Computational and Mathematical Methods in Medicine
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 989307, 17 pages
Research Article

Understanding the Pathogenesis of Kawasaki Disease by Network and Pathway Analysis

1Department of Pediatric Cardiology, Children's Hospital of Soochow University, Suzhou 215003, China
2Center for Systems Biology, Soochow University, Suzhou 215006, China

Received 22 November 2012; Accepted 4 January 2013

Academic Editor: Guang Hu

Copyright © 2013 Yu-wen Lv et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Kawasaki disease (KD) is a complex disease, leading to the damage of multisystems. The pathogen that triggers this sophisticated disease is still unknown since it was first reported in 1967. To increase our knowledge on the effects of genes in KD, we extracted statistically significant genes so far associated with this mysterious illness from candidate gene studies and genome-wide association studies. These genes contributed to susceptibility to KD, coronary artery lesions, resistance to initial IVIG treatment, incomplete KD, and so on. Gene ontology category and pathways were analyzed for relationships among these statistically significant genes. These genes were represented in a variety of functional categories, including immune response, inflammatory response, and cellular calcium ion homeostasis. They were mainly enriched in the pathway of immune response. We further highlighted the compelling immune pathway of NF-AT signal and leukocyte interactions combined with another transcription factor NF-κB in the pathogenesis of KD. STRING analysis, a network analysis focusing on protein interactions, validated close contact between these genes and implied the importance of this pathway. This data will contribute to understanding pathogenesis of KD.