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​Scientists Have Discovered A New Gene Associated With Sensitivity To Pain

Researchers from the University of Cambridge studied people with a rare anomaly called congenital insensitivity to pain (analgesia). Numerous episodes of self-harm often shorten the life of such people. The scientists analyzed the genes of 11 members of families who came from from Europe and Asia, in which the cases of congenital insensitivity to pain were diagnosed.

Experts found that congenital analgesia is associated with PRDM12 gene variants. Family members with congenital insensitivity to pain have inherited two copies of the variant. Participants who had only one copy of it were not diagnosed with anomalies. The researchers also noticed that people with congenital analgesia do not have specific pain receptors.

The scientists hope that their discovery will help in the development of new drugs. Insensitivity to pain is dangerous, so people with congenital analgesia needed means of treatment that will restore pain sensitivity. In addition, the identified gene may become a target for painkillers.

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MTEC 2019 (eng.-com)