Singapore scientists achieve Meningococcal Disease breakthrough

MeningococcalScientists at the Genome Institute of Singapore have detected some important genetic variants which confer susceptibility to Meningococcal Disease. They conducted the largest ever study of its kind which involved more than a 1000 subjects to find this path-breaking result.

The scientists of this institute, a biomedical research institute of the Agency for Science, joined hands with colleagues in the UK, The Netherlands, Austria and Spain in a genome wide association study and two replication studies which helped them to identify important genetic variants.

A total of 1,443 patients MD patients were involved in the study, the maximum number of MD patients ever taking part in similar studies till date. This breakthrough will lead towards researching further development of vaccines for MD.

The study helped in reaching the first complete convincing evidence that the susceptibility to MD, like Malaria, at least partly, is due to the human genetic variation.

The susceptibility of human genes to infectious diseases has been established earlier through the identification of mutations that protect against malaria. This has been accepted now for a much wider range of infections.