The research group has previously shown that the QKI gene is a possible contributing cause of the disease schizophrenia. Now the scientists have found that QKI normally regulates the myelin genes, that is, the genes that govern the production of myelin, the insulation material for nerve fibers.
Moreover, the research team can show that the genetic expression of QKI is altered in schizophrenic patients and that the change correlates directly with the change in the myelin gene expression.
“In schizophrenics, fewer myelin proteins and less myelin are produced, we believe. Since myelin functions as an insulating substance around nerve fibers, impulse transmission is hampered in schizophrenics,” explains Elena Jazin.
The team of scientists has also seen that a variant of QKI called 7kb is the variant that changes most in schizophrenic patients. This 7kb also has a major effect on the expression of myelin genes in these patients.
“Just how the reduction of myelin affects the symptoms in schizophrenic patients is something we must investigate further,” says Elena Jazin.
It is hoped that the new findings will lead to improved treatment of schizophrenia in the future.
“We hope that existing drugs can be altered so that more patients will be helped and the side effects reduced. Perhaps the findings will also lead to new medicines. But this will require research and will take a long time,” says Elena Jazin.
Schizophrenia is one of the most common psychiatric public health disorders, affecting an average of one percent of the population of the world. Today’s methods of treatment can partially alleviate the symptoms, but many patients are not helped at all by them. Normally patients become ill between the ages of 15 and 30 and remain so for the rest of their lives.
The Uppsala University scientists in the research group are, besides Elena Jazin, Karolina Åberg and Peter Saetre. Niclas Jareborg has participated from AstraZeneca.
Cryo-electron microscopy achieves unprecedented resolution using new computational methods
24.03.2017 | DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
How cheetahs stay fit and healthy
24.03.2017 | Forschungsverbund Berlin e.V.
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...
20.03.2017 | Event News
14.03.2017 | Event News
07.03.2017 | Event News
24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences
24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy