Scientists Spot Genes Linked to Rosacea

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FRIDAY, March 13, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The first genetic factors associated with the skin disorder rosacea have been identified by researchers.

More than 16 million people in the United States have rosacea, an incurable skin condition that causes symptoms such as redness, visible blood vessels and pimple-like sores on the face, the researchers said.

Many people with rosacea have stinging, burning or increased sensitivity in affected areas of the skin.

For the study, researchers analyzed genetic data from more than 46,000 consenting customers of the U.S.-based genetic testing company 23andMe. More than 2,600 of those people had been diagnosed with rosacea.

The investigators identified two genetic variants strongly associated with rosacea among people of European ancestry.

However, the association seen in the study does not prove a cause-and-effect link.

The genetic variants are in or near the HLA-DRA and BTNL2 genes, which are associated with other diseases, including diabetes and celiac disease, according to Dr. Anne Lynn Chang, from the Stanford University School of Medicine in California, and colleagues.

The study was published recently in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology.

More information

The American Academy of Family Physicians has more about rosacea.