Copyright © 2018, The Oklahoman
Two Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation scientists have received $3.6 million in new grants from the National Institutes of Health. The two grants will enable OMRF’s Swapan Nath, Ph.D., and Joel Guthridge, Ph.D., to examine genes thought to play a role in lupus, a disease in which the immune system becomes unbalanced and attacks the body’s own tissues.
Lupus can result in damage to the joints, skin, kidneys, heart and lungs.
“We know lupus has a strong genetic basis, but in order to better treat the disease we have to identify the genes associated with it,” said Nath. “Understanding where and how genetic defects arise will allow scientists to develop more effective therapies specifically targeting those genes.”
A four-year grant will enable Nath and Guthridge to study the roles of a pair of genes believed to contribute to lupus onset. Nath also received a second, two-year award to look at two more genes believed important to lupus development across ethnically diverse populations.