Hey Dracula, Want To Read About Blood?

Blood is the one relationship we can never end. If you and blood decide to call it quits and go your separate ways here and now, you definitely wouldn’t make it that far. Yet again, if blood decides to band together and have platelets stick together as well, you’re still a deadman. There’s a fine line that you and blood have that keeps you alive and well; yet there are forces at work that try and prevent that from continuing. We’ve all heard of hemophilia at some point in our lives most likely. For those who haven’t, it’s a disease that prevents your blood from clotting due a missing clotting factor. But what if I told you hemophilia isn’t the only blood clotting disorder out there? That’s right! Von Willebrand Disease, VWD for short, is one of the most common blood clotting disorders around. It’s not as deadly as hemophilia, but it is present in the world. It revolves around the presence of a protein known as the von Willebrand Factor, which is responsible for aiding in blood clotting at wounds.

There is so much research about VWD out there, so it would be a wise idea to consolidate all that information. That’s why, coming to a blog near you, the Capstone Project you’ve all be waiting for: the VWD Exclusive! This project will consist of all the need-to-know things about this disease. What does that include you may ask? Well let me give you a little bit of a sneak preview:

First thing we will have is the history of VWD and the major protein involved called von Willebrand Factor. From here on out let’s call it VWF. Before seeing where something is going, it is often important to know where it has been. This does not exclude diseases. With the history theme of the project, you will be able to see how VWF works under normal conditions and the different roles in the body. Then it will expand to what goes wrong with VWF that leads to VWD. For example, did you know there are four types of VWD out there in the world and those four types can be divided into four subtypes? Well the history section will be able to enlighten you all about that little fun fact. Though there are four types, the project will be focused on Type 1 of VWD.  The goals of having this history portion is to help people understand what this disease actually is. There is so much terminology thrown about in the endless world of science research. This will help you gain a thorough understanding of what VWD is in a more understandable way.

The next theme will be the genetics of the disease. As mentioned before, there are four types of VWD. One of the main ways scientists are able to tell the difference between the various types is the genetic code associated with each type. Patients who are believed to have the disease are brought in and examined for what symptoms they may be displaying. Body samples can then be taken and the genetic sequences can further be analyzed. Certain types of VWD carry certain genetic differences that act as a red flag for that type. Patients with type 1 VWD have been found to have certain mutations in the VWF gene. This section flushes what exactly those mutations are and what it can lead to. Sometimes those mutations can even be linked with different characteristics of the disease. The genetics theme gives a look of what’s going on under the genetic hood.

The pathology of the gene will be another important theme of the project. It is one thing to know what mutations are associated with the disease, but it is a completely different ballgame to know what the mutations actually cause and what the disease actually does to the patient. In this section we will channel our inner Magic School Bus and take a look at what is happening on the molecular and cellular levels of those who are afflicted with type 1 VWD. Here the mechanisms of the disease will be covered so you can have a sense of what is actually happening.

The final theme is all about the clinical aspect of type 1 VWD. Doctors make it habit of trying to help their patients overcome whatever ailment is plaguing them. In order to do so, everything about that ailment has to be known so a proper treatment can be established. For type 1 VWD, that means understanding what mechanisms are occurring in the body, and what might be an effective way to combat it. There are certain discrepancies about what type 1 VWD actually is and the proper way to treat it. The clinical theme will be devoted to explaining the literature and apply to the treatment of the disease.

There are several important areas when it comes to understanding a disease as complex as type 1 VWD, but this Capstone Project will attempt to make it all understandable in a coherent way. We first go through the history of how type 1 VWD even came to be. Then the genetic component will be teased apart before showing what physically happening in the patient with the disease. Finally we will then look at what strides are being taken to handle type 1 VWD. As important certain findings may be in the scientific community, it can be quite useless if it doesn’t make its way for non-scientists to know what is going on. Enlightenment of the masses should always be a goal, and communication is the best way to do it. This Capstone Project is an attempt to make that goal a reality.

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