Home  |  Top News  |  Most Popular  |  Video  |  Multimedia  |  News Feeds  |  Feedback
  Medicine  |  Nature & Earth  |  Biology  |  Technology & Engineering  |  Space & Planetary  |  Psychology  |  Physics & Chemistry  |  Economics  |  Archaeology
Top > Medicine, Health Care > New Method Helps Link Genomic… >
New Method Helps Link Genomic Variation to Protein Production

Published: November 7, 2012.
By American Society of Human Genetics
http://www.ashg.org

Scientists have adopted a novel laboratory approach for determining the effect of genetic variation on the efficiency of the biological process that translates a gene's DNA sequence into a protein, such as hemoglobin, according to a presentation, Nov. 6, at the American Society of Human Genetics 2012 meeting in San Francisco.

In the 0.1% of the DNA that differs between any two individuals, scientists search for the biological mechanisms underlying human genetic differences, including disease susceptibility.

"How exactly these slight changes in the DNA affect the biology of the human body is not known in most cases," said Constantin Polychronakos, M.D., professor of pediatrics, experimental medicine and human genetics at McGill University, Montreal, Canada.

"We decided to investigate the possibility that some of these changes may alter the translation of RNA into protein, a question that had not been systematically examined before," he added.

Translation is the final stage of gene expression at which the gene's DNA recipe for a protein can be modified, said McGill University scientist Quan Li, Ph.D., who presented the research.

In general, genomic studies have focused on finding links between diseases and variation in DNA. However, the new study takes a big step toward understanding how that variation affects the production of proteins, which are the molecules that most directly affect health and disease.

The study was designed to determine the effect of single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), which are variations in the DNA sequence, on the process of translation, Dr. Li said.

Translation begins when a gene's DNA sequence is transcribed into the messenger RNA (mRNA) molecule that carries the transcript, or the blueprint for the protein encoded by the gene, to ribosomes, where proteins are manufactured in a cell.

Dr. Li and his colleagues developed a novel and scalable method that uses the binding of mRNAs to ribosomes as a proxy for translational efficiency of mRNAs that differ from one another because of SNPs.

"Because efficiently translated transcripts associate with multiple ribosomes while less active ones with fewer or no ribosomes, we hypothesized that functional transcripts would show a detectable shift in this distribution," said Dr. Li.

Huiqi Qu, Ph.D., co-investigator of this study and assistant professor at the University of Texas School of Public Health, Brownsville, said, "The results of the proof-of-principle pilot study have clearly shown translational differences between mRNAs that differ only slightly from one another can be detected at a transcriptome-wide scale."

The transcriptome refers to the multiple types of RNAs that function in a cell.

"This study may represent the 'tip of the iceberg,' and its application to larger sample sizes will facilitate a shift toward functional genomics," said Dr. Polychronakos. "Functional genomics tells us how genetic variation affects disease and points more directly toward possible therapies."

"It will add an important tool in the evaluation of genetic loci associated with complex disorders," Dr. Polychronakos added.


Show Reference »


Translate this page: Chinese French German Italian Japanese Korean Portuguese Russian Spanish


 
All comments are reviewed before being posted. We cannot accept messages that refer a product, or web site.If you are looking for a response to a question please use our another feedback page.
Related »

Rna 
12/12/13 
Speeding Up Gene Discovery
By Massachusetts Institute of Technology
CAMBRIDGE, MA -- Since the completion of the Human Genome Project, which identified nearly 20,000 protein-coding genes, scientists have been trying to decipher the roles of those genes. A …
Cells 
8/24/11 
A Question of Gene Silencing
By Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres
When investigating cancer cells, researchers discovered numerous peculiarities: Particular RNA molecules are present in large numbers, particular genes are overactive. Do these characteristics have a relation to cancer? Do …
System 
3/31/14 
Erasing a Genetic Mutation
By Massachusetts Institute of Technology
CAMBRIDGE, MA -- Using a new gene-editing system based on bacterial proteins, MIT researchers have cured mice of a rare liver disorder caused by a single genetic mutation. …
Cells 
9/13/10 
New Insights Provide Promise for Development of Tools to Protect Damaged Tissues
By St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital investigators have identified a novel structure in cells that serves as a control switch in the body's system for eliminating damaged cells and also …
Cell 
5/26/14 
Gene Mutation Found for Aggressive Form of Pancreatic Cancer
By University of California - San Diego
Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have identified a mutated gene common to adenosquamous carcinoma (ASC) tumors – the first known unique molecular signature …
Probe 
4/17/14 
Rapid And Accurate MRNA Detection in Plant Tissues
By American Journal of Botany
Gene expression is the process whereby the genetic information of DNA is used to manufacture functional products, such as proteins, which have numerous different functions in living organisms. Messenger …
Trna 
7/3/12 
Genetic 911: Cells' Emergency Systems Revealed
By Massachusetts Institute of Technology
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Toxic chemicals wreak havoc on cells, damaging DNA and other critical molecules. A new study from researchers at MIT and the University at Albany reveals how …
More » 
 
© Newsline Group  |  About  |  Privacy Policy  |  Feedback  |  Mobile  |  Japanese Edition