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10.09.15 Innovative study uses patient’s cells to study genetic factors in Ataxia-Telangiectasia (A-T)

last modified Oct 06, 2015 09:41 AM
Steve Jackson describes new research project probing how genetic factors might reduce the severity of A-T
10.09.15 Innovative study uses patient’s cells to study genetic factors in Ataxia-Telangiectasia (A-T)

Steve Jackson speaks to camera

Steve Jackson’s lab at the Gurdon Institute, in collaboration with Rick Livesey at the Gurdon Institute and Serena Nik-Zainal at the Sanger Institute, has just begun a research project to grow cells from a particular A-T patient to understand the genetic factors that might reduce the severity of the disease. The woman in question has the typical gene mutations that lead to this progressive degenerative disorder, yet she shows very mild symptoms. The researchers want to find out the genetic basis for this less severe presentation, as this might help in developing therapies that could similarly reduce the severity of A-T in other sufferers.

Professor Jackson describes this approach in a short video newly released by the charity funding the research, Action for A-T.  The video can be seen alongside more information on the Action for A-T website.

The A-T project and others in Cambridge were highlighted at a meeting of the Cambridge Rare Diseases Network. In this short film from Cambridge TV, Steve and other attendees describe how patients, researchers and clinicians are coming together to address these poorly understood conditions.

Studying development to understand disease

The Gurdon Institute is funded by Wellcome and Cancer Research UK to study the biology of development, and how normal growth and maintenance go wrong in cancer and other diseases.

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