Glasgow academics' research paper to be published in prestigious US journal, SCIENCE

Published: 25 October 2002

Research project also receives ?1.6m funding from MRC

The 25 October issue of SCIENCE, the US equivalent of Nature, will feature an article which has been jointly submitted by the University of Glasgow and the US group of Robert Lefkowitz at Duke University in North Carolina.

The University of Glasgow's contributors are Professor Miles Houslay, G. Baillie, I. McPhee, A. McLean and M. Magiera of IBLS - Division of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

The focus of their article and the research programme that has just received the substantial funding of £1.6m from the Medical Research Council is their work on the molecular cell biology of PDE4 cAMP phosphodiesterases. It shows that PDE4 enzymes can be specifically associated with receptors that cause smooth muscle relaxation in asthma, a target for ventolin inhalers in asthma.

Interest is currently very high in this area as inhibitors of PDE4 enzymes are now being developed for treating not only asthma itself but also cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn's disease and the debilitating chronic obstructive pulmonary disease which, given its absolute connection with smokers, is a huge problem in Glasgow and West Central Scotland.

The focus of ongoing research will be in analysing human PDE4 enzymes so that novel therapeutics with no side effects can be developed.

Miles Houslay, Professor of Biochemistry, commented, ' It is great to receive this funding to further our research but equally satisfying to see our current work being recognised by such a prestigious journal.'

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First published: 25 October 2002

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