Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Hidden origins of pulmonary hypertension revealed by network modeling

Date:
June 24, 2014
Source:
Brigham and Women's Hospital
Summary:
In a groundbreaking study, researchers have identified a related family of molecules believed to be a major root cause of pulmonary hypertension, a deadly vascular disease with undefined origins. This is one of the first studies to leverage advanced computational network modeling to decipher the molecular secrets of this complex human disease.

In a groundbreaking study, researchers from Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) have identified a related family of molecules believed to be a major root cause of pulmonary hypertension, a deadly vascular disease with undefined origins. This is one of the first studies to leverage advanced computational network modeling to decipher the molecular secrets of this complex human disease.

The study is published online June 24, 2014 in The Journal of Clinical Investigation.

Despite the rising number of people diagnosed with the disease worldwide, pulmonary hypertension has been a historically neglected disease. It occurs when there is increased pressure in the blood vessels of the lung, thus compromising the delivery of blood and oxygen to the body. Symptoms are debilitating and include shortness of breath and fatigue, but can progress to heart failure and death.

"Pulmonary hypertension is an example of a cardiovascular disease so complex that traditional methods of research have failed to provide adequate treatments to prevent or halt its progression," said Stephen Y. Chan, MD, PhD, BWH Divisions of Cardiovascular Medicine and Network Medicine, senior corresponding author. "We have been advancing the idea that mathematical models of this disease can be generated to perform high-volume, systematic analyses that are not feasible with standard experimentation. In doing so, we can make predictions regarding critical molecular networks that underlie the molecular origins of pulmonary hypertension that have not been possible to this point."

Chan and colleagues have focused on the study of microRNAs, which are small, non-coding nucleic acid molecules that can block production of numerous proteins in human cells with implications in health and disease. With the help of sophisticated computational analyses, the researchers developed a unique molecular model tracing the architecture interconnecting the network of genes and microRNAs associated with pulmonary hypertension.

"Historically, most computational approaches in the study of human disease gene networks go no further than theoretical predictions," said Thomas Bertero, PhD, BWH Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, lead study author. "We wanted to be sure that our predictions were truly valid in real instances of pulmonary hypertension."

Consequently, the researchers confirmed their mathematical predictions with experiments using a wide range of pre-clinical and human models. In doing so, the researchers identified the microRNA family, miR-130/301, as a master regulator of diverse target genes and additional microRNAs, ultimately orchestrating a global proliferative response in diseased blood vessels leading to pulmonary hypertension.

"This is the first microRNA family found to regulate such a diverse number of pathways specific for pulmonary hypertension, and these molecules could be very effective therapeutic targets for treating this deadly disease," said Chan. "Since all of these findings were previously missed by conventional experiments, our efforts also provide great support for using network modeling to discover the molecular origins of other complex human diseases."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Brigham and Women's Hospital. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Thomas Bertero, Yu Lu, Sofia Annis, Andrew Hale, Balkrishen Bhat, Rajan Saggar, Rajeev Saggar, W. Dean Wallace, David J. Ross, Sara O. Vargas, Brian B. Graham, Rahul Kumar, Stephen M. Black, Sohrab Fratz, Jeffrey R. Fineman, James D. West, Kathleen J. Haley, Aaron B. Waxman, B. Nelson Chau, Katherine A. Cottrill, Stephen Y. Chan. Systems-level regulation of microRNA networks by miR-130/301 promotes pulmonary hypertension. Journal of Clinical Investigation, 2014; DOI: 10.1172/JCI74773

Cite This Page:

Brigham and Women's Hospital. "Hidden origins of pulmonary hypertension revealed by network modeling." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 June 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140624172050.htm>.
Brigham and Women's Hospital. (2014, June 24). Hidden origins of pulmonary hypertension revealed by network modeling. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140624172050.htm
Brigham and Women's Hospital. "Hidden origins of pulmonary hypertension revealed by network modeling." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140624172050.htm (accessed September 16, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

EU Ministers and Experts Meet to Discuss Ebola Reponse

EU Ministers and Experts Meet to Discuss Ebola Reponse

AFP (Sep. 15, 2014) The European Commission met on Monday to coordinate aid that the EU can offer to African countries affected by the Ebola outbreak. Duration: 00:58 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Despite The Risks, Antibiotics Still Overprescribed For Kids

Despite The Risks, Antibiotics Still Overprescribed For Kids

Newsy (Sep. 15, 2014) A new study finds children are prescribed antibiotics twice as often as is necessary. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

AP (Sep. 15, 2014) The FDA is considering whether to ban devices used by the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center in Canton, Massachusetts, the only place in the country known to use electrical skin shocks as aversive conditioning for aggressive patients. (Sept. 15) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Respiratory Virus Spreads To Northeast, Now In 21 States

Respiratory Virus Spreads To Northeast, Now In 21 States

Newsy (Sep. 14, 2014) The respiratory virus Enterovirus D68, which targets children, has spread from the Midwest to 21 states. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins