An international group of researchers have developed a novel method for identifying entire networks of genes and their association to disease, providing a more accurate picture of the genetic risks associated with specific diseases than single genes can provide.
Photo: linkurl:Joanna Servaes; via Wikimedia Commons
In the proof-of-concept paper published today (8th September) in __Nature__, the researchers used an integrated genomics approach to identify a network of inflammatory and anti-viral genes, present in both rats and humans, that seems to play a role in autoimmune diseases such as type 1 diabetes. "It is an important discovery," said linkurl:Constantin Polychronakos,; an endocrinologist at the McGill University Health Center who was not involved in the study. "Instead of looking at individual genes and trying to make sense out of it, they were looking at whole networks of genes." Many common diseases have an exceedingly complex genetic architecture, with a multitude of genes...
M. Heinig, et al., "A trans-acting locus regulates an anti-viral expression network and type 1 diabetes risk," Nature, doi:10.1038/nature09386, 2010

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