There is a growing interest in the ICGEB Member States for research into non-communicable disorders. Understanding the causes of human disease at the genetic and molecular level now enables the development of innovative therapies or preventive measures in fields of enormous importance for public health, such as cardiovascular disorders, cancer and neurodegeneration. Multiple Groups in Trieste, New Delhi and Cape Town are active in these areas.
Two Groups in Trieste operate in the field of cardiovascular disease. The Molecular Medicine Group (Giacca) aims to identify proteins and microRNAs controlling vascular and cardiac functions that might also be exploited for the therapy of cardiovascular disorders.
Two Groups in Trieste and three in New Delhi study the molecular and cellular mechanisms of the immune response to pathogens and cancer.
In Trieste, the RNA Biology Group (Baralle) has a long-standing interest in the elucidation of the molecular mechanisms that control processing of human genes and their relevance for human disease.
In Trieste the Molecular Pathology Group (Buratti) investigates aberrant pre-mRNA processing defects that lead to neurodegeneration.
Three Groups in Trieste and one in Cape Town investigate the genetic and molecular mechanisms of cancer development. In Cape Town, the Cancer Genomics Group (Zerbini) develops novel therapeutics targeting various cellular proteins that are deregulated in cancer.
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Using gene therapy approaches, the ICGEB is developing novel therapies against rare genetic diseases. A phase I clinical trial for the treatment of the Crigler Najjar Syndrome commenced in 2018, with broad clinical application expected within 5 years.