Gene associated with rheumatoid arthritis enables new treatments

Patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) may have an ally to treat the pain of recurrent inflammation that occurs in the joints of the body.

That’s because, according to research by the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Virginia ( UVA ), a gene called ELMO1 may be closely related to RA symptoms.

The disease, which affects 1% of the world population, is characterized by pain and can cause limitation of some movements and impairment of bone structure.

And all this happens because the carrier’s organism causes the body’s joints to be affected by the defense cells themselves, and may have reflexes in other organs and systems.

To avoid this, the discovery suggests that inhibition of this causative gene (ELMO1) may cause the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis to subside.

So, the next step is to find a drug that fulfills this function.

Future drugs for rheumatoid arthritis

Research is important for the treatment of the disease, since it can be used to develop drugs that, in its action, control ELMO1.

This would be necessary because despite being a defense cell, it is related to the symptoms of arthritis.

In healthy people, white blood cells (including ELMO1) act to protect the body from threats, for example, infections.

But in rheumatoid arthritis, it is the cells of the immune system that attack the body itself.

Based on this problem, medications must act to inhibit ELMO1 and, thus, reduce symptoms.

Finally, the researchers are looking for some medication that fulfills this function, new tests can already be designed from this study.

Read more: New drug for rheumatoid arthritis is released by SUS

Blood test capable of detecting the disease

In addition to ELMO1, the researchers also found that through a blood test it is possible to know the risk that a person has of developing RA.

But this is only because the inflammation moves neutrophils, which are defense agents present in the blood.

And with that, the blood test can detect this variation, which can help doctors to diagnose a patient with the disease with greater ease and less time as well.