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Scientists from CCMB and AIG Discovered Gene Causing Chronic Pancreatitis

Aug 19, 2013 11:52 IST

Top Picks :  Science | Technology Current Affairs , August 2013 Current Affairs , 2013 Current Affairs

Scientists from the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) and the Asian Institute of Gastroenterology (AIG) in India, together discovered a new gene-association which will help in early detection of chronic pancreatitis. The group of scientists also included some from abroad.

The scientists discovered that certain mutations in the gene known as CPA1, which make the enzyme called carboxipeptidase-A1, were linked with disease pancreatitis. It is because of these mutations that the enzymes fold falsely and the improperly folded proteins lose the activity. Additionally, the unfolded or improperly folded proteins can lead to stress in the cells. The cells, in turn, can respond to this by producing various molecules, in order to either help the proteins to fold or degrade it. The responses of cells like these can cause damage to the pancreas which in turn leads to pancreatitis.

Pancreas is the small human body organ which produces insulin in order to maintain the sugar level. Apart from this, pancreas is responsible for producing the enzymes that in turn help in food digestion. Inflammation in the pancreas (pancreatitis) leads to severe complications. It can also lead to pancreatic cancer, if left untreated.
What is chronic pancreatitis?

Chronic pancreatitis mainly refers to repeated inflammation of the pancreas.

Chronic pancreatitis can be found more prominently in South India. The primary causes of this ailment are gall stones and alcohol. The research revealed that this disease can occur because of gene mutation.

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