HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
UT Southwestern researchers find gene mutation that leads to 'broken hearts'

Dallas -- July 20, 2006 -- Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have identified a group of fruit fly gene mutations responsible for "broken hearts" in the embryonic stages of development, a discovery that could help identify genes that cause human heart defects.

"We engineered a fruit fly so that the heart would glow in the dark and found a new type of malformation, completely unexpectedly," said Dr. Eric Olson, chairman of molecular biology at UT Southwestern and senior author of the study appearing in today's issue of Science. "We coined the term 'brokenhearted' for this defect because two kinds of cardiac cells separated, thus causing the heart to fall apart, with a loss of heart function and embryonic death."

The heart is the first organ to form and function in the embryo. Abnormalities in the complex process of heart formation result in congenital heart defects, the most common birth defects in humans afflicting about 1 percent of newborns. Because the events of heart formation are very similar throughout the animal world, the fruit fly is a useful model to study the causes of heart defects in mammals, Dr. Olson said.

The researchers found that mutations in genes encoding enzymes in a pathway for synthesis of a small lipid caused this broken heart defect in fruit flies. One of these enzymes, HMG CoA reductase, also plays a key role in the synthesis of cholesterol in humans. In fruit flies, these enzymes are required to generate a small lipid to modify a signaling protein, which is required for heart formation. The study suggests the involvement of the same biochemical pathway in human heart formation and congenital heart disease.

"We were surprised to discover that a group of enzymes involved in lipid synthesis plays a previously unrecognized role in assembling the heart. The same mechanism is likely to be involved in human-heart development," said Dr. Olson, director of the Nancy B. and Jake L. Hamo
'"/>

Contact: Katherine Morales
katherine.morales@utsouthwestern.edu
214-648-3404
UT Southwestern Medical Center
20-Jul-2006


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. UT Southwestern joins national clinical trial to uncover long-term effects of West Nile virus
2. UT Southwestern leaders to receive national award for medical research accomplishments
3. UT Southwestern scientist receives NIH Directors Pioneer Award
4. UT Southwestern scientist named Keck Foundation Distinguished Young Scholar in Medical Research
5. Plague agent helps UT Southwestern researchers find novel signaling system in cells
6. One of the nations first 7-Tesla magnetic resonance imaging devices for human studies planned at UT Southwestern Medical Center
7. DNA end caps may lead to cancer treatments, UT Southwestern researchers report
8. UT Southwestern scientist honored among best in Texas research
9. UT Southwestern scientist receives international award for pediatric research
10. UT Southwestern physician-researcher wins international award for lipid research
11. UT Southwestern scientist elected to National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine

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


(Date:2/4/2016)... 2016 The field of Human Microbiome ... most popular hubs of the biotechnology industry. While ... studies of human microbiota, have garnered a lot ... microbiome space has literally exploded in terms of ... report focuses on biomedical aspects of research, development, ...
(Date:2/3/2016)... 3, 2016 ... the "Emotion Detection and Recognition Market ... Others), Software Tools (Facial Expression, Voice Recognition ... Regions - Global forecast to 2020" ... http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/d8zjcd/emotion_detection ) has announced the addition ...
(Date:2/2/2016)... Technology Enhancements Accelerate Growth of X-ray Imaging ... and computed radiography markets in Thailand ... Indonesia (TIM). It provides an in-depth analysis ... as regional market drivers and restraints. The study offers ... market attractiveness, both for digital and computed radiography. Market ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/11/2016)... ORLANDO, Florida , February 11, 2016 ... Populations and Promote Genetic Understanding to Support Research and Discovery ... consortium, GenomeAsia 100K, today announced an ambitious plan to sequence ... 12 South Asian countries and at least 7 of North ... --> In the first phase, the project will focus ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... ATLANTA , Feb. 11, 2016  Spectra BioPharma ... Organization (CSO) that provides biopharma companies the experience, ... implement and deploy outsourced sales teams. Created in ... team addresses both the strategic and tactical needs ... innovative sales solutions through both personal and non-personal ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... BioInformant announces the February 2016 release of its ... and Technologies – Market Size, Segments, Trends, and Projections ... The first and only market research firm ... more than a decade of historical information on all ... type. This powerful 175 page global strategic report contains ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... Early-career researchers from Indonesia ... Uganda and Yemen ... Indonesia , Nepal , ... Yemen are being honored for their accomplishments in nutrition, psychiatry, ... mentoring young women scientists who are pursuing careers in agriculture, biology and ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: