New genetic sequencing technology in Melbourne breast cancer research
A research team led by the University of Melbourne has found that increasing a specific protein in muscles could help treat the severe and progressive muscle wasting disease, Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD).
There is no known cure for DMD which affects young boys and causes muscle fragility, spinal curvature and premature death.
Results from the studies showed that by increasing levels of ‘heat shock protein 72’ (HSP72) in the muscles of animal models of DMD, muscle strength improved, disease progression slowed, and lifespan increased.
The team of international researchers also discovered that increasing HSP72 in muscles improved the function of a pump responsible for controlling calcium levels confirming it as a target for future therapeutic drugs for the disease.
The research was published in the international journal Nature and conducted by researchers from the University of Melbourne and Deakin University in Victoria, Australia, as well as from the University of Oxford, UK.
Melbourne’s strong culture of collaboration in a strong biotechnology sector attracts eminent researchers from around the world.