Tag: Genes

Genes, Not Diet, May Be Key to Gout Flare-Ups

THURSDAY, Oct. 11, 2018 — Although many people suffering from painful gout flare-ups point to diet as the culprit, new research suggests DNA plays a much bigger role. The findings challenge the long-held belief that diet is the major factor in gout, a joint disease that causes extreme pain and swelling. Gout is caused by

Genetic disease healed using genome editing

Parents of newborns may be familiar with the metabolic disorder phenylketonuria: in Switzerland, all newborn babies are screened for this genetic disease. If a baby is found to have phenylketonuria, it needs a special diet so that the amino acid phenylalanine does not accumulate in the body. Excess phenylalanine delays mental and motor development. If

Decoding the regulation of cell survival: A major step towards preventing neurons from dying

An interdisciplinary and international research group led by Dr. Volker Busskamp from the Center for Regenerative Therapies Dresden at the TU Dresden (CRTD) has decoded the regulatory impact on neuronal survival of a small non-coding RNA molecule, so-called miRNA, at the highest resolution to date. This deciphering of gene regulation primes applications for strengthening neurons

Pioneering biologists create a new crop through genome editing: From wild plant to crop: CRISPR-Cas9 revolutionizes breeding, New tomato contains more valuable antioxidants

Crops such as wheat and maize have undergone a breeding process lasting thousands of years, in the course of which  humankind has gradually modified the properties of the wild plants in order to adapt them to his needs. One motive was, and still is, higher yields. One “side effect” of this breeding has been a

Making mice a tiny bit more human to study preterm birth: Research enhances ability to study biology of persistent public health problem

Preterm birth remains a global epidemic linked to a lifetime of potential health complications. It also is difficult to study in living creatures — especially the uniquely precise biology of preterm birth in humans. Researchers report in PLoS Biology successfully inserting just enough human DNA into transgenic laboratory mice that it allowed the team to

Does our environment affect the genes in our brains?

Is there a link between differences in IQ test performance and the activity of certain genes? Researchers from Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin have shown that modifications in the structure of a specific gene have a negative impact on individual test performance. This suggests that environmentally induced epigenetic changes to our genetic material have a greater

Eight of ten people with cancer risk genes don’t know it

Genomic screening of more than 50,000 people shows that more than 80% of those who carry an identifiable genetic risk for breast, ovarian, prostate, and pancreatic cancer don’t know it despite frequent interaction with the healthcare system. The findings were published Sept. 21 in the journal JAMA Network Open. In the absence of routine screening,

New technique reveals how Zika virus interacts inside our cells: Discovery could enable development of new anti-viral therapies

Scientists have developed a new technique that can determine how viruses interact with a host’s own RNA. As well as providing insight into how viruses direct the host cell to create new virus particles, this technique, published today in Nature Methods, could allow researchers to design artificial molecules capable of blocking the virus replication process

Superbugs jumping frequently between humans and animals

The MRSA staphylococcus is an example of a pathogen, the likes of which are often called superbugs. These are resistant to most antibiotics and can cause serious infections. “In the case of MRSA, these bacteria have also spread in hospitals almost world-wide,” says Jukka Corander, professor at the University of Helsinki, who was a member

Chromatin structure: Slip-sliding away…

In the cell nucleus, the genomic DNA is packaged into a tightly condensed form, which is referred to as chromatin. The basic unit of chromatin organization is the nucleosome, a DNA-protein complex consisting of a defined length of DNA wrapped around a bead-like structure which is made of histone proteins. The individual nucleosomes are connected

Nightmares could be ‘turned off’ after scientists’ discovery

Nightmares could be ‘turned off’ after scientists discover the genes that control deep sleep Nightmares could be ‘turned off’ after scientists discover the genes that control deep sleep Two genes discovered that control the rapid eye movement (REM) stage of sleep Dreams occur during REM, which takes place in mammals, including humans Removing the genes

Rare discovery of new fatty acids

Decades after scientists discovered hundreds of different fatty acids in vegetable oils, two that had managed to elude detection have finally revealed themselves to a team led by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and Huazhong Agricultural University in China. Named for the sites of the two leading institutions, Nebraskanic acid and Wuhanic acid make up nearly

Stabilizing dysferlin-deficient muscle cell membrane improves muscle function: In experimental model of LGMD2B, vamorolone improves and prednisolone worsens myofiber repair

Healthy muscle cells rely on the protein dysferlin to properly repair the sarcolemmal membrane, a thin specialized membrane that serves a vital role in ensuring that muscle fibers are strong enough and have the necessary resources to contract. Mutations in the DYSF gene that produces this essential protein causes limb girdle muscular dystrophy type 2B

How enzyme detects ultraviolet light damage

Damage to DNA is a constant threat to cellular life, and so it is constantly monitored and detected by a family of enzymes called RNA polymerases, resulting in subsequent repair to maintain genome integrity. In a paper published this week in the journal PNAS, researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine, with

Neanderthal mother, Denisovan father! Hybrid fossil: Newly-sequenced genome sheds light on interactions between ancient hominins

Together with their sister group the Neanderthals, Denisovans are the closest extinct relatives of currently living humans. “We knew from previous studies that Neanderthals and Denisovans must have occasionally had children together,” says Viviane Slon, researcher at the MPI-EVA and one of three first authors of the study. “But I never thought we would be

Lipid droplets play crucial roles beyond fat storage

Lipid droplets: they were long thought of merely as the formless blobs of fat out of which spare tires and muffin tops were made. But these days, they’re “a really hot area of research,” says Michael Welte, professor and chair of biology at the University of Rochester. That’s in part because lipid droplets have been

Cancer research: Zombie genes and elephants

Around 17 percent of people die from cancer, but the disease is not a problem restricted to humans; it affects a wide range of species. From cats and dogs to fish and Tasmanian devils — even duck-billed dinosaurs seem to have been afflicted. Interestingly, under 5 percent of elephants in captivity die from cancer. This