Researchers in Japan have compiled a first-of-its-kind genetic database for autoimmune and autoinflammatory diseases. This resource will allow experts to more deeply understand how immune disorders develop and plan future drug discovery projects. Scientists also hope this atlas of immune-related genome data may eventually be applied to investigations of infectious diseases like COVID-19.
“To understand diseases, a deep comprehension of the function of genetic variants is essential. With this data set, we can connect the data about changes to DNA sequence associated with a disease to genes and cell types that are important for disease pathogenesis,” said University of Tokyo Project Research Associate Mineto Ota, M.D., Ph.D., a clinical rheumatologist and expert in functional genomics. Ota is lead author of the study recently published in Cell. The project was completed with collaborators at RIKEN research institution and Chugai Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.