HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
University of Pittsburgh discovers genetic 'shut down' trigger in healthy immune cells

PITTSBURGH, May 9 -- A fundamental genetic mechanism that shuts down an important gene in healthy immune system cells has been discovered that could one day lead to new therapies against infections, leukemia and other cancers. Results of a University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine study on the mechanism, called a somatic stop-codon mutation, are being reported today in the online journal PLoS ONE, published by the Public Library of Science.

"This kind of loss-of-function mutation can be very dangerous, and it is the first such mutation that has been identified in normal immune cells in blood," said Bora E. Baysal, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. "We did control experiments for two years to make sure it was real and not a technical error."

Dr. Baysal and his colleagues tested 180 samples, including blood from healthy individuals and other material from those with childhood leukemia, looking at specific portions of DNA in immune cells known as monocytes, natural killer cells and lymphocytes. These cells are key to the bodys immune response against infection and disease. The investigators found somatic stop-codon mutations in an average of 5.8 percent of crucial portions of genetic material that deliver instructions from DNA, called messenger RNA, in normal blood samples and in a quarter of leukemia samples.

"DNA is the blueprint for all living cells. It carries the genetic code for most biological functions and is passed virtually unchanged from generation to generation," said Dr. Baysal, who also is an associate investigator at the university-affiliated Magee-Womens Research Institute. "Harmful alterations in the code mutations can produce genetic disorders and play an important role in the development of cancer. Normal cells such as monocytes, lymphocytes and natural killer cells have many mechanisms to recognize and repair m
'"/>

Contact: Michele Baum
baummd@upmc.edu
412-647-3555
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences
9-May-2007


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. NIH gives $8M to University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine for myositis research
2. A study by the MUHC and McGill University opens a new door to understanding cancer
3. Biologists at Tufts University discover 1 reason why chromosomes break, often leading to cancer
4. $9M grant awarded to University of Cincinnati for bipolar disorder research
5. University of Leeds strengthens China links in membrane and neurobiology
6. University of Colorado licenses two influenza virus detection discoveries to Quidel Corp.
7. Manchester University helps with pharaoh DNA analysis
8. University of Cincinnati receives $1.7M to research molecular treatment of brain injury
9. University of Arizona launches major scientific research initiative at Biosphere 2
10. Link between obesity and enlarged heart discovered by University of Arizona researchers
11. Bee researcher at Arizona State University is 1 of 20 new Pew Scholars in the biomedical sciences

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


(Date:6/14/2017)... (NYSE: IBM ) is introducing several innovative partner startups ... collaboration between startups and global businesses, taking place in ... nine startups will showcase the solutions they have built with ... France is one of the ... percent increase in the number of startups created between 2012 ...
(Date:5/16/2017)... 16, 2017   Bridge Patient Portal , ... MD EMR Systems , an electronic medical ... GE, have established a partnership to build an ... the GE Centricity™ products, including Centricity Practice Solution ... These new integrations will allow healthcare delivery ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... New York , April 19, 2017 ... competitive, as its vendor landscape is marked by the ... the market is however held by five major players ... Safran. Together these companies accounted for nearly 61% of ... of the leading companies in the global military biometrics ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... platform specifically designed for life science researchers to analyze and interpret datasets, ... Franklin, who made a major contribution to the discovery of the double-helix ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... ... Personal eye wash is a basic first aid supply for any work environment, but most ... you rinse first if a dangerous substance enters both eyes? It’s one less decision, and ... unique dual eye piece. , “Whether its dirt and debris, or an acid or alkali, ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... , Oct. 11, 2017  VMS BioMarketing, a leading ... a nationwide oncology Clinical Nurse Educator (CNE) network, which will ... need for communication among health care professionals to enhance the ... nurses, office staff, and other health care professionals to help ... breast cancer. ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... October 11, 2017 , ... ... implantation and pregnancy rates in frozen and fresh in vitro fertilization (IVF) ... and maternal age to IVF success. , After comparing the results from the ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: