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Two teams of scientists—one from Europe and one from the United States—have independently discovered that people with mutations in a gene called NOD2, which is involved in the body's innate immune response, have an increased risk of developing an inherited form of Crohn disease.
The investigators found that about 15% of patients with Crohn disease tested had a mutated NOD2 gene, which suggests that other susceptibility genes remain to be identified. People with one mutated copy of NOD2 had twice the normal risk of developing Crohn disease, while those with two defective genes have 20 to 40 times the risk.
Stephenson J. Crohn Disease Gene. JAMA. 2001;285(22):2847. doi:10.1001/jama.285.22.2847