New Genes found that explain Vulnerability of Women against Arthritis

Science & Technology Current Affairs November 2012. Scientists at Arthritis Research UK Epidemiology Unit found out in second week of November, 2012 about 14 new genes which cause rheumatoid arthritis

Scientists at Arthritis Research UK Epidemiology Unit found out in second week of November, 2012 about 14 new genes which cause rheumatoid arthritis. This adds to the already identified 32 genes which cause the disease. The discovery will help the scientists explore new treatments for this condition. Also, this discovery will help the scientists know why women are more susceptible to the disease than men.

According to the scientists, these genetic findings will help in dividing the patients to smaller groups with similar rheumatoid arthritis. This will further help in disease management as well as allocation of the therapies. The scientists will consider how even the minor genetic changes can alter normal biological process to cause the disease.

A study conducted by the scientists identified the genes which were specific to the X-chromosome of the females and this explains why women are 3 times more vulnerable to arthritis than men. The study will have a huge impact on developing the clinical treatments for the condition. The scientists have already found three genes which can be targeted for drugs and this leaves 43 more genes with drug development potential.

This was the first time when genetic association was established between X chromosome, which is found in the females and arthritis.

What is rheumatoid arthritis?

RA or rheumatoid arthritis is the systematic and chronic inflammatory health condition which affects various organs as well as tissues, but mainly it attacks the flexible joints. Around 1% of population of the world is suffering from RA and women are 3 times more susceptible to the condition than men. Mostly the onset of this condition is between 40-50 years. Nevertheless people can be affected by RA at any age.

Arthritis is caused because of environmental and lifestyle factors like pregnancy, smoking as well as infections but the genetic makeup of a person is also said to influence a person’s vulnerability to the disease.

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