Discovery of new lung cell may revolutionize cystic fibrosis drug research

Scientists have discovered a new type of cell—one that could radically change how researchers see cystic fibrosis. As part of a cellular mapping project, scientists identified a rare cell type that could affect rehydration and pH balance, which are integral to those with cystic fibrosis.

“One of the things I'm amazed about is that we could have made so much progress in cystic fibrosis research without knowing this piece of information,” said Jayaraj Rajagopal, MD, a pulmonologist and developmental biologist at Massachusetts General Hospital, in an interview with Scientific American. “That actually creates a huge amount of optimism in me, because it means that we can create a huge amount of progress without knowing everything.”

The research—published online August 1 in Naturecould be an important breakthrough in developing drug therapies for the condition that affects 70,000 people worldwide. Rajagopal said this discovery could reframe how scientists view the disease.

Read more at Scientific American at the link below: