They used a sophisticated research tool that rapidly assesses expression of large numbers of proteins and found among 96 chronic sinusitis patients a profile missing in 38 healthy controls.
“We can diagnose this disease with a totally objective test that does not depend on symptoms or observations,” says Dr. Stilianos E. Kountakis, vice chair of the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery in the Medical College of Georgia School of Medicine. He is corresponding author on the study published in the March/April issue of American Journal of Rhinology.
Diagnosing this chronically irritating disease, characterized by dripping noses, sinus pressure, congestion and difficulty breathing, currently is rather subjective. Patients talk about symptoms and doctors look at their sinuses with an endoscope and probably a computerized tomography scan. “… (O)verall management of (chronic sinusitis) is still hampered by the lack of quantifiable, molecular and genetic markers to aid in screening,” researchers write.
To be classified chronic, the misery has to continue for at least 12 weeks. Causes include bacterial infections, respiratory inflammation, sinus polyps and mucosal disease. Some causes, such as polyps and asthma, have a genetic predisposition. “You may have a bacterial infections, allergies, mechanical problems,” Dr. Kountakis says. “There are numerous genes that control respiratory function. Any of these things can go wrong to predispose the patient to develop chronic sinusitis.”
Treating it isn’t much more straightforward. Surgery can help correct anatomical causes such as deviated septums or polyps. However, there are no FDA-aproved drugs specifically to treat chronic sinusitis. Instead, physicians use drugs that treat symptoms: steroid sprays for inflammation, mucus thinners, saline irrigation, etc. “It’s difficult to show drugs are effective because it’s difficult to group patients together and measure their disease,” says Dr. Kountakis.
He hopes further studies will enable both, revealing signature protein profiles for different types of chronic sinusitis as well as the degree of disease. “The bottom line is we want to group patients according to their disease rather than just the general term chronic sinusitis,” Dr. Kountakis says. “If we can find a way to classify patients, group them together based on the specific disease they have, maybe we can get better outcomes and treat patients with better efficiency.”
These objective measures should allow monitoring the effectiveness of current therapies and objectively reviewing new ones, he says.
In fact, even getting a handle on disease incidence is tough. The National Health Interview Survey, based on self-reports, says 14 to 16 percent of people in the United States have chronic sinusitis. A population-based study of the Olmsted County, Minnesota published in 2004 in Archives of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery put the incidence at 2 percent.
For this study, researchers analyzed protein expression in the blood using surface enhanced laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass spectroscopy or SELDI-TOF-MS. The test is about 88 percent accurate.
Co-authors include Drs. Adam M. Becker, Subinoy Das, Zhongsheng Xia; Zhongmin Liu and Bao-Ling Adam.
Toni Baker | EurekAlert!
Team discovers how bacteria exploit a chink in the body's armor
20.01.2017 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Rabies viruses reveal wiring in transparent brains
19.01.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...
Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...
Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.
While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...
Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales
Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...
Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.
As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...
19.01.2017 | Event News
10.01.2017 | Event News
09.01.2017 | Event News
23.01.2017 | Life Sciences
23.01.2017 | Materials Sciences
20.01.2017 | Awards Funding