HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
First molecule discovered that directs nerve cells to connect with each other

UCSF scientists have identified for the first time a molecule that directs neurons to form connections with each other during an animal's early development creating synapses essential to all behavior.

The molecule may be one of only a few "matchmaker" proteins that instruct one type of neuron to form a synapse with another type, essentially wiring up the body during embryological development, the researchers say. Such molecules have been sought for decades, but this is the first discovered in a living animal.

The matchmaker protein, known as SYG-1, was discovered in studies of egg-laying behavior in the roundworm C. elegans. It is a member of a large family of proteins known as the immunoglobulin superfamily, and is closely related to proteins in fruit flies, mice and humans. The related molecules are always found where two different types of cells form a close connection, and SYG-1 probably receives a signal to form a synapse from the animal's egg-laying tissue, the scientists report.

Discovery of matchmaker proteins in humans may help treat disorders such as chronic epilepsy and chronic pain in which synapse formation goes awry and neurons form the "wrong" connections, said Cornelia Bargmann, PhD, professor of anatomy and Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator at UCSF. Knowing which proteins direct synapse formation may also help in treatment of peripheral nerve damage, which requires nerves to reconnect with precisely the right partner from among many in their immediate environment.

Scientists think that each neuron in a developing animal is destined to a particular behavioral task, and the synaptic connection allows it to achieve its destiny, connecting with the right partner from among many dozens of kinds of neurons it encounters.

"Like people, neurons can make good or bad choices about who they associate with," Bargmann said. "Molecules like the protein we discovered are needed to make the best choice."


'"/>

Contact: Wallace Ravven
wravven@pubaff.ucsf.edu
415-476-2557
University of California - San Francisco
6-Mar-2003


Page: 1 2 3 4

Related biology news :

1. First glimpse of DNA binding to viral enzyme
2. First clinical study of new pediatric croup vaccine shows safety, tolerability in adults
3. 2nd media alert First Scientific Conference on Childhood Leukaemia
4. First International Scientific Conference on Childhood Leukaemia
5. First ever standards linking climate change, biodiversity and poverty seek global peer review
6. First genetic comparison of purebred domestic dogs produces surprises
7. First time in the U.S.: Saint Louis University tests third-generation vaccine against smallpox
8. First target for childhood malaria vaccine
9. First study of resveratrol dietary supplement finds effect on breast and prostate cancers unlikely
10. First flavors form a lasting impression
11. STN International launches Derwent World Patents Index First View

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:1/19/2017)... Jan. 19, 2017 Sensory Inc ... and security for consumer electronics, and i ... systems and cybersecurity solutions, today announced a global ... financial institutions worldwide to bolster security of data ... secure user authentication platforms they offer, innerCore now ...
(Date:1/13/2017)... WASHINGTON, N.Y. , Jan. 13, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... of technology solutions for the homecare industry, including ... of homecare industry expert, Justin Jugs, as Senior ... brings more than 15 years of homecare experience ... team in developing strategic plans to align Sandata,s ...
(Date:1/12/2017)... Oregon and PUNE, India , January 12, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... Market: Opportunities and Forecasts, 2015 - 2022," projects that the global biometric technology market ... of 19.4% from 2016 to 2022. Continue Reading ... ... ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/21/2017)... ... February 21, 2017 , ... Vortex ... , a fully automated benchtop system for collecting intact circulating tumor cells (CTCs) ... at the Molecular Medicine Tri Conference (Tri-Con) Annual Meeting 2017 (February 19–24 San ...
(Date:2/21/2017)... , ... February 21, 2017 , ... ... that Dr. Trevor Heritage has joined its executive team to lead the development ... to provide insights to help improve the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. The ...
(Date:2/21/2017)... ... February 21, 2017 , ... ... pair its $200M operational capacity with its strategic internal leadership to provide ... affecting quality and operational management. With office locations in North Carolina, ...
(Date:2/21/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... February 21, 2017 , ... ... creating transformative design and manufacturing solutions for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) , today ... 2017 marks Creation Technologies’ third consecutive year winning in its category of electronics ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: