HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Scientists identify switch for brain's natural anti-oxidant defense

BOSTON--Scientists at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute report they have found how the brain turns on a system designed to protect its nerve cells from toxic "free radicals," a waste product of cell metabolism that has been implicated in some degenerative brain diseases, heart attacks, strokes, cancer, and aging.

Potentially, the researchers say, it may be possible to use drugs to strengthen the anti-oxidant system in the brain as a treatment for presently incurable diseases like Parkinson's, Huntington's, and Alzheimer's and possibly other maladies.

Dana-Farber's Bruce Spiegelman, PhD, and colleagues, using a mouse model, discovered that a regulatory protein, PGC-1a, switches on the anti-oxidant system when free radicals, or reactive oxygen species, begin to accumulate. It's believed that some brain diseases involve a failure of the protective system, and the authors report that turning on PGC-1a to high levels in cultured cells protected them against nerve toxins. The findings will be reported in the Oct. 20 issue of the journal Cell.

"This could have broad implications for the many diseases in which reactive oxygen species are implicated," said Spiegelman. Anti-oxidant supplements have been used with some success in patients with neurodegenerative diseases, but Spiegelman noted that the process sparked by PGC-1a "is how nature does it."

Researchers currently are screening drugs in search of compounds that could spur PGC-1a expression in brain cells, as well as exploring whether any harmful side effects might result. PGC-1a is a transcriptional co-activator discovered in Spiegelman's Dana-Farber laboratory in 1998. It has subsequently been found to play a master regulatory role in metabolic processes and muscle function, as well as being a culprit in diabetes.

The report establishes for the first time that PGC-1a both drives the mitochondria to make energy and triggers the cleanup of toxic free radicals that accumulate in
'"/>

Contact: Bill Schaller
william_schaller@dfci.harvard.edu
617-632-5357
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
19-Oct-2006


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Scientists show that mitochondrial DNA variants are linked to risk factors for type 2 diabetes
2. Scientists prove that disputed Korean stem cell line comes from an unfertilized egg and not cloning
3. Scientists move closer to bio-engineered bladders
4. Scientists find stem cell switch
5. Scientists discover new way to study nanostructures
6. Scientists a step closer to understanding how anaesthetics work in the brain
7. Scientists to make news at Computational Biology Conference
8. Accident-prone? Scientists link brain function to knee injuries
9. Scientists take next step in understanding potential target for ovarian cancer treatment
10. Scientists find brown fat master switch
11. Scientists identify 2 distinct Parkinsons networks

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


(Date:5/23/2017)... -- Hunova, the first robotic gym for the rehabilitation and functional motor sense ... Genoa, Italy . The first 30 robots will be available ... USA . The technology was developed and patented at the IIT ... Movendo Technology thanks to a 10 million euro investment from entrepreneur Sergio ... ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... , April 24, 2017 Janice ... partner with  Identity Strategy Partners, LLP (IdSP) , ... or without President Trump,s March 6, 2017 ... Entry , refugee vetting can be instilled with greater ... (Right now, all refugee applications are suspended by ...
(Date:4/13/2017)... , April 13, 2017 UBM,s Advanced Design ... will feature emerging and evolving technology through its ... Summits will run alongside the expo portion of the ... panels and demonstrations focused on trending topics within 3D ... design and manufacturing event will take place June 13-15, 2017 ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... San Diego-based team building and cooking events ... announced today. The bold new look is part of a transformation to increase ... a significant growth period. , It will also expand its service offering from its ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... ... Dr. Bob Harman, founder and CEO of VetStem Biopharma, Inc. ... event entitled “Stem Cells and Their Regenerative Powers,” was held on August 31st, ... was joined by two human doctors: Peter B. Hanson, M.D., Chief of Orthopedic Surgery, ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... USDM Life Sciences ... the life sciences and healthcare industries, announces a presentation by Subbu Viswanathan and ... presentation, “Automating GxP Validation for Agile Cloud Platforms,” will present a revolutionary approach ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... , ... October 09, 2017 , ... The award-winning American ... broadcast first quarter 2018. American Farmer airs Tuesdays at 8:30aET on RFD-TV. , ... faced with the challenge of how to continue to feed a growing nation. At ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: