Congratulations to our latest NZSG Small Research Grant Recipient

By NZ Gastro Office | Posted: Sunday July 10, 2022

Prof. Richard Gearry and team for the research project “Evaluation of faecal myeloperoxidase in response to treatment for inflammatory bowel disease

Excerpt from the abstract:

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a chronic, incurable inflammatory condition of the gut, often diagnosed between 15-35 years of age. Colonoscopy is the best way to accurately diagnose and monitor response to effective but expensive IBD treatments. Accurate non-invasive markers that predict gut inflammation could reduce the need for colonoscopy, decreasing costs and improving IBD diagnosis and treatment.

The group has investigated the biomarker myeloperoxidase (MPO) in the faeces of patients with IBD. Faecal myeloperoxidase (fMPO) is significantly associated with gut inflammation as seen on colonoscopy. Elevated fMPO also predicted a more complicated course of illness, including those needing IBD-related surgery and escalation of medications. Preliminary analyses on a small number of patients showed that fMPO reduced significantly following the initiation of IBD therapies. The group has also developed novel methods to rapidly analyse for the presence of fMPO, meaning that it would be significantly cheaper and produce more rapid results compared to currently available biomarkers such as faecal calprotectin (fCal).

This research aims to recruit individuals with active IBD who are initiating treatments with powerful IBD therapies in order to further assess whether fMPO can be used to monitor the response to IBD treatment.

NZSG Small Research Grants encourage research by members by providing a small sum for initial or small projects. The SRG can be used for equipment, operating expenses, tests or salary. Several grants (up to a maximum of $5000 per grant) are be awarded each year with selection by a subgroup of the NZSG exec.

Click here to apply and learn more