Extra X chromosome-linked gene explains decreased severity of viral infections in females
April 18, 2023 | Biotechnology
It is common knowledge that males experience increased severity in viral infections than females. But as to why, it remains to be a mystery until the discovery made by researchers from the University of California- Los Angeles Health Sciences. The answer lies in UTX, an X-chromosome-linked gene and epigenetic regulator that boosts the activity of natural killer (NK) cells which are specialized antiviral immune cells.
According to Mandy Cheng, study’s lead author, the UTX as a crucial determinant of sex differences in NK cells suggests that therapies involving immune responses should approach the precision medicine model. Personalized medicine allows tailoring of treatments, taking into account people’s individual differences that influence health and disease risk.
The incorporation of sex as a biological factor in treatment decisions is necessary in determining the appropriate immunotherapy design.