Navigation Links
Immune genes adapt to parasites
Date:5/25/2009

Thank parasites for making some of our immune proteins into the inflammatory defenders they are today, according to a population genetics study that will appear in the June 8 issue of the Journal of Experimental Medicine (online May 25). The study, conducted by a team of researchers in Italy, also suggests that you might blame parasites for sculpting some of those genes into risk factors for intestinal disorders.

Parasite-driven selection leaves a footprint on our DNA in the form of mutations known as "single nucleotide polymorphisms" (SNPs). Making sure that genetic variation (in the form of multiple SNPs) is maintained within certain immune genes over time helps ensure that the host can fend off different infections in different environments.

In the new study, Matteo Fumagalli and colleagues sift through 1,052 SNPs in genes that code for immune proteins called interleukins from roughly 1000 people worldwide. Of 91 genes assessed, 44 bore signatures of evolutionary selection, meaning that the genetic variation was neither due to chance nor to the migration of populations over time. And some of that variation correlated with the diversity of parasites that live alongside humans. The data suggests that having lots of different parasites around has shaped the evolution of our interleukin genes.

In general, parasitic worms appear to have had a more powerful influence on certain interleukin genes than smaller microbes such as viruses, bacteria, and fungi. That isn't surprising, says senior author Manuela Sironi, because worms typically evolve slower than bacteria or viruses, giving their human hosts time to adapt in response. Some of the genes that were shaped by worm diversity made perfect sense, as the proteins they encode help generate the precise type of immune response required to rid the body of worms.

Other genes, however, seemed to be influenced more by the diversity of viruses, bacteria, and fungi than by that of worms. SNPs in some of these genes are known risk alleles for inflammatory bowel diseases, such as Crohn's and celiac disease. These "risky" alleles were probably maintained during evolution because they promote the kind of immune response needed to fend off viruses and bacteria. But this type of response also contributes to inflammatory bowel diseases.


'/>"/>

Contact: Amy Maxmen
amaxmen@rockefeller.edu
212-327-8393
Rockefeller University Press
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Strong immune response to new siRNA drugs in development may cause toxic side effects
2. Genetic study confirms the immune systems role in narcolepsy
3. Microparticle immune response modifier shows broad effects against recurrent or metastatic cancer
4. Device protects transplanted pancreatic cells from the immune system
5. Vitamin D may exacerbate autoimmune disease
6. New evidence explains poor infant immune response to certain vaccines, says MU researcher
7. Lombardi research: Monoclonal antibodies primed to become potent immune weapons against cancer
8. A paradigm shift in immune response regulation
9. New origin found for a critical immune response
10. HIV adapts to escape immune response
11. Frogs immune system is key in fight against killer virus
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/1/2016)... , June 1, 2016 ... in Election Administration and Criminal Identification to Boost Global ... a recently released TechSci Research report, " Global Biometrics ... Region, Competition Forecast and Opportunities, 2011 - 2021", the ... billion by 2021, on account of growing security concerns ...
(Date:5/12/2016)... 2016 WearablesResearch.com , a brand of ... results from the Q1 wave of its quarterly wearables ... consumers, receptivity to a program where they would receive ... insurance company. "We were surprised to see ... Michael LaColla , CEO of Troubadour Research, "primarily because ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... First quarter 2016:   , ... the first quarter of 2015 The gross margin was ... 18.8) and the operating margin was 40% (-13) Earnings ... flow from operations was SEK 249.9 M (21.2) , ... SEK 7,000-8,500 M. The operating margin for 2016 is ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... , June 27, 2016   Ginkgo Bioworks ... to industrial engineering, was today awarded as one ... selection of the world,s most innovative companies. Ginkgo ... scale for the real world in the nutrition, ... engineers work directly with customers including Fortune 500 ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... 23, 2016 , ... Mosio, a leader in clinical research ... Recruitment and Retention Tips.” Partnering with experienced clinical research professionals, Mosio revisits the ... tools, and strategies for clinical researchers. , “The landscape of how patients receive ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital ... Sports Association to serve as their official health ... Methodist Willowbrook will provide sponsorship support, athletic training ... association coaches, volunteers, athletes and families. ... Sports Association and to bring Houston Methodist quality ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... Supplyframe, the ... the Supplyframe Design Lab . Located in Pasadena, Calif., the Design Lab’s ... how hardware projects are designed, built and brought to market. , The Design ...
Breaking Biology Technology: