Has Natural Selection Caused Inflammatory Disease?
Towfique Raj, PhD, BWH Department of Neurology, is the lead author on this study. The findings suggest that in the past these variants rose in frequency in the human population to help protect us against viruses, bacteria and other pathogens. But now in our modern world, the environment and exposure to pathogens has changed, and the genetic variants that were originally meant to protect us, now make an autoimmune reaction more likely. These results are consistent with the hygiene hypothesis in which our cleaner environment is thought to contribute to the increasing prevalence of inflammatory diseases.
This research was supported by the National Institutes of Health (RC2 GM093080, R01 NS067305 and F32 AG043267).
Full manuscript can be found at: http://www.cell.com/AJHG/abstract/S0002-9297(13)00109-2
Brigham and Women's Hospital
Source: EurekAlert!, the online, global news service operated by AAAS, the science society
Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:
Brigham and Women's Hospital. "Has Natural Selection Caused Inflammatory Disease?." Medical News Today. MediLexicon, Intl., 26 Mar. 2013. Web.
30 Mar. 2017. <http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/258134.php>
Brigham and Women's Hospital. (2013, March 26). "Has Natural Selection Caused Inflammatory Disease?." Medical News Today. Retrieved from
Please note: If no author information is provided, the source is cited instead.
Contact our news editors
For any corrections of factual information, or to contact our editorial team, please see our contact page.
Copyright Medical News Today: Excluding email/sharing services explicitly offered on this website, material published on Medical News Today may not be reproduced, or distributed without the prior written permission of Medilexicon International Ltd. Please contact us for further details.