CHOP Genomic Study Reveals Role for Hypothalamus in Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Using sophisticated 3D genomic mapping and integrating with public data resulting from genome-wide association studies (GWAS), researchers at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) have found significant genetic correlations between inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and stress and depression. The researchers went on to implicate new genes involved in IBD risk that are enriched in both derived hypothalamic neurons, from a part of the brain that has a vital role in controlling stress and depression, and organoids derived from colon cells, a region more commonly studied in the context of IBD.