• Rare gene variants found to increase vulnerability to H7N9 avian influenza infection
    An international team of researchers has found evidence that suggests people with MX1 gene variants are more susceptible to H7N9 avian influenza infections. In their paper published in the journal Science, the group describes their work involving genome sequencing samples from people known to have been infected with H7N9 along with samples from people known to be at greater risk of being infected from poultry, and what they found.
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  • Researchers unlock genetic 'treasure map' for chronic kidney disease
    Despite impacting an estimated 850 million people and being responsible for 1 in 60 deaths worldwide, few treatments are available for chronic kidney disease. Understanding the genetic variations associated with the disease represents an important step for drug development. Now, in one of the most comprehensive genome-wide association studies of its kind, researchers in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania have identified 182 genes likely responsible for kidney function—many of which can be targeted with existing drugs—and 88 genes for hypertension. Additionally, the research team has mapped the key cell types and mechanisms that are linked to disease. The findings were published Thursday in Nature Genetics.

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  • Research reveals increased risk of heart problems associated with night shift work
    People who work night shifts are at increased risk of developing an irregular and often abnormally fast heart rhythm called atrial fibrillation (AF), according to research published in the European Heart Journal.
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  • A molecular mechanism that mediates a link between fetal conditions and later health
    A study at Tampere University has identified one possible epigenetic mechanism through which the conditions at conception may affect the health of an individual in later life. The study, led by Finnish Academy Research Fellow Emma Raitoharju, shows that the family's occupational status, income level and maternal age at conception are linked to specific molecular changes in offspring up to adulthood.

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  • Disrupting and restoring expression of ASD-associated gene in mice alters sociability
    A team of researchers affiliated with multiple institutions in Boston has found that disrupting and restoring the expression of a gene associated with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in mice can alter their degree of sociability. In their paper published in the journal Nature Neuroscience, the group describes experiments they conducted with sociability in mice and why they believe their findings could have an impact on the treatment of sociability issues in autistic people.
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  • Genetic factor undermines H. pylori treatment
    Helicobacter pylori, a stomach-dwelling bacterium, is a strong risk factor for gastric cancer, peptic ulcers and other debilitating gastrointestinal disorders. Yet efforts to eradicate it using a combination of antibiotics and proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), which suppress gastric acid production, often fail.
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