Celera Diagnostics Discovers Genes Associated with Alzheimer's Disease
News Dec 07, 2005
Celera Diagnostics, a joint venture between the Applied Biosystems Group and Celera Genomics Group of Applera Corporation, has announced the publication of data showing that a locus on Chromosome 10 correlates strongly with increased risk for late-onset Alzheimer's disease.
These findings will appear in the January 2006 edition of the American Journal of Human Genetics.
The Celera Diagnostics study evaluated 1,700 Alzheimer's cases and 1,700 age-matched controls.
Results demonstrated that single nucleotide polymorphisms in a gene that is homologous to the RPS3A gene were associated with Alzheimer's and implicate this gene, adjacent genes, or other functional variants in the development and progression of this disease.
The lead author of this paper was Andrew Grupe, Ph.D., Director of CNS Discovery Research at Celera Diagnostics.
"This study provides valuable insights into the genetic contribution to Alzheimer's disease," said John Hardy, Ph.D., Senior Investigator, Chief, Laboratory of Neurogenetics at the National Institute on Aging, Bethesda, MD, and a co-author on the paper.
"Large-scale studies with well-characterized samples from carefully selected patients allow us to discover genes that help us to identify those individuals predisposed to this debilitating disease."
The researchers chose gene-based SNPs with a preference for putative functional mutations as predicted in the Celera or public SNP databases with the aim of screening as many chromosome 10 genes as possible with at least one variant.
"This study is one of the first to explore the genes linked to Alzheimer's on chromosome 10, and the use of multiple sample sets with more than 3,500 samples has increased confidence in the interpretation of the data," said Thomas White, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer at Celera Diagnostics.
"These findings, coupled with those published last year around GAPD and the APPB2 gene, provide valuable insight into the etiology of Alzheimer's and hold significant promise of enabling the development of new diagnostics and targeted therapeutics."
As genome editing technologies advance toward clinical therapies, they are raising hopes of a completely new way to treat disease. However, challenges need to be addressed before potential treatments can be widely used in patients. To tackle these challenges, the National Institutes of Health has launched the Somatic Cell Genome Editing program, which has awarded multiple grants including more than $3.6 million to assess the safety of genome editing in human cells and tissues.