Microarray Gene Expression Profiling of IBD from Endoscopic Biopsy Tissues
This invention relates to the identification of biomarkers for ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn's disease (CD) and methods of screening. UC and CD are two highly prevalent inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs) of the Western World. Almost all IBD patients require lifelong treatments and frequently necessitate endoscopic follow up of disease activity. Although UC and CD share clinical and demographic characteristics, they harbor key differences in tissue damage and prognosis, suggesting distinctive etiopathogenic processes. JHU researchers have developed a method for determining the global gene expression pattern for UC and CD, compared to normal controls, using RNA isolated from fresh individual endoscopic pinch biopsies and oligonucleotide microarray chip assays. This method can also be used to profile affected and unaffected biopsies from the same individual. Using this approach it was possible to distinguish people with IBD from healthy individuals. Furthermore, within the IBD group, gene biomarkers were identified whose expression can distinguish CD from UC. Differential expression of these genes and biomarkers may be indicative of specific biological changes underlying tissue damage. Description (Set) Proposed Use (Set) Gene expression profiling for UC and CD will provide a means of profiling patients long before surgery in order to identify early changes in these chronic diseases, examining a larger population size as a large majority of IBD patients are examined by endoscopy, and a means of evaluating the response of patients to specific therapies over time. The identification of disease-specific biomarkers will also allow the design of affordable and more specific cDNA or oligonucleotide chips for assays. In addition, the identification of biomarkers for UC and CD may also provide drugable targets for the design of disease-specific therapeutics.
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