Crohn’s disease is a long-term condition that causes inflammation (swelling) of the digestive system. One of the complications of Crohn’s disease is called perianal Crohn’s disease.
This is when the skin around the anus becomes inflamed and ulcerated. It can be very painful and affect the quality of life for people who have it.
Researchers at Cedars-Sinai have identified a genetic variant that increases the risk of developing perianal Crohn’s disease.
The researchers found that a genetic variant leads to a loss of protein function, which affects how the body handles bacteria.
The variant changes the DNA of a protein called Complement Factor B (CFB). This protein is important for fighting infections.
The researchers found that people with this genetic change are less effective at fighting infections, which makes them more likely to have perianal Crohn’s disease.
The research team analyzed genetic data from three groups of patients with Crohn’s disease.
The groups included a Cedars-Sinai cohort, an international genetics cohort recruited from over 20 countries, and a cohort recruited from seven academic research medical centers throughout the United States.
They found that people with the genetic variant were more likely to have perianal Crohn’s disease.
The researchers identified 10 new genetic areas and 14 known areas that were associated with perianal Crohn’s disease. They then focused on the genetic variant that affected the Complement Factor B protein.
The research team discovered that the loss of function of this protein can have a dramatic impact on the body.
The protein is important for the body to recognize bacteria as harmful and to eliminate them. When the protein does not function properly, bacteria can build up and cause perianal Crohn’s disease.
The tunnels that form between the rectum and skin can be full of bacteria that are not being eliminated.
The research suggests that targeting the alternative complement pathway may be a novel therapeutic approach for treating perianal Crohn’s disease.
The researchers are now working on identifying the function of additional genetic variants associated with perianal Crohn’s disease and other areas of unmet medical needs in inflammatory bowel diseases.
Crohn’s disease affects about 1 in every 650 people in the UK. The condition can be treated with medication, surgery or a combination of both.
There is currently no cure for Crohn’s disease, but treatments can help control the symptoms.
The discovery of the genetic variant that is associated with perianal Crohn’s disease is an important step in understanding the underlying causes of the disease.
This research could lead to new treatments that improve the quality of life for people who suffer from this condition.
How to prevent inflammatory bowel disease
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a group of chronic conditions that affect the digestive tract, including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
These conditions can cause painful inflammation, diarrhea, and other unpleasant symptoms.
While the exact causes of IBD are not yet known, there are some steps you can take to reduce your risk of developing these conditions:
Eat a healthy diet: Eating a diet that is high in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains can help reduce inflammation in the body.
On the other hand, a diet that is high in processed foods, sugary drinks, and red meat has been linked to an increased risk of IBD.
Exercise regularly: Exercise is important for maintaining overall health, and it may also help reduce the risk of IBD. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercises, such as brisk walking or cycling, most days of the week.
Don’t smoke: Smoking has been linked to an increased risk of IBD, so if you smoke, it’s important to quit. Talk to your doctor about resources that can help you quit smoking.
Manage stress: Stress can worsen symptoms of IBD, so it’s important to find ways to manage stress in your life. This may include relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing or yoga, or counseling.
Take care of your gut microbiome: The bacteria that live in your gut play an important role in your overall health, including your risk of developing IBD.
Eating a healthy diet and avoiding antibiotics unless absolutely necessary can help promote a healthy gut microbiome.
Consider genetic testing: While most cases of IBD are not caused by genetics, some people may be at higher risk due to their genes.
If you have a family history of IBD, talk to your doctor about genetic testing to see if you are at increased risk.
Talk to your doctor: If you are experiencing symptoms such as abdominal pain, diarrhea, or blood in your stool, talk to your doctor.
These symptoms could be a sign of IBD or another digestive condition, and early diagnosis and treatment is important for managing symptoms and preventing complications.
While there is no surefire way to prevent IBD, making healthy lifestyle choices and talking to your doctor about any concerns can help reduce your risk and improve your overall health.
If you care about health, please read studies about antimicrobial in toothpaste linked to inflammation and cancer in the gut, and vitamin B may help reduce inflammation.
For more information about health, please see recent studies about vitamin D deficiency linked to chronic inflammation, and tart cherry could help reduce inflammation.
The study was published in Gut.
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