Features | Partner Sites | Information | LinkXpress
Sign In
JIB
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING

European-Funded Research Project Seeks Molecular Basis for Chronic Pain

By BiotechDaily International staff writers
Posted on 26 Nov 2013
A consortium of research institutions and medical centers will be participating in a four-year program funded by the European commission that aims at exploring and defining molecular mechanisms underlying chronic pain.

One out of five Europeans suffers from chronic pain, a syndrome that can induce anxiety and depression and greatly impair the quality of life. It has been estimated that treatment of chronic pain costs the European national health systems up 1.5%–3% of their gross domestic product (GDP) each year.

The recently announced six million euro "ncRNAPain" project will be a cooperative effort of 11 universities, medical centers, and research institutes in seven countries (Austria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Israel, and the United Kingdom.

The researchers, including those at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israel), will focus on pain-regulating noncoding ribonucleic acids (ncRNAs). They will be seeking to identify and validate specific ncRNAs that could serve as basis for the development of new drugs for pain prevention and relief.

Dr. Hermona Soreq, professor of molecular neuroscience at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, said, “MicroRNAs (a form of ncRNAs) are a new finding. They are only known for less than 20 years, but it is already clear that they have an important surveillance job, controlling many genes. They do that by wrapping around gene products, the RNA, and reducing their option to get translated into proteins. Furthermore, they block an entire series of genes, all involved in a pathway, so they work like general dimmers of electricity, so to speak, not blackening out but shadowing. We know about many hundreds of microRNAs, and a large part of those are unique to humans (so mouse tests will not be useful).”

“The new group is about microRNAs involved in pain—an important phenomenon which is often regarded as a symptom, whereas it should be taken more seriously as a phenomenon on its own merit and treated as such. This is especially the case in advanced ages, which also implies that its impact will increase with life expectancy prolongation,” said Dr. Soreq. “What we want to do is to combine sequencing tests in human blood cells with efforts to block excess microRNAs. There are many partners involved, including pain clinician specialists, but also basic researchers. We hope to gain new diagnostic biomarkers and find new targets for therapeutic interference.”

Related Links:

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem



comments powered by Disqus

Channels

Genomics/Proteomics

view channel
Image: Alternative splicing produces two protein isoforms (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons).

Key Regulator of Cancer-Inducing Alternative Splicing Identified

Cancer researchers have identified the splicing factor RBM4 (RNA-binding protein 4) as a key determinant in processes that prevent tumor development and spread. RBM4 is known to be crucial to gene splicing... Read more

Therapeutics

view channel
Image: Hair follicle (blue) being attacked by T cells (green) (Photo courtesy of Christiano Lab/Columbia University Medical Center).

Hair Restoration Method Clones Patients’ Cells to Grow New Hair Follicles

Researchers have developed of a new hair restoration approach that uses a patient’s cells to grow new hair follicles. In addition, the [US] Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) recently approved a new drug... Read more

Lab Technologies

view channel
Image: Leica Microsystems launches the inverted research microscope platform Leica DMi8 (Photo courtesy of Leica Microsystems).

New Inverted Microscope Designed to Readily Adapt to Changing Research Demands

A new inverted microscope for biotech and other life science laboratories was designed to readily accommodate modifications and upgrades to allow it to keep current with changing research demands and interests.... Read more

Business

view channel

Partnership Established to Decode Bowel Disease

23andMe (Mountain View, CA,USA), a personal genetics company, is collaborating with Pfizer, Inc. (New York, NY, USA), in which the companies will seek to enroll 10,000 people with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in a research project designed to explore the genetic factors associated with the onset, progression, severity,... Read more
 
Copyright © 2000-2014 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.