Finding suggests a common childhood leukemia may form in the womb

Researchers led by a scientist who joined the UC San Francisco faculty last week are reporting that a genetic mutation implicated in a common form of childhood leukemia appears to occur in the womb.

Their study, reported in the Oct. 30 issue of Lancet, indicates that two genes, known as TEL and AML1, aberrantly fuse during the development of the blood cells in the fetus. The fused genes then produce a protein that is potentially oncogenic.

Based on previous research, the team says the fused state of the two genes is not inherited; instead, it occurs during pregnancy, probably as a result of a developmental accident, as opposed to exposure to an environmental mutagen.

Importantly, the fusion of the TEL and AML1 genes is not sufficient to cause development of the disease, known as "common acute lymphoblastic leukemia," the researchers said. All people have two copies of every gene, and earlier work by the researchers on identical twins with leukemia indicates that a second genetic alteration - involving the second copy of the TEL gene, one of the two so-called "alleles" -- occurs post-natally to actually nudge blood cells into a leukemic state.

"It may be that the normal TEL allele successfully suppresses the function of the aberrant TEL-AML1 protein resulting from the fusion, so full-blown leukemia doesn't occur," said the lead author of the study, Joseph Wiemels, PhD, now a UCSF assistant research molecular epidemiologist. "One theory is that the second, normal TEL allele is lost, and that at this point the fused TEL-AML1 protein becomes oncogenic."

The researchers don't know what leads to the initial genetic abnormality in the womb, but their discovery, said Wiemels, will provide researchers with a time frame for analyzing the development of the mutation. Studies indicate that the second genetic alteration may result from an abnormal reaction to common childhood infections.

Wiemels conducted the research in the laboratory of Mel Greave

Contact: Jennifer O'Brien
University of California - San Francisco

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Findings suggest need for new view of p53 cancer proteins interaction with DNA
2. Finding the hole in the defenses of cavity-creating microbes
3. Findings redefine mechanism of action of RNA helicase enzymes
4. Findings of novel nanoproperties in selenium produced by bacteria open new area of exploration
5. Finding may help eczema sufferers tolerate smallpox vaccine
6. Findings could aid efforts to harness nature for making drugs
7. Findings offer clue to how molecule can both stimulate, suppress cell growth
8. Findings offer further understanding about growth and development in young male gymnasts
9. Findings in frog oocytes may help study of chromosome physiology
10. Finding dirty bombs and other radiation threats
11. Finding life away from Earth will be tough task, says noted paleontologist

Post Your Comments:

(Date:10/29/2015)... 2015  Connected health pioneer, Joseph C. Kvedar ... technology-enabled health and wellness, and the business opportunities that ... The Internet of Healthy Things . Long before ... existed, Dr. Kvedar, vice president, Connected Health, Partners HealthCare, ... moving care from the hospital or doctor,s office into ...
(Date:10/27/2015)... 2015 Synaptics Inc. (NASDAQ: SYNA ), the ... has adopted the Synaptics ® ClearPad ® ... its newest flagship smartphones, the Nexus 5X by LG ... --> --> Synaptics works closely ... collaboration in the joint development of next generation technologies. ...
(Date:10/23/2015)... and GOLETA, California , October 23, ... BIOPAC and SensoMotoric Instruments (SMI) announce a mobile plug ... data captured during interactive real-world tasks SensoMotoric ... integration of their established wearable solutions for eye tracking ... gaze behavior captured with SMI Eye Tracking Glasses ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... HILLS, N.J. (PRWEB) , ... November 24, 2015 , ... ... as the recipient of the 2016 USGA Green Section Award. Presented annually since 1961, ... golf through his or her work with turfgrass. , Clarke, of Iselin, ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... , ... November 24, 2015 , ... ... of the year and one of the premier annual events for pharmaceutical manufacturing: ... from 8–11 November 2015, where ISPE hosted the largest number of attendees in ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... The Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA), led ... also known as Multirotor Grand Prix, to represent the First–Person View (FPV) racing community. ... members have embraced this type of racing and several new model aviation pilots have ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... 2015  Twist Bioscience, a company focused on ... Twist Bioscience chief executive officer, will present at ... 1, 2015 at 3:10 p.m. Eastern Time at The Lotte ... --> --> About ... is on Twitter. Sign up to follow our ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: