Structure relevant to cell growth

Oct 22, 2005

Utah researchers found a special type of molecular structure that helps keep genes properly turned off until the structure is ejected.

In all organisms, the genome is split into chromosomes -- compressed long strands of DNA, which are subdivided into functional DNA segments called genes. Genes function as the blueprints for building particular pieces of cellular machinery.

However, different types of cells each require different types of cellular machinery, and must produce that machinery according to a biological timetable. A central issue in molecular biology is finding out how a cell regulates which genes are on, or active, and which genes are off, or repressed.

This topic has direct relevance to human disease, as improper activation or repression of genes that regulate cellular growth is a common feature of cancer cells.

"We must understand how genes are activated or repressed in normal cells in order to understand how this process is misregulated in cancer cells," says lead researcher Brad Cairns, of the Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah.

The findings are reported in journal Cell.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

Explore further: A two generation lens: Current state policies fail to support families with young children

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Wireless sensor transmits tumor pressure

7 hours ago

The interstitial pressure inside a tumor is often remarkably high compared to normal tissues and is thought to impede the delivery of chemotherapeutic agents as well as decrease the effectiveness of radiation ...

A nanosized hydrogen generator

8 hours ago

(Phys.org) —Researchers at the US Department of Energy's (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory have created a small scale "hydrogen generator" that uses light and a two-dimensional graphene platform to boost ...

Tim Cook puts personal touch on iPhone 6 launch

8 hours ago

Apple chief Tim Cook personally kicked off sales of the iPhone 6, joining in "selfies" and shaking hands with customers Friday outside the company's store near his Silicon Valley home.

Recommended for you

New hadrosaur noses into spotlight

Sep 19, 2014

Call it the Jimmy Durante of dinosaurs – a newly discovered hadrosaur with a truly distinctive nasal profile. The new dinosaur, named Rhinorex condrupus by paleontologists from North Carolina State Univer ...

How does calling, texting and emailing affect teens socially?

Sep 19, 2014

Near-constant smartphone use is a hallmark of today's teenagers. And while the phenomenon has given rise to new injuries – "text neck" is now a growing problem – how is all that calling, texting and emailing affecting ...

Scholar tracks the changing world of gay sexuality

Sep 19, 2014

With same-sex marriage now legalized in 19 states and laws making it impossible to ban homosexuals from serving in the military, gay, lesbian and bisexual people are now enjoying more freedoms and rights than ever before.

User comments : 0