Breaking News
February 21, 2018 - ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Traumas Lack Realism
February 21, 2018 - Sleep quality improves with help of incontinence drug
February 21, 2018 - Scientists uncover genetic cause behind typhoid’s antibiotic resistance
February 21, 2018 - Study reveals a significant link between heavy alcohol use and dementia
February 21, 2018 - French scientists develop new wearable laser that eradicates skin conditions
February 21, 2018 - People with major depressive disorder have reduced arginine levels, study shows
February 21, 2018 - National Health Spending at $3.5 Trillion in 2017, CMS Says
February 21, 2018 - Substantial inequalities in cesarean births persist in many countries
February 21, 2018 - Early childhood immune signature predicts risk of developing asthma later on
February 21, 2018 - Stanford researchers explore how gut bacteria respond to common changes in habitat
February 21, 2018 - Household Products May Pollute the Air as Much as Your Car Does: Study
February 21, 2018 - Combo Bests Targeted Agent in mRCC
February 21, 2018 - Researchers discover brain pathway that dissociates opioid addiction from analgesia
February 21, 2018 - Scientists uncover how newly discovered gene helps grow blood vessels
February 21, 2018 - Brain’s quality control process holds clues to obesity’s roots
February 21, 2018 - Researchers to study whether menstrual cups can help prevent vaginal infections
February 21, 2018 - MS patients who feel stigmatized more likely to suffer from depression
February 21, 2018 - Vitamin D supplementation during pregnancy could protect against childhood obesity
February 21, 2018 - Lower-Quality Medical Tx Might Have Skewed Key PCI vs CABG Trials
February 21, 2018 - Love and fear are visible across the brain instead of being restricted to any brain region
February 21, 2018 - Researchers discover potential new antimalarial treatment targets
February 21, 2018 - Adults with congenital heart disease have increased risk for dementia, study finds
February 21, 2018 - Clinical trial studying type 1 diabetes reaches full enrollment
February 21, 2018 - Father’s stress affects the brain development of offspring, mice study shows
February 21, 2018 - ESRD Death Declines in Vasculitis Patients
February 21, 2018 - Taking ibuprofen for long periods found to alter human testicular physiology
February 21, 2018 - Google AI device could predict a person’s risk of a heart attack
February 20, 2018 - FDA Approves Domestic Source for Tc-99m Isotopes
February 20, 2018 - Sanofi rejects refund demand faces Philippine suit over dengue vaccine (Update)
February 20, 2018 - Researchers discover that activation of specific enzyme may help suppress tumor metastasis
February 20, 2018 - Blood or marrow transplantation survivors have higher risk of cognitive impairment
February 20, 2018 - Booze Beats Pot at Being Unhealthy: Oregon Poll
February 20, 2018 - Morning Break: ’20 Years Late’; Drugs in the Dirt; Catching Flu in the Dorm
February 20, 2018 - Another piece to the puzzle in naked mole rats’ long, cancer-free life
February 20, 2018 - Scientists identify four viruses that can produce insulin-like hormones
February 20, 2018 - New e-Health solution developed to prevent cardiovascular disease, dementia in senior citizens
February 20, 2018 - New genetic risk score could help guide screening decisions for prostate cancer
February 20, 2018 - Study finds higher risk of stroke among blacks with atrial fibrillation than whites
February 20, 2018 - Physical activity could be used as strategy for diabetes prevention
February 20, 2018 - Researchers develop sensing method for early detection of cancer and diabetes
February 20, 2018 - New wearable electronics could be game-changer for stroke rehabilitation
February 20, 2018 - Immune history influences person’s response to flu vaccine
February 20, 2018 - Research findings could help develop new drugs to prevent, treat dry eye disease
February 20, 2018 - Serenity Now! Learn to Have Patience with Patients
February 20, 2018 - Computer simulation addresses the problem of blood clotting
February 20, 2018 - Women with type 1 diabetes not protected against coronary artery disease
February 20, 2018 - Persistent bloating can be a sign of ovarian cancer, warns charity
February 20, 2018 - Trump administration proposes rule to loosen curbs on short-term health plans
February 20, 2018 - Key protein involved in epigenetic regulation of gene expression guides skin cell renewal
February 20, 2018 - Heart attack symptoms often missed in women
February 20, 2018 - Diagnosis of celiac disease takes 3.5 years for patients who do not report GI symptoms
February 20, 2018 - Study reveals functional dynamics of ion channels
February 20, 2018 - Study explores link between mortality risk and combustible tobacco use
February 20, 2018 - ‘She Trusted Me, and I’d Turned Her Away’
February 20, 2018 - AbbVie and Voyager Therapeutics collaborate to develop new treatments for tauopathies
February 20, 2018 - Fast food makes the immune system more aggressive in the long term
February 20, 2018 - Therapeutic target for glaucoma could have treatment ramifications for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s
February 20, 2018 - Overcoming Negative Reviews | Medpage Today
February 20, 2018 - MyD88—villain of allergies and asthma
February 20, 2018 - Food scientists develop rapid screening technique to detect pesticide residue in vegetables
February 20, 2018 - Lab-grown cerebellar cells may help explain how ASD develops at molecular level
February 20, 2018 - Scientists explore connection between bad sleep habits and stiff blood vessels
February 20, 2018 - New Treatment Apalutamide (Erleada) Approved for Prostate Cancer That Resists Hormone Therapy
February 20, 2018 - Do You Really Need My Signature on That?
February 20, 2018 - HIV-1 genetic diversity is higher in vaginal tract than in blood during early infection
February 20, 2018 - Diabetes does not increase work-loss years due to early retirement
February 20, 2018 - Researchers aim to find out how PTSD affects decisions of police
February 20, 2018 - UH Cleveland Medical Center explores novel treatments for uterine fibroids
February 20, 2018 - Flu Vax Efficacy 25% Against Predominant H3N2 Strain So Far
February 20, 2018 - HIV screening most optimal at 25 years of age if no risk factors
February 20, 2018 - Loyola Medicine primary care physician offers advice to minimize risk of flu
February 20, 2018 - Safe sleep recommendations for parents that may help reduce child’s risk of SUID
February 20, 2018 - Why Do So Few Docs Have Buprenorphine Waivers?
February 20, 2018 - Low levels of alcohol good for the brain
February 20, 2018 - Experimental treatment improves invisible symptoms of a man with spinal cord injury
February 20, 2018 - Myriad’s EndoPredict offers better prediction of breast cancer recurrence, analysis shows
February 20, 2018 - Researchers identify fifteen genes that determine our facial features
February 20, 2018 - Morning Break: New Health IT Player; Luxturna No Bargain; Nuclear Freakout
February 20, 2018 - How does it compare? Hospice care at home, at assisted living facility, at nursing home
February 19, 2018 - Scientists develop water-soluble warped nanographene for bioimaging
Researchers uncover new details about function of enigmatic protein

