To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.
While we know that exposure to pathogenic organisms can cause disease (e.g., stomach flu), little is known about whether there is a common core set of microbes (microbiome profile) that is shared between healthy people or individuals with the same disease. We already know that changes in diet, antibiotic treatment and various conditions, including obesity, may shift our normal bacterial balance. Small studies have shown a lower diversity of the gut microbiota found in Crohn’s disease patients compared to unaffected individuals, raising questions about the possible role of commensal bacteria in disease development. Moreover, the fact that the major genes found to be associated with Crohn’s disease are involved in the processing of microbial antigens and immune response further implicate commensal bacteria in the Crohn’s disease risk.
Despite preliminary data indicating substantial differences in gut microbial content between healthy individuals of different racial and ethnic backgrounds, no studies have compared a composition of the bacteria between Ashkenazim and non-Jewish Europeans. It should not be surprising if such differences exist, given the unique dietary and lifestyle traditions observed by Jews including kosher food and a mandatory hand-washing before meals (“netilat yadaim”) that could reduce exposure to infection. Therefore, under- or overrepresented microbiota in this population may help guide future efforts in developing novel treatments targeting commensal bacteria.
The use of isolated populations in genetic research has been demonstrated to be of special value by revealing how small inter-individual differences in their human genome sequence increase the chances of detecting mutations that are disease-associated. Therefore, to help advance our understanding of complex diseases, the Ashkenazi Genomic Consortium was established. The “Ashkenome” is a new collaborative initiative seeking to identify how the unique genetic make-up of this population contributes to various conditions, including diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia, or aging. This information, along with microbiome data, can be used in future studies of more diverse populations and help lead to early diagnosis, a better means of prevention, and novel treatments for complex diseases such as Crohn’s.
Inga Peter is the Associate Professor in the Department of Genetic and Genomic Sciences at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. Her research interest is to identify variations in the human genome that can explain susceptibility to common diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and Crohn’s disease that can lead to early prevention and personalized treatment of these conditions. She graduated from Tel Aviv University and completed her training at Tufts University in Boston. She lives in Westchester County, NY with her husband and 3 sons.
About the Author: Inga Peter is the Associate Professor in the Department of Genetic and Genomic Sciences at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. Her research interest is to identify variations in the human genome that can explain susceptibility to common diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and Crohn’s disease that can lead to early prevention and personalized treatment of these conditions. She graduated from Tel Aviv University and completed her training at Tufts University in Boston. She lives in Westchester County, NY with her husband and 3 sons.
If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.
Comments are closed.
Lester Crown, a perennial member of the Forbes 400 list since 1982 and founder of the prestigious Covenant Foundation, took the stage in Washington, D.C. before a room of high-powered dignitaries, philanthropists, and innovators.
Creativity without clarity is not sufficient for writing. I am eternally thankful to Hashem for his gift to me.
This core idea of memory is very difficult to fully comprehend; however, it is essential.
Sometimes the most powerful countermove one can make when a person is screaming is to calmly say that her behavior is not helpful and then continue interacting with the rest of the family while ignoring the enraged person.
“Two nations are in your womb, and two peoples shall divide within you.”
Divorce from a vindictive, cruel spouse can be a lifelong nightmare when there are offspring.
There were many French Jews who jumped at the chance to shed their ancient identity and assimilate.
As Rabbi Shemtov stood on the stage and looked out at the attendees, he told them that “Rather than take photos with your cellphones, take a mental photo and keep this Shabbat in your mind and take it with you throughout your life.”
Yeshiva v’Kollel Bais Moshe Chaim will be holding a grand celebration on the occasion of the institution’s 40th anniversary on Sunday evening, December 7. Alumni, students, friends and faculty of the yeshiva, also known as Talmudic University of Florida, will celebrate the achievement and vision of its founders and the spiritual guidance of its educational […]
This year marks the 80th anniversary of the influential paper published by a Mount Sinai physician, Dr. Burrill Crohn, and his colleagues that for the first time characterized a disease associated with severe inflammation of the intestine. Patients with what was later named Crohn’s disease develop diarrhea, fever, stomach pain, and often lose weight. Crohn’s is now classified as an autoimmune condition in which the immune system attacks its own healthy tissue in the gastrointestinal tract, causing chronic inflammation. It affects young individuals, and, even though it is not curable, it can be treated and controlled by medications and surgery.
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/health/broader-lessons-from-genetic-studies-of-the-ashkenazi-jewish-population/2012/08/12/
Scan this QR code to visit this page online: