EDS Research at Mayo Clinic

Aug 6 8:00am | Samantha Campbell | @samanthacmaa

Authors: DeLisa Fairweather, PhD and Katelyn Bruno, PhD

There are many topics of research on Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS) that patients are interested in. We have requests on a regular basis to provide updates on research that we are conducting. This Blog will be used at regular intervals to share these updates. For now, we can share a research topic we are actively pursuing at Mayo Clinic Florida, related to sex differences of hypermobile EDS and Hypermobility Spectrum Disorder (HSD).

EDS is comprised of a heterogeneous group of connective tissue disorders characterized by fragile soft connective tissue and widespread distribution that manifests in the skin, ligaments, joints, blood vessels and internal organs. The sex ratio of hEDS patients would be expected to be 1:1, but in fact the disease affects females more than males with an estimated sex ratio of 9:1 women to men. Quatman et al. found that symptomatic hypermobility is more common in females after puberty.

Many inflammatory conditions like autoimmune diseases such as lupus and pain conditions like migraines are well known to occur more often in women than men. Many serum biomarkers related to inflammation and collagen/remodeling differ by sex and age. Although age is known to be an important factor in the natural history of HSD and hEDS, no studies exist that have systematically examined biomarkers found in the blood and/or comorbidities (other conditions) in HSD vs. hEDS according to sex and age.

HSD and hEDS are known to share similar clinical manifestations; however, few epidemiologic studies have compared HSD to hEDS or HSD/hEDS to other types of non-hypermobile EDS. Our research is examining these gaps in research. Findings from this study may help us better understand the development of the disease and eventually, better ways to treat it.

Gaps in existing knowledge that we plan to address:

  • Do differences exist in serum biomarkers and comorbidities between patients with HSD vs. hEDS?
  • Do sex differences exist in serum biomarkers and comorbidities between patients with HSD vs. hEDS?
  • Do sex and age differences exist in serum biomarkers and comorbidities between patients with HSD vs. hEDS using age 50 as a surrogate marker for menopause/ aging in women and men?
  • Do differences exist in serum biomarkers and comorbidities between patients with HSD/hEDS vs. other non-hypermobile forms of EDS?
  • Do sex differences exist in serum biomarkers and comorbidities between patients with HSD/hEDS vs. other non-hypermobile forms of EDS?
  • Do sex and age differences exist in serum biomarkers and comorbidities between patients with HSD/hEDS vs. other non-hypermobile forms of EDS using age 50 as a surrogate marker for menopause/ aging in women and men?

Read more about The effects of gender and pubertal status on generalized joint laxity in young athletes

 

 

 

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