This week in therapeutics

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Target/marker/pathway

Summary

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Inflammation

Asthma

Serine palmitoyltransferase (SPT)

Mouse studies suggest increasing SPT-mediated sphingolipid synthesis could help treat nonallergic asthma. SPT is a key enzyme that mediates sphingolipid synthesis. In a mouse model for asthma, myriocin inhibited Spt-mediated sphingolipid synthesis and increased airway resistance compared with vehicle. In mice, a deficiency in Spt increased airway resistance and hyperreactivity after asthma induction compared with no deficiency. Next steps could include designing therapies based on sphingolipid supplementation and evaluating them in preclinical models of nonallergic asthma.

SciBX 6(25); doi:10.1038/scibx.2013.629
Published online June 27, 2013

Patented by Weill Cornell Medical College; available for licensing

Worgall, T.S. et al. Sci. Transl. Med.; published online May 22, 2013;
doi:10.1126/scitranslmed.3005765
Contact: Stefan Worgall, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, N.Y.
e-mail:
stw2006@med.cornell.edu