.
Gene That Lowers Heart Attack Risk Identified
Individuals with a rare twelve-letter deletion from a gene on chromosome 17 have significantly reduced non-HDL cholesterol levels and a 35% lower than average risk of heart disease.
Testing Non-Breast/Ovarian Cancer Genes
Researchers have found that expanding gene panel beyond breast/ovarian cancer genes in these patients does not add any clinical benefit. Instead, testing has produced more questions than answers.
Skyscraper Banner

SELECTBIO Market Reports
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
3,100+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
4,500+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FOR FREE!