Closing in on the cause of sarcoidosis

How long before we will know the cause of sarcoidosis? A question to Swedish professor Johan Grunewald

According to experts in the area of sarcoidosis Swedish professor Johan Grunewald is closing in on the cause of sarcoidosis. Professor Grunewald, a geneticist of Stockholm’s Karolinska Institute, was the keynote speaker during a conference about sarcoidosis in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, in October 2012.

Professor Grunewald investigates if there are similarities in genetic material from patients with comparable disease patterns. During his presentation he showed which types of sarcoidosis can be distinguished from the point of view of genetics. Gradually he is zooming in on specific genes and their relationship with the cells which play a role in the kind of inflammation characteristic of sarcoidosis.

So how long before we will know the cause of sarcoidosis? For my report in SarcoScoop, the Dutch sarcoidosis magazine, I asked this question of professor Grunewald. “This is not going to take decades,” he answered. “At the current stage of our research and with the steady progress we’re making, it is a matter of waiting until someone, maybe by conincidence, will hit on a finding which forces a breakthrough. In a manner of speaking this could possibly be in the next five years.”

This is a translation of my blog post on of December 10, 2012. Click here for the full report in Dutch on the sarcoidosis conference in Rotterdam


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