HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Study identifies new gene therapy tools for inherited blindness

July 25, 2007 -- An improved approach to gene therapy may one day treat some of the nearly 200 inherited forms of blindness, scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis suggest this week.

In a paper published online by Public Library of Science ONE, researchers take initial steps toward filling a gap in the toolkit for treating blindness by identifying DNA elements that control when and where genes linked to blindness are turned on.

"In its most basic form, gene therapy requires three components," explains Joseph Corbo, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of pathology and immunology and senior author of the paper. "You need to identify the gene that's mutated in patients and obtain a healthy copy of that gene; you need an agent to deliver the healthy gene to a patient's cells, which is usually a weakened virus; and then you also need additional DNA elements that turn on the healthy gene in the right cells and at the right levels."

Corbo and colleagues used a computational analysis of DNA to look for elements that can turn on genes in the eye's light-sensing photoreceptor cells. Their search identified hundreds of potential cis-regulatory elements, which are segments of DNA involved in turning genes on and off. They confirmed 19 of these elements, more than doubling the number known to scientists. The newly discovered elements can be used as switches to activate blindness therapies.

"This result is significant because the number of cis-regulatory elements previously available for gene therapy was quite limited," Corbo explains.

By some estimates, photoreceptors are the most energy-intensive cells in the human body, consuming more power than any other cell type. Unfortunately, high energy also brings a high degree of volatility.

"If anything goes wrong in these cells, they're going down the tubes," Corbo says. "That's why there are so many inherited forms of blindness linked to degeneration of photoreceptors.
'"/>

Contact: Michael C. Purdy
purdym@wustl.edu
314-286-0122
Washington University School of Medicine
25-Jul-2007


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Study begins to reveal clues to the cause and progression of sepsis
2. Study finds gender differences in renal and other genes contributing to blood pressure
3. Study suggests estrogen deficiency can lead to obesity-induced high blood pressure after menopause
4. Study: Sticking to the sand might not be such good, clean fun for beachgoers
5. Study points to new way to predict death risk from torn aorta
6. Study finds contaminated water reaching Floridas offshore keys
7. Study sheds light on why humans walk on two legs
8. Study explains how pathogens evolve to escape detection
9. Study finds hereditary link to premenstrual depression
10. Study identifies energy efficiency as reason for evolution of upright walking
11. Study shows cane sugar, corn sweeteners have similar effects on appetite

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


(Date:12/4/2019)... (PRWEB) , ... December 04, 2019 , ... ... that Dr. Marque Todd , a regulatory toxicology expert with more than ... as an Expert Consultant. , Dr. Todd has extensive experience with a ...
(Date:11/27/2019)... (PRWEB) , ... November 26, 2019 , ... Personalized ... event put on by the Arthritis Foundation and hosted by Dr. Steven Sampson and ... event, which took place on October 23, 2019, highlighted the ongoing efforts to promote ...
(Date:11/19/2019)... HERCULES, Calif. (PRWEB) , ... November 19, 2019 ... ... for epigenetics research and sample preparation, and Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc. (NYSE: BIO and ... announced a partnership in which Diagenode will offer Single-Cell ATAC-Seq (scATAC-Seq) Services, featuring ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/7/2020)... ... January 07, 2020 , ... Vuja De Sciences (“Vuja ... and recurrence, today announced the appointments of Chand Khanna, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (Onc), and ... of Vuja De said, “We are delighted to welcome Chand and Lee as new ...
(Date:1/7/2020)... MATEO, CA (PRWEB) , ... January 06, 2020 ... ... Smart Home Control, today announced its expansion into whole-home smart lighting with two ... Smart Dimmer Switch unlocks the ability for homeowners and homebuilders to affordably add ...
(Date:12/31/2019)... Md. (PRWEB) , ... December 31, 2019 , ... ... ground in expanding its pharmaceutical product development lab in Maryland. Emphasis ... the increased size and expanded capabilities, Vici Health Sciences will be well positioned ...
(Date:12/30/2019)... ... December 30, 2019 , ... Leak Detection ... for the Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology, Medical Device and Food Packaging Industries is pleased to ... compliant software program specific to the custom-built helium leak testing systems it designs ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: