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Diagnosing primary immunodeficiencies using whole of genome sequencing

Garvan Institute of Medical Research

  • Early-Mid Career Fellowship
Date Funded:
  • 1 February, 2017
Chief Investigator/s:
  • Dr. Cindy Ma

PIDs result from monogenic mutations in genes crucial to the functioning of an intact immune system. Currently, mutations in ~290 genes have been identified that cause PID. However, there are many more cases where the genetic lesion is unknown. This project will perform WGS on these PIDs to reveal the underlying gene mutation.

This “from bedside to bench and back” approach incorporating genomics and bioinformatics will identify novel gene mutations in PID patients and provide an explanation for disease pathogenesis. While PIDs are rare, they have played an instrumental role in pinpointing the essential and non-redundant roles of genes in the development and function of immune cells. Furthermore, some of the complications affecting PID patients are prevalent in the healthy population; for example, the incidence of thrush due to chronic fungal infections. In addition to having direct affects on clinical policy/practice ie treatment regimens for affected patients, results will be disseminated via the publication of manuscripts, presentations at national/international conferences and via media outlets through the work of the Garvan Research Foundation.