Researchers uncover new details about function of enigmatic protein

image_pdfDownload PDFimage_print

In a recent study, a research group at MedUni Vienna has published further details about the function of an enigmatic protein. The biological necessity of this protein, which can chemically alter certain building blocks of the genetic information, has been debated for quite a while. The new study now links the enzymatic action of this protein on small RNA molecules which are important for protein synthesis, to potentially far-reaching consequences for the integrity of genetic information, particularly under stress conditions.

Methyltransferases are enzymes that transfer methyl groups to certain building blocks of macromolecules such as DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid, carrier of genetic information), RNA (ribonucleic acid, transmitter of genetic information) and also proteins (products of the genetic information), and hence modulate the function of these macromolecules. The methyltransferase Dnmt2 was originally described as an enzyme that, by chemically altering the base cytosine in DNA (DNA methylation), can directly influence the packaging of genetic information thereby performing epigenetic functions.

However, it was later discovered that Dnmt2 does not mark cytosine in DNA with methyl groups, but rather cytosine in transfer RNAs (tRNAs; molecules that are essential for protein synthesis) and that this cytosine methylation impacts the stability of tRNAs and probably protein synthesis as well.

Dnmt2-like proteins occur in nearly every organism, which led to the early conclusion that these enzymes perform an important function. However, living organisms in which Dnmt2 has been deactivated, for instance by mutations, manage to survive without this methyltransferase. These observations have puzzled biologists for a long time raising the question as to why Dnmt2-like enzymes have been retained over the course of evolution in the repertoire of the genetic information from bacteria to humans.

An international study led by the Division of Cell and Developmental Biology at MedUni Vienna’s Center for Anatomy and Cell Biology has now shown that the stabilising function of Dnmt2 on tRNAs is required to guarantee the integrity of genetic information, especially during stress conditions. The researchers used Drosophila melanogaster (fruit fly) as a model organism for their study and describe in the specialist journal “Cell Reports” that without functional Dnmt2, certain regions of the genetic information are lost or can change as a result of recombination. The key indication that these problems can primarily be explained by the loss of tRNA and not DNA functions came from experiments with another evolutionarily highly conserved RNA methyltransferase (NSun2).

“Deciphering the molecular function of these RNA-modifying enzymes is an important step towards a better understanding of the role of the ‘epitranscriptome’ in establishing certain gene expression patterns,” explains lead investigator Matthias Schäfer from the Division of Cell and Developmental Biology at MedUni Vienna’s Center for Anatomy and Cell Biology. “Modulating the expression of certain genes by epigenetic manipulation or by influencing their RNA metabolism through ‘epitranscriptomic’ changes has huge medical potential.”

For example, it might be possible to specifically deactivate damaged genetic information without changing the DNA sequence containing the genetic information by means of ‘epigenetic drugs’. On the other hand, “RNA-based therapeutics are already being tested in clinical trials and we will soon know whether ‘epitranscriptomic’ changes make these medications, for example, more stable or simply allow more efficient transport into target cells or tissues, thereby making them more effective,” adds Schäfer. While epigenetics is already a future-oriented field in medicine, which promises many different possibilities for personalized therapies, the potential of ‘epitranscriptomics’ must still be further defined through continuous basic research before extending personalized therapeutic approaches with ‘epitranscriptomic’ tools.

Soure: http://www.meduniwien.ac.at

Tagged with:

About author

Related Articles