People have them, cats have them and whales have some, too. Neurons, those interlinked nerve cells that carry sensations including pain, stretch from our spinal cords to the tips of our toes, paws or fins.
According to a new study published in the journal Cell, scientists from the Harvard Medical School, the University of Montreal and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute have found a new way by which nerve cells relay information that tell them to grow from millimeters to meters in length.
In other words, the researchers found a new signaling pathway that charters the course for cell progression to allow their growth. The team made an intriguing connection between nerve cells and a receptor called DCC (Deleted in Colorectal Carcinoma). The discovery means cells perform functions in unimagined ways – challenging previous views on how cells respond to their environment – that could prove beneficial in cell growth following nerve damage or detrimental in diseases such as cancer.
"We found an alternate way that helps nerve cells respond quickly and locally," says co-author Philippe P. Roux, a professor of pathology and cell biology and a researcher at the University of Montreal Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer (IRIC). "This is just the beginning, since our findings suggest that more cellular receptors may function in the same way."
Dr. Roux, who is also Canada Research Chair in Signal Transduction and Proteomics, says the study could potentially open new treatment avenues: "We can envisage manipulating this alternate mechanism to make cells respond locally to their environment. Our findings mean that scientists must consider a new way that cells organize themselves to perform essential functions."
Partners in research:
This study was supported by the National Institutes of Health, Canadian Cancer Society Research Institute, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Canadian Institutes of Health Research and Human Frontier Science Program Organization.
About the study:
The article, "Transmembrane Receptor DCC Associates with Protein Synthesis Machinery and Regulates Translation," published in the journal Cell, was authored by Joseph Tcherkezian, Perry A. Brittis and John G. Flanagan of the Harvard Medical School; Franziska Thomas of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute; Philippe P. Roux of the University of Montreal.
Note to editors:
The Université de Montréal name can be adapted to University of Montreal (never Montreal University).
On the Web:Cell: www.cell.com
Sylvain-Jacques Desjardins | EurekAlert!
Rochester scientists discover gene controlling genetic recombination rates
23.04.2018 | University of Rochester
One step closer to reality
20.04.2018 | Max-Planck-Institut für Entwicklungsbiologie
University of Connecticut researchers have created a biodegradable composite made of silk fibers that can be used to repair broken load-bearing bones without the complications sometimes presented by other materials.
Repairing major load-bearing bones such as those in the leg can be a long and uncomfortable process.
Study published in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces is the outcome of an international effort that included teams from Dresden and Berlin in Germany, and the US.
Scientists at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) together with colleagues from the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) and the University of Virginia...
Novel highly efficient and brilliant gamma-ray source: Based on model calculations, physicists of the Max PIanck Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg propose a novel method for an efficient high-brilliance gamma-ray source. A giant collimated gamma-ray pulse is generated from the interaction of a dense ultra-relativistic electron beam with a thin solid conductor. Energetic gamma-rays are copiously produced as the electron beam splits into filaments while propagating across the conductor. The resulting gamma-ray energy and flux enable novel experiments in nuclear and fundamental physics.
The typical wavelength of light interacting with an object of the microcosm scales with the size of this object. For atoms, this ranges from visible light to...
Stable joint cartilage can be produced from adult stem cells originating from bone marrow. This is made possible by inducing specific molecular processes occurring during embryonic cartilage formation, as researchers from the University and University Hospital of Basel report in the scientific journal PNAS.
Certain mesenchymal stem/stromal cells from the bone marrow of adults are considered extremely promising for skeletal tissue regeneration. These adult stem...
In the fight against cancer, scientists are developing new drugs to hit tumor cells at so far unused weak points. Such a “sore spot” is the protein complex...
13.04.2018 | Event News
12.04.2018 | Event News
09.04.2018 | Event News
23.04.2018 | Trade Fair News
23.04.2018 | Information Technology
23.04.2018 | Life Sciences