HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Researchers at UT Southwestern discover new function for old enzyme

DALLAS Feb. 3, 2005 In a step toward understanding the early evolution of the cell, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have discovered that an enzyme important in the production of energy also protects the mitochondria, the energy factory itself.

The enzyme, called aconitase, is a well-known component of the pathway in cells that produces energy. But in a study using baker's yeast, Dr. Ronald Butow, professor of molecular biology, has shown a new function for the enzyme keeping the mitochondrial genome intact.

The study is available online and in the Feb. 4 edition of the journal Science.

Mitochondria are the powerhouses of cells and create energy for all cellular processes. It is thought that mitochondria are descended from bacteria that originally took up residence in early cells. Through elements of a little-understood symbiotic relationship between the bacteria and the cell, the bacteria lost their independence and evolved into an organelle that provides energy for the cell. The relationship between mitochondria and the cell make each vital to the other's survival, and may explain a key biological event the development of an efficient energy producer to fuel the evolution of more complex life forms.

Because of their supposed microbial origins, mitochondria have their own DNA, which is separate from the DNA in the cell nucleus. Cells that have lost their mitochondrial DNA do not pass on working mitochondria when they divide. Without working mitochondria, cells cannot produce energy efficiently. Events that lead to mitochondrial DNA defects are associated with neuromuscular diseases and premature aging disorders in humans.

"Mitochondrial DNA was discovered in the 1960s, and we still do not know much about how it is organized, packaged or inherited," said Dr. Butow. "What is really amazing is that we very recently discovered proteins associated with mitochondrial DNA that were thought to on
'"/>

Contact: Megha Satyanarayana
megha.saty@utsouthwestern.edu
214-648-3404
UT Southwestern Medical Center
3-Feb-2005


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Researchers find pathway that controls cell size and division
2. Researchers watch antibiotics, bacteria meet at atomic level
3. Researchers discover gene responsible for Restless Legs Syndrome
4. Researchers witness natural selection at work in dramatic comeback of male butterflies
5. Researchers discover human embryonic stem cells are the ultimate perpetual fuel cell
6. Researchers use new approach to predict protein function
7. Researchers probe risks, benefits of folic acid fortification
8. Researchers identify genetic mutation that may alter tumor cell proliferation
9. Researchers discover method for identifying how cancer evades the immune system
10. Researchers use adult stem cells to create soft tissue
11. Researchers find gene that spurs development of the epididymis

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


(Date:1/8/2019)... ... January 07, 2019 , ... ... solutions, is proud to welcome Thomas Kennedy as head of sales and business ... for PureWay. , Mr. Kennedy has previously worked for Johnson & Johnson Medical, ...
(Date:1/4/2019)... ... January 02, 2019 , ... Lifecycle Biotechnologies ... the life science tools and service supplier turned 40 in 2018 and for ... catalog features not just part numbers like most catalogs, but rather, insightful information ...
(Date:12/25/2018)... ... 2018 , ... Researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine ... a long-standing computational concept known as “blacklisting,” which is commonly employed as a ... as a filter to single out genetic variations in patient genomes and exomes ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/8/2019)... ... January 08, 2019 , ... The American Society of ... were named by a selection committee made up of industry leaders identified by the ... Development grants are mentored awards created to support ASGCT members designing transformative pilot studies ...
(Date:1/4/2019)... (PRWEB) , ... January 01, 2019 , ... ... first Microbiome Conference at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting January 22-25, 2019 ... conference is invitation-only. , The World Economic Forum Annual Meeting brings together leaders ...
(Date:12/20/2018)... ... ... New Year’s brings reflection and desire to improve for individuals and businesses ... on the horizon, Jim Kasic, president and CEO of Boulder iQ, suggests five resolutions ... Regulation (MDR), digital health, and big data are just a few of the challenges ...
(Date:12/18/2018)... ... December 17, 2018 , ... ABCT , ... biosciences ventures invited to participate in the annual program. Twelve ventures will participate ... and a professional network. All startups receive an entrepreneur coach, access to active ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: