A team of scientists from KFSHRC has taken a further step towards producing a new map of Pulmonary Fibrosis pathogenesis, as they were able to describe the link between an atypical form of pulmonary fibrosis and digenic mutations in the genes for calcium binding proteins.
Dr. Eid Almutairy, consultant and Member of the Research Team at the Departments of Cell Biology, Medicine department and Genetics at King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Centre in Riyadh, said that describing this linkage is unprecedented in the international medical research community. He pointed out that the team is currently carrying on research experiments to explore the possibility of treating pulmonary fibrosis using these proteins. He also indicated that it took several years to build upon and further develop this research, and that it is still an ongoing research that aims to translate the results into new methods for treating pulmonary fibrosis.
Pulmonary fibrosis is one of the leading indications for lung transplantation. The disease, which is of unknown aetiology, can be progressive, resulting in distortion of the extracellular matrix (ECM), inflammation, fibrosis and eventual death.
Dr. Almutairy stated that many research papers have been published on PF to identify its causes and treatments. He also pointed out that causes of related PF disorders are unknown, and there is still no effective treatment to improve the mortality rates of patients with PF and that lung transplant is currently the only treatment for advanced PF.
He also added that this finding is sparking new hope for scientists to pave the way for new treatments. Notably, he mentioned that KFSH&RC has submitted an application to register the scientific discovery as patent in United States of America.
This new study was published in the European Respiratory Journal, which is a monthly peer-reviewed medical journal covering respirology, and featured on the cover page of the July 2019 issue. In addition to that, the discovery news was published in other prestigious scientific journals in the field of pulmonary fibrosis.