The researchers decided it would take too much time to analyze which of the approximately 70 genes that adversely affect the sense of hearing may also negatively affect the sense of touch. Therefore, the researchers focused specifically on patients with the Usher syndrome, a hereditary form of hearing impairment, in which the patients progressively become blind. Usher syndrome patients have varying degrees of hearing impairment, and the disease is genetically very well studied. There are nine known Usher genes carrying mutations which cause the disease.
The researchers examined one cohort of patients in a special consultation at the Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin for Usher patients from all over Germany. A second cohort was recruited at the university hospital La Fe in Valencia, Spain. The studies revealed that not all patients with Usher-syndrome have poor tactile acuity and touch sensitivity. The researchers showed that only patients with Usher syndrome who have a mutation in the gene USH2A have poor touch sensitivity. This mutation is also responsible for the impaired hearing of 19 patients. The 29 Usher-syndrome patients in whom the mutation could not be detected had a normal sense of touch. The researchers thus demonstrated that there is a common genetic basis for the sense of hearing and touch. They suspect that even more genes will be discovered in the future that influence both mechanosensory traits.
Barbara Bachtler | Max-Delbrück-Centrum
Sweetening neurotransmitter receptors and other neuronal proteins
28.10.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Hirnforschung
A new look at thyroid diseases
28.10.2016 | Jacobs University Bremen gGmbH
Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.
This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...
Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion
Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.
"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...
14.10.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
12.10.2016 | Event News
27.10.2016 | Materials Sciences
27.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy
27.10.2016 | Life Sciences