Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers identify gene linked to vertebral defects in patient populations

19.05.2008
Stowers Institute researchers Karen Staehling-Hampton, Ph.D., Managing Director of Molecular Biology, and Olivier Pourquié, Ph.D., Investigator, collaborated with colleagues from around the world to show that genes known to cause spinal mutations in chick and mouse model systems also play an important role in human patients with congenital vertebral abnormalities.

The discovery was published today on the Web site of the American Journal of Human Genetics.

Working with samples from 31 patients at Boston Children’s Hospital with various congenital vertebral defects, the team sequenced five genes thought to be involved in the malformations. In a patient of Puerto Rican descent, the team discovered a mutation in the MESP2 gene – a mutation that completely disrupted the function of the gene.

The affected patient had Spondylothoracic Dysostosis, also known as Jarcho-Levin Syndrome. Spondylothoracic Dysostosis is a rare genetic disorder characterized by distinctive malformations of the vertebrae and ribs, respiratory problems, and other abnormalities. Infants born with Spondylothoracic Dysostosis have short necks, limited neck motion, and are short in stature. Spondylothoracic Dysostosis is prevalent in the Puerto Rican population.

Sequencing of samples from additional Spondylothoracic Dysostosis patients of Puerto Rican descent demonstrated the same mutation in the MESP2 gene.

“Spondylothoracic Dysostosis was first characterized in the Puerto Rican population 70 years ago,” said Dr. Staehling-Hampton, co-equal first author on the paper, “but the gene mutation causing the condition was not isolated until now. The MESP2 mutation can be detected by a simple assay, so identification of this mutation will allow people who have a family history of Spondylothoracic Dysostosis to determine if they carry the mutation and whether they are at risk of passing the disorder on to future generations.”

“After working for many years to study spinal formation in chicks and mice, it is rewarding to expand our investigation to clinical applications,” said Dr. Pourquié, senior author on the publication. “We will continue to work with colleagues to collect more samples from patients with congenital vertebral abnormalities and sequence more genes to look for causative mutations. Additionally, we will sequence MESP2 in a larger collection of DNA samples from Puerto Rico to determine the carrier frequency of this MESP2 mutation in the general Puerto Rican population.”

Marie Jennings | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.stowers-institute.org

Further reports about: Dysostosis MESP2 Mutation Rican Spondylothoracic vertebral

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Research team creates new possibilities for medicine and materials sciences
22.01.2018 | Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

nachricht Saarland University bioinformaticians compute gene sequences inherited from each parent
22.01.2018 | Universität des Saarlandes

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Artificial agent designs quantum experiments

On the way to an intelligent laboratory, physicists from Innsbruck and Vienna present an artificial agent that autonomously designs quantum experiments. In initial experiments, the system has independently (re)discovered experimental techniques that are nowadays standard in modern quantum optical laboratories. This shows how machines could play a more creative role in research in the future.

We carry smartphones in our pockets, the streets are dotted with semi-autonomous cars, but in the research laboratory experiments are still being designed by...

Im Focus: Scientists decipher key principle behind reaction of metalloenzymes

So-called pre-distorted states accelerate photochemical reactions too

What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...

Im Focus: The first precise measurement of a single molecule's effective charge

For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.

Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...

Im Focus: Paradigm shift in Paris: Encouraging an holistic view of laser machining

At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.

No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...

Im Focus: Room-temperature multiferroic thin films and their properties

Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.

Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

10th International Symposium: “Advanced Battery Power – Kraftwerk Batterie” Münster, 10-11 April 2018

08.01.2018 | Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Thanks for the memory: NIST takes a deep look at memristors

22.01.2018 | Materials Sciences

Radioactivity from oil and gas wastewater persists in Pennsylvania stream sediments

22.01.2018 | Earth Sciences

Saarland University bioinformaticians compute gene sequences inherited from each parent

22.01.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks Wissenschaft & Forschung
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>