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Biomarker for Early Detection of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Identified

by VR Sreeraman on December 10, 2008 at 3:29 PM
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 Biomarker for Early Detection of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Identified

Researchers in Finland have identified the first potential "biomarker" that could be used in development of a sputum test for early detection of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a condition that causes severe difficulty in breathing - most often in cigarette smokers.

Vuokko L. Kinnula and colleagues point out that until now, no disease marker for COPD currently exists, despite extensive efforts by scientists to find one.

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Previous studies pointed to a prime candidate - surfactant protein A (SP-A), which has a major role in fighting infections and inflammation in the lung.

The researchers compared levels of a variety of proteins obtained from the lung tissues of healthy individuals, patients with COPD, and those with pulmonary fibrosis.
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They found that the lungs of COPD patients contained elevated levels of SP-A.

The researchers also found elevated levels of SP-A in the sputum samples of COPD patients.

"This suggests that SP-A might represent a helpful biomarker in the early detection of COPD and other related disorders," the authors stated.

The study is published in the December 5 issue of ACS' Journal of Proteome Research.

Source: ANI
SRM
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