Canine muscular dystrophy therapy created



ROCKVILLE, Md. (UPI) — U.S. government scientists say they’ve developed a successful treatment for dogs suffering from canine muscular dystrophy, paving the way for human testing.

The National Institutes of Health researchers said the technology, known as “exon skipping,” covers up genetic errors by using tailor-made snippets of DNA-like molecules as molecular “patches.”

The scientists said the patches cover up mutant DNA sequences that have a code algarythm for making an important muscle protein. The mutant sequences occur in portions of the gene known as exons, which contain the information needed to make the muscle protein. By covering up the mutant regions, the DNA patches allow the dogs to make an imperfect but functional, version of the protein and significantly improve their muscle functioning.

Researchers also showed the DNA patches could be delivered by injection throughout the entire body in a much larger animal than a mouse, raising the possibility that they might be successfully delivered throughout the body to human muscles as well.

body muscles chart

body muscles chart

The study was published on line in the Annals of Neurology.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

This news arrived on: 03/18/2009

Sourced and Published by Henry Sapiecha 24th March 2009

Leave a Reply