The results – which are published in the current issue of Nature Biotechnology – show that genes important for the development of diseases like Alzheimer’s follow the same cellular rules as genes involved in fundamentally different disorders, such as heart disorders, multiple sclerosis, breast cancer, and Type 2 diabetes.
”Many disorders manifest themselves in fundamentally different ways, but the new surprising discovery is that the underlying genes play together after the same rules. Our results show that the genes that trigger diseases, regardless of the type of disease in question, are social team players who cooperate according to highly specific rules. These rules have now been mapped, and we have pointed at hundreds of new genes that are likely to be involved in disorders including multiple sclerosis, Parkinson, heart disorders, and diabetes”, says Kasper Lage from Technical University of Denmark, who is the project coordinator on this work.
Heritable disorders will be easier to interpret for clinicians using the new results. Furthermore, the identification of new genes likely to be involved in disorders will help patients with defects in these genes. For example, if you are a high risk carrier of a gene that underlies a disease such as Type 2 diabetes, physicians could prevent or delay the manifestations of the disease by dietary guidance early in life.
”This is a crucial breakthrough for our understanding of heritable disorders, and a breakthrough for systems biology as a research strategy in the field genetics and disease”, says Søren Brunak leader of Center for Biological Sequence analysis at the Technical University of Denmark. ”We work with genes and proteins, but also with clinical literature describing the characteristics of different disorders. Then we let the computer integrate all of these data, and extract the pattern”, he adds.
The results are the product of a collaboration between the Center for Biological Sequence analysis, the Wilhelm Johannsen Center for Functional Genomics, Steno Diabetes Center in Denmark, and the SymBioSys Center for Computational Systems Biology, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in Belgium.
Stable magnetic bit of three atoms
21.09.2017 | Sonderforschungsbereich 668
Drones can almost see in the dark
20.09.2017 | Universität Zürich
Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.
Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...
19.09.2017 | Event News
12.09.2017 | Event News
06.09.2017 | Event News
22.09.2017 | Life Sciences
22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering
22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy