Identification of the genes controlling meningococcal disease susceptibility and severity.

Genetic factors may also determine the severity of the disease and why some people recover without any complications whilst others cases prove to be fatal.

Scientific version
  • Researchers:
    Dr Simon Nadel, Professor Michael Levin, Professor Simon Kroll
  • Start Date:
    01 January 2004
  • Category:
    Treatment
  • Location:
    Imperial College, London, UK

There is clear evidence that genetic factors have a role in determining why some people develop meningococcal disease whilst the majority of the population will carry the bacteria in the back of their nose and throat without ever getting ill.  Genetic factors may also determine the severity of the disease and why some people recover without any complications whilst others cases prove to be fatal.  Over the past 10 years, a bank of DNA samples has been collected from people who have had meningococcal disease and using the most sophisticated methods for genetic analysis, researchers hope to identify genes determining susceptibility, severity and outcome of disease.  This project could eventually help identify which of us is most susceptible to meningococcal disease, as well as identifying targets for new treatment.