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Scientists discover breakthrough to treat inflammatory diseases

Scientists have discovered a breakthrough that could potentially lead to the development of selective HDAC inhibitors designed to treat types of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) such as ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease and other inflammatory diseases.

Mount Sinai researchers found the biological mechanisms by which a family of proteins known as histone deacetylases (HDACs) activate immune system cells linked to IBD. The team focused specifically on class IIa HDACs, which exhibit more tissue-specific functions than class I HDACs, which act more broadly.

As an aspect of their investigation, the research team found that a potent class IIa HDAC inhibitor, TMP269, influenced the differentiation of Th17 cells in a mouse model of ulcerative colitis. This discovery underscores the potential of pharmacological inhibition of class IIa HDACs as a promising therapeutic approach for addressing Th17-related inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, the study reported.

Ka Lung Cheung, PhD, Assistant Professor of Pharmacological Sciences at Icahn Mount Sinai said: “The role of class IIa HDACs in Th17 cells and inflammatory disease has been largely unexplored until now. Mechanistically, we’ve discovered that class IIa HDACs orchestrate both gene transcriptional activation and repression to steer the process of Th17 cell differentiation. This significant revelation deepens our comprehension of the previously ambiguous role of class IIa HDACs in biology and human disease.”

Senior author, Ming-Ming Zhou, PhD said: “While our study primarily examined inflammatory bowel disease, specifically colitis, we believe our findings pave the way for extensive research into advanced therapies targeting severe inflammation in various other pathologies within the human body.”

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Joanna Harvey
Joanna Harvey
Marketing and Communication Executive | Uniphar Commercial

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