A research team led by Dr. Pierre Moffatt of the Shriners Hospital for Children in Montreal and McGill University’s Department of Human Genetics has uncovered the molecular mechanism by which the protein osteocrin controls bone growth – a discovery that may have important implications for people suffering from bone diseases affecting skeletal growth. The team’s findings appear in the December 14 edition of the Journal of Biological Chemistry.
Osteocrin is a small protein produced by the body’s bone-forming cells, or osteoblasts. In this study, mice that were genetically engineered to over-express osteocrin developed hunchbacks and elongated bones. This led Dr. Moffatt and his colleagues to the discovery that osteocrin locally controls the bone's supply of a hormone known as CNP, which plays an important role in the regulation of bone growth.
“The osteocrin gene was discovered as part of a project to identify novel bone genes that might have possible therapeutic actions,” explained Dr. Moffatt. "The project focused on the identification of classes of genes which are particularly attractive to medical researchers because they can be potentially exploited to develop new drug-based therapies."
Most of the research was initially carried out at Phenogene and Enobia Pharma, two Montreal-based biotech companies, but it was finalized in Dr. Moffatt’s lab at the Shriners Hospital for Children in Montreal.
“This fundamental research could pave the way to the rationalized design of new molecules which could have beneficial effects in various disorders that impair bone growth, particularly in children,” said Dr. Moffatt.
Mark Shainblum | EurekAlert!
The birth of a new protein
20.10.2017 | University of Arizona
Building New Moss Factories
20.10.2017 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau
University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event
On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.
Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....
Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).
When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...
Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.
How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...
Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.
It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...
17.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
20.10.2017 | Information Technology
20.10.2017 | Materials Sciences
20.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research