Étudiante-chercheure étoile July 2014

Jolyane Meloche, étudiant-chercheur étoile, FRQS

Jolyane Meloche

PhD student in Experimental Medecine
Université Laval

Award-winning publication: Role for DNA damage signaling in pulmonary arterial hypertension

Published in: Circulation, 2014;129:786-797


"Pulmonary hypertension is a serious and incurable illness, and the mortality rate remains over 40% at the age of five. Our project elucidated the roles of DNA damage and the overexpression of a repair enzyme. We tested certain inhibitors and demonstrated how one of them reversed the pulmonary hypertension in our in vitro model and in two animal models of the disease. We also compared the inhibitor's therapeutic potential to current clinical treatments and showed that adding the inhibitor to the therapies considerably increased their effect. Our research therefore opens the door to new patient care options."

The project highlighted the significant roles of DNA damage and a specific enzyme in pulmonary hypertension, paving the way for future research and new treatments. The study holds great potential since the findings are based on results for human tissue and since it was shown that the overexpression of the studied enzyme is primarily limited to the lungs, thus reducing the potential side effects of the use of inhibitors. This study confirms that including the inhibitor in current treatment options has a significant beneficial effect.