Genetics and The Hispanic Paradox

Hispanic childrenDr. Celedón’s Lab was the first to identify MMP12 and TSLP as susceptibility genes for asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) phenotypes in humans. The Lab has also shown that racial ancestry partly explains marked differences in the burden of asthma and COPD between Puerto Ricans and Mexicans, what is known as the Hispanic paradox. In particular, the discovered that African ancestry is inversely related to lung function in Puerto Rican children, but that Native American ancestry is positively related to lung function and inversely related to COPD in New Mexican Hispanics and Costa Ricans.

On the basis of this work, Dr. Celedón’s Lab is now conducting National Institutes of Health-funded studies of the genetics and “omics” of airway diseases in Hispanic subgroups.