HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Controlling body size by regulating the number of cells

Why are elephants bigger than mice? The main reason is that mice have fewer cells. Research published in Journal of Biology this week uncovers a key pathway that controls the number of cells in an animal, thereby controlling its size.

Ernst Hafen and his colleagues from the University of Zrich used fruit flies to investigate the role of the insulin-signalling pathway and in particular a molecule called FOXO. If insulin signalling is reduced, for example by starving developing fly larvae, FOXO activity increases; this then reduces the number of cells in the developing flies, causing them to be smaller.

Mammals have similar a signalling pathway, and it has been suggested to have a role in tumour formation. Hafen's work gives us more insights into how disruption of FOXO function can lead to cancer.

The researchers used a combination of genetic techniques, over expressing FOXO in parts of the fly and analysing flies that contained no functional FOXO protein, to investigate what FOXO does. They found that flies with no functional FOXO looked normal but were more sensitive to oxidative stress, thought to be a cause of ageing. Increasing the amounts of highly active FOXO protein in the developing fly eye caused many of the eye cells to die. However, the real clue to FOXO's function came from studying the effect of removing functional FOXO protein from flies that have a reduced ability to signal downstream of insulin.

Normally, reducing insulin signalling in developing flies causes these flies to become smaller as they have fewer, smaller cells. Yet without FOXO, these flies do not suffer such a severe size reduction. This is because they have more cells than normal insulin signalling pathway mutants. These experiments suggest that FOXO plays a role in reducing the number of cells in the developing fly if insulin is not present, by inhibiting cell division.

Hafen and his co-authors write, "In this study we provide genetic
'"/>

Contact: Gemma Bradley
press@biomedcentral.com
44-207-323-0323
BioMed Central
6-Aug-2003


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Controlling biomolecules with magnetic tweezers
2. Controlling the internal clock in darkness
3. Controlling cell adhesion: Researchers report first evidence of catch bonds
4. Controlling greenhouse gas carbon dioxide through carbon sequestration two-day symposium, April 2-3
5. New Gene Holds Promise For Controlling Crohns And Other Inflammatory Diseases
6. Controlling Problem Snakes: Saipan Benefits From USGS Research
7. New Discovery Offers Hope For Controlling Cholesterol, Atherosclerosis
8. Boosting Immune Response Against HIV-1 Key To Controlling Infection, Say University Of Pittsburgh Researchers
9. R-Type Channels - A New Type Of Calcium Channels Controlling Signal Transduction Between Neurons In The Brain
10. Curing Malaria, Controlling Mosquitoes Symposium Set For AAAS Meeting
11. Two Parasitic Wasps Show Promise For Controlling Pest Flies

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Controlling body size regulating the number cells

(Date:10/31/2014)... 30, 2014  HITLAB SM , a healthcare ... its inaugural HITLAB Innovators Summit SM on ... HITLAB will partner with the Clinton Foundation,s Health ... ProtoHack, Columbia Business School Alumni Club of ... Engineering and Operations Research, bringing together leaders in ...
(Date:10/30/2014)... UT Arlington bioengineering professor has received a $1.04 ... to regenerate cartilage tissue and reduce osteoarthritis using ... injection of microscaffolding made of biodegradable polymers., Liping ... the bioengineering department, said the research is primarily ... on the battlefield., "We,ve found that if we ...
(Date:10/30/2014)... German . ... to behave socially? This is one of the central ... studies assumed that it is almost impossible to control ... Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology have now demonstrated that ... cooperative behaviour of others. However, the possibilities available to ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):HITLAB Announces Inaugural HITLAB Innovators Summit 2HITLAB Announces Inaugural HITLAB Innovators Summit 3UTA researcher uses microscaffolding injections to mend cartilage, prevent osteoarthritis 2Together we are strong -- or insufferable 2Together we are strong -- or insufferable 3Together we are strong -- or insufferable 4
(Date:10/31/2014)... (PRWEB) October 31, 2014 Stronger ... healthcare, construction, finance and consumer electronics will help ... reason, industry research firm IBISWorld has added a ... its growing industry report collection. , The Biometrics ... for biometric technologies such as fingerprint, iris, retina ...
(Date:10/30/2014)... , Oct. 30, 2014  Ardelyx, Inc. (NASDAQ: ... focused on cardio-renal, gastrointestinal and metabolic diseases, today ... financial results on Thursday, November 6, 2014. Following ... a live conference call and webcast at 4:30pm ... provide a business update. The live ...
(Date:10/30/2014)... (PRWEB) October 30, 2014 Rancho ... that they have manually curated public data source ... profit customers. the data is now available for ... and unifies public and internal data sources for their ... knowledge out of the data that becomes more easily ...
(Date:10/30/2014)... Grace Century portfolio project, Provia Laboratories , ... the Board, to the National Stem Cell Ethics Committee ... by the Ministry of Health on behalf of the Government ... More than a year after Bahamian Parliament passed the ... Christie said the government has completed the accompanying regulations and ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Biometrics Scan Software in the US Industry Market Research Report Now Available from IBISWorld 2Biometrics Scan Software in the US Industry Market Research Report Now Available from IBISWorld 3Ardelyx to Report Third Quarter 2014 Financial Results on November 6, 2014 2Rancho BioSciences Manually Curated TCGA Data Sets Available 2Grace Century’s Stem Cell Biobank Project Announces Chairman’s Appointment to National Stem Cell Ethics Committee of The Bahamas 2Grace Century’s Stem Cell Biobank Project Announces Chairman’s Appointment to National Stem Cell Ethics Committee of The Bahamas 3
Cached News: