NCTR Publications > NCTR Research Highlights: "NCTR Research Highlights
Current Highlight from June 24, 2011
Meta-Analysis for Biomarker Identification
Scientists from NCTR and the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) have identified a 37-gene metasignature for systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) using a pathway-based meta-analysis (statistical technique that combines results from two or more studies to improve reliability) of microarray gene-expression data from human peripheral blood mononuclear cells. This novel approach allows for analysis of gene-expression data across unrelated microarray data sets and provides a simple, intuitive solution for combining microarray data sets to identify a strong metasignature. SLE is a disease that has a significant impact on quality of life, yet is a difficult disease to diagnose and treat. The metasignature identified in this study could potentially be used for diagnostic and monitoring purposes, as well as a source for identifying potential therapeutic targets for SLE. A manuscript describing this study has recently been published in BMC Medicine2 [ http://www.biomedcentral.com/1741-7015/9/65/abstract ]3 (Volume 9: 65) and is also highlighted in a review in Genome Medicine4[ http://genomemedicine.com/content/3/5/30/abstract ]5 (Verweij and Vosslamber, 2011).
For additional information, please contact Weida Tong, Ph.D., Division of Systems Biology, FDA/NCTR.
NCTR Article Selected as Editor’s Choice
An NCTR research article titled “Accumulation of K-Ras Codon 12 Mutations in the F344 Rat Distal Colon Following Azoxymethane Exposure” was selected as the Editor’s Choice and is highlighted in the current issue of Environmental and Molecular Mutagenesis and will be highlighted on the Environmental Mutagen Society’s website. The article reported the use of allele-specific competitive blocker-PCR (ACB-PCR) to detect a rare K-Ras mutation just one week after treatment of rats with a known cancer-causing agent. This rapid detection indicates the sensitivity of ACB-PCR in measuring chemical induction of specific tumor-associated hotspot point mutations and its potential in evaluating the cancer-causing potency of chemicals.
For additional information, please contact Page McKinzie, Division of Genetic and Molecular Toxicology, FDA/NCTR.
NIEHS Director Visits NCTR—June 21, 2011
Linda S. Birnbaum, Ph.D., Director, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) and John R. Bucher, Ph.D., Associate Director, National Toxicology Program (NTP), met with the senior NCTR research staff on June 21 to foster collaborative interactions focused on regulatory science and innovation, and to exchange concepts for newer initiatives that would enhance the missions of FDA and of NIEHS. Of particular note were the potentials of the new Clinical Research Unit at NIEHS and the Bio-Imaging Facility at NCTR. NIEHS/NTP and FDA/NCTR have characterized the toxicity of nearly two dozen chemicals addressing the data gaps of concern to both agencies since inception of the Interagency Agreement in 1992.
For additional information, please contact William Slikker, Jr., Ph.D., Director, NCTR.
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