Potential of genome-wide association study data to contribute to better treatments: examples from ankylosing spondylitis

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is the prototypic condition of a group of common arthritidies the spondylarthropies (SpA). SpAs are estimated to affect 1-2% of the population with 2.4 million sufferers in the USA, a higher prevalence than rheumatoid arthritis [1] . AS is the prototypic and most prevalent spondyloarthropathy and affects between 0.1-1.4% of the global population. The condition primarily affects the spine and sacroiliac joints of the pelvis, causing pain and stiffness; and eventual fusion. The average age of onset is 26, leading to significant impacts on the workforce as well as the catastrophic effects on the patients, with disease durations frequently over 20 years. It is well established that AS has two phases, an initial inflammatory phase followed by an osteoproliferative/ankylosing phase where the joint fusion is initiated and progresses.Current therapeutic approaches are based largely on control of inflammation and the current gold standard anti-TNF therapies show good efficacy in reducing inflammation and disease-associated discomfort. However there are significant side effects associated with using such powerful immunosuppressants, and inhibition of inflammation does not halt the radiographic disease progression in the joints, which results in the characteristic joint stiffness and fusion seen in advanced cases. Thus, urgent therapies are needed to both specifically target the inflammation and also limit the joint damage.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)599-601
    Number of pages3
    JournalPersonalized Medicine
    Volume8
    Issue number6
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2011

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