BME/IQ Seminar: Yun Liang, PhD, University of Michigan

Event Date/Time: 
July 10, 2017 - 9:00am
Event Location: 
Atrium, Bio Engineering Facility (775 Woodlot Dr)
Speaker: 
Yun Liang, PhD
Topic: What makes women more susceptible to autoimmune diseases

 What makes women more susceptible to autoimmune diseases


Yun Liang, Ph.D.
Research Investigator
Department of Dermatology
University of Michigan

 

Abstract

THE PROBLEM. Sexual dimorphism is the distinct difference exhibited by the two sexes of the same species. In humans, one remarkable example of sexual dimorphisms is immune regulation. Autoimmune diseases, which feature a dysfunction of the immune system in which the body attacks its own tissues, substantially affect more women than men. Overall 78% of autoimmune patients are women, and this percentage can reach 95% for specific diseases. In contrast, infectious diseases affect more men than women. This suggests that fundamental differences in immunological processes exist between males and females. Further, these differences are clinically significant, as evidenced by documented drug responses that are sex-dependent. For example, 80% of the drugs withdrawn from the US market from 1997-2000 had greater adverse effects in women. In order to address the sex-specific effect of drugs, we will need to first understand the molecular basis of sexual dimorphisms in immune regulation.

THE FINDINGS. By applying genomics, transcriptomics, cell biology, and immunology techniques, we identified a female-biased molecular signature that associates significantly with increased susceptibility to autoimmunity. In addition, we discovered VGLL3 as a regulator of this signature as well as genes whose expression is altered in multiple autoimmune diseases, including systemic lupus erythematosus, Sjögren’s Syndrome, and systemic sclerosis. This study was among the first to identify a molecular mechanism underlying sexual dimorphisms in immune regulation that is independent of sex hormones or sex chromosomes. This finding will allow us to develop novel measures for personalized, sex-specific prevention and treatment of immunological diseases.

 

Below is the Zoom information for those that are unable to attend in person:

Join from PC, Mac, iOS or Android: https://msu.zoom.us/j/956720759 
  
Or join by phone:

    +1 646 558 8656 or +1 408 638 0968 US Toll 
    Meeting ID: 956 720 759 
    International numbers available: https://msu.zoom.us/zoomconference?m=8LVwx6QePSzyqlEmbReGYfTJg-7jDSyH

Or join from a H.323/SIP room system:

    Dial: 162.255.36.11 (US West) or 162.255.37.11 (US East) 
    Meeting ID: 956 720 759 

 

Persons with disabilities have the right to request and receive reasonable accommodation. Please call the Department of Biomedical Engineering at 884-6976 at least one day prior to the seminar; requests received after this date will be met when possible.