Variation in the gene MUC5B among patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis was associated with improved survival, according to a study published online by JAMA. The study is being released early online to coincide with its presentation at the American Thoracic Society international conference.
“Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a chronic progressive disease with a median [midpoint] survival of 3 years,” according to background information in the article. The prognosis is variable; patients may remain stable for several years, slowly lose lung function, progress in an intermittent fashion, or experience precipitous acute exacerbations. “Current prediction models of mortality in IPF, which are based on clinical and physiological parameters, have modest value in predicting which patients will progress. In addition to the potential for improving prognostic models, identifying genetic and molecular features that are associated with IPF mortality may provide insight into the underlying mechanisms of disease and inform clinical trials.”
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