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Autoimmune arthritis genetic link 'could improve early diagnosis'

Monday 11th July 2011
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Diagnosis of autoimmune arthritis, also known as ankylosing spondylitis, could become easier for those in hospital doctors jobs, after researchers at a number of universities established a genetic link.

A genetic mutation known as HLA-B27 and a mutation in a gene called ERAP1 were associated with a predisposition to the condition, which is notoriously difficult to diagnose in its early stages.

Researchers at the universities of Bristol, Queensland, Oxford, Texas and Toronto who carried out the study are also confident that the findings could curb the number of costly delays to treatment, owing to diagnostic issues.

The role of professionals in radiography jobs in diagnosis may also be less necessary as a result of the discovery.

University of Bristol researcher Dr David Evans explained: "Typically diagnosis consists of a combination of X-rays, patient symptoms and expensive immunological assays in the laboratory.

"What would normally cost £40-£50 could be done easily for a fraction of the price."

Written by James PuckleADNFCR-1780-ID-800618188-ADNFCR

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