The Hormel Institute scientists publish research that may help treat, prevent group of rare diseases

(ABC 6 News) – The Hormel Institute announced that a team of scientists have published research that could lead to new treatments and prevention of a group of rare diseases.

The Institute says Rafael Contreras-Galindo, PhD., an assistant professor and leader of the Genome Instability and Chromosome Biology research section, has published a major discovery in sclerodema – a group of rare diseases, also known as systemic sclerosis, that involve the hardening and tightening of the skin which may cause problems in the blood vessels, internal organs and digestive tract.

Dr. Contreras-Galindo’s team has shed important new light on how scar tissue forms in scleroderma, a process known as fibrosis. The research which advances understanding of how sclerodema develops and highlights an opportunity for treatment of the disease, was recently published in the research journal, Nature Communications.

“Uncovering the origins of fibrosis in scleroderma skin cells puts us closer to prevention and early treatment. This research is a breakthrough not only for scleroderma, but for other autoimmune and fibrotic diseases as well,” said Dr. Contreras-Galindo.

This research was supported by the National Scleroderma Foundation.

The full paper can be viewed, HERE.