Identifying the cellular perpetrator behind pulmonary hypertension
Most people likely think about blood pressure cuffs when hypertension is mentioned, but the large arteries carrying de-oxygenated blood from the heart to the lungs are also susceptible. Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a rare progressive disorder for which there is treatment but no cure. The exact cause is unknown but research points to endothelial cells lining the small blood vessels of the lung and a role in vascular remodelling. The EU-funded EMPAtHy project is studying differences in metabolic gene expression among subpopulations of endothelial cells in PAH. Comparing effects of a new metabolic therapy on patients and on these subsets of cells could provide a clue as to which cells do what when it comes to PAH.