Genetic key to lupus shows potential of personalised medicine

19 August 2014

Medical researchers have used DNA sequencing to identify a gene variant responsible for causing lupus in a young patient.

The development shows that for the first time, it is feasible for researchers to identify the individual causes of lupus in patients by using DNA sequencing, allowing doctors to target specific treatments to individual patients.

Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that affects one in 700 Australians, predominantly young and middle aged women.

Medical researchers at the Centre for Personalised Immunology, based at the John Curtin School of Medical Research (JCSMR), sequenced the genes of a young girl who suffered a stroke when she was four as a result of her lupus.

“We can now target her specific disease, and make treatments that will benefit her throughout her life,” said lead researcher Dr Julia Ellyard, (pictured), from the JCSMR.

» ABC News