Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Micro molecules contribute mightily to heart problem

14.11.2006
Tiny bits of RNA — a chemical cousin of DNA — play a large role in causing enlargement of the heart, which is a major risk factor for heart failure and sudden death, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have discovered.

Their findings, available online this week and in an upcoming issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, are part of a fast-growing research field revealing the wide importance of so-called micro ribonucleic acids, or miRNAs, in numerous bodily functions, including cancer, cell death and cell growth.

“They haven’t been studied for very long,” said Dr. Eric Olson, chairman of molecular biology and senior author of the study. “These particular micro RNAs aren’t just markers of heart failure. They’re actually able to cause the disease, at least in mice.

“This is the first evidence for the involvement of micro RNAs in adult heart disease,” said Dr. Olson, who directs the Nancy B. and Jake L. Hamon Center for Basic Research in Cancer and the Nearburg Family Center for Basic Research in Pediatric Oncology.

Eventually, manipulating micro RNAs might be a way to treat heart disease, the researchers reported. A micro RNA can be blocked with a short complementary fragment of genetic material engineered to attach to RNA and neutralize it.

... more about:
»Micro »Molecular »RNA »miR-195

The process of identifying the damage-causing micro RNAs started with the researchers investigating whether any micro RNAs were present at abnormal levels in diseased, enlarged hearts of mice. Sixteen of the 28 such micro RNAs identified were focused on because they were similar to those found in humans and rats. The researchers found that some of the same micro RNAs are present at abnormal concentrations in diseased human hearts, suggesting that these micro RNAs also play a role in human heart disease.

Dr. Olson’s team eventually zeroed in on one micro RNA, called miR-195, which had both visible and functional effects on the heart. These effects were established by creating genetically modified mice that had higher-than-normal amounts of miR-195. Those mice had misshapen hearts and decreased pumping power.

In addition, adding miR-195 to heart cells cultured in dishes made the cells larger and more disorganized.

Because some of the micro RNAs studied are known to be involved in other cell processes, the researchers speculate that these particular RNAs play a role in cell division or growth of heart muscle cells. Further research is needed to determine the mechanism by which miR-195 causes the heart to enlarge, Dr. Olson said.

Other UT Southwestern researchers involved in the study were Dr. Eva van Rooij, postdoctoral researcher in molecular biology and the study’s lead author; Lillian Sutherland, research scientist in molecular biology; Dr. Ning Liu, postdoctoral researcher in molecular biology; graduate student research assistant Andrew Williams; research technician John McAnally; Dr. Robert Gerard, associate professor of internal medicine and molecular biology; and Dr. James Richardson, professor of pathology and molecular biology.

The work was supported by the National Institutes of Health, the Donald W. Reynolds Cardiovascular Clinical Research Center at UT Southwestern and the Welch Foundation.

Aline McKenzie | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.utsouthwestern.edu

Further reports about: Micro Molecular RNA miR-195

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht During HIV infection, antibody can block B cells from fighting pathogens
14.08.2018 | NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

nachricht First study on physical properties of giant cancer cells may inform new treatments
14.08.2018 | Brown University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: New interactive machine learning tool makes car designs more aerodynamic

Scientists develop first tool to use machine learning methods to compute flow around interactively designable 3D objects. Tool will be presented at this year’s prestigious SIGGRAPH conference.

When engineers or designers want to test the aerodynamic properties of the newly designed shape of a car, airplane, or other object, they would normally model...

Im Focus: Robots as 'pump attendants': TU Graz develops robot-controlled rapid charging system for e-vehicles

Researchers from TU Graz and their industry partners have unveiled a world first: the prototype of a robot-controlled, high-speed combined charging system (CCS) for electric vehicles that enables series charging of cars in various parking positions.

Global demand for electric vehicles is forecast to rise sharply: by 2025, the number of new vehicle registrations is expected to reach 25 million per year....

Im Focus: The “TRiC” to folding actin

Proteins must be folded correctly to fulfill their molecular functions in cells. Molecular assistants called chaperones help proteins exploit their inbuilt folding potential and reach the correct three-dimensional structure. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry (MPIB) have demonstrated that actin, the most abundant protein in higher developed cells, does not have the inbuilt potential to fold and instead requires special assistance to fold into its active state. The chaperone TRiC uses a previously undescribed mechanism to perform actin folding. The study was recently published in the journal Cell.

Actin is the most abundant protein in highly developed cells and has diverse functions in processes like cell stabilization, cell division and muscle...

Im Focus: Lining up surprising behaviors of superconductor with one of the world's strongest magnets

Scientists have discovered that the electrical resistance of a copper-oxide compound depends on the magnetic field in a very unusual way -- a finding that could help direct the search for materials that can perfectly conduct electricity at room temperatur

What happens when really powerful magnets--capable of producing magnetic fields nearly two million times stronger than Earth's--are applied to materials that...

Im Focus: World record: Fastest 3-D tomographic images at BESSY II

The quality of materials often depends on the manufacturing process. In casting and welding, for example, the rate at which melts solidify and the resulting microstructure of the alloy is important. With metallic foams as well, it depends on exactly how the foaming process takes place. To understand these processes fully requires fast sensing capability. The fastest 3D tomographic images to date have now been achieved at the BESSY II X-ray source operated by the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin.

Dr. Francisco Garcia-Moreno and his team have designed a turntable that rotates ultra-stably about its axis at a constant rotational speed. This really depends...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Within reach of the Universe

08.08.2018 | Event News

A journey through the history of microscopy – new exhibition opens at the MDC

27.07.2018 | Event News

2018 Work Research Conference

25.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

'Building up' stretchable electronics to be as multipurpose as your smartphone

14.08.2018 | Information Technology

During HIV infection, antibody can block B cells from fighting pathogens

14.08.2018 | Life Sciences

First study on physical properties of giant cancer cells may inform new treatments

14.08.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>