Biomarker Study of Pulmonary Sarcoidosis
Sarcoidosis is a granulomatous disease with unknown etiology. The lung is involved in more than 90% of patients with sarcoidosis. The incidence of sarcoidosis differs broadly throughout the world due to environmental and genetic profiles. The prevalence of sarcoidosis is estimated as 15 in 100,000 population/year in the US. However, the incidence of the disease varies based on ethnicity. It is reported as 5 in 100,000 in Caucasians and 39 in 100,000 in African-Americans.
Sarcoidosis causes inflammation in the lung and triggers a complex cascade of immunopathologic events in the affected organ. The course of the disease is benign in many patients without experiencing remarkable permanent lung damage. Pulmonary fibrosing results from a combination of the failure of appropriate clearance of damaged matrix and futile repair. Accumulation of excessive extracellular matrix around alveoli and airspace is characteristic of the end-stage of sarcoidosis.
A complex interaction of genetic and environmental factors causes the development of clinical sarcoidosis. Our knowledge about sarcoidosis and host immune interaction with an unknown agent is still very limited and the precise nature of this interaction and its functional effects has not been characterized.
Clinical biobanking can help define individual risk signatures in patients with sarcoidosis and are of great clinical value, as it may allow us to have a better definition for diagnosis, therapy, and outcome in the direction of personalized medicine.