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Just like cars, developmental genes have more than 1 way to stop
Date:2/24/2011

es, which have more genetic similarities to humans than was once thought. Based on these similarities, the team's research could soon lead to advances in human medicine.

"We like to say that fruit flies are like little people with wings; they have the same basic genetic nuts and bolts, including genetic switches and proteins," Arnosti said. "While our work is the first of its kind, it is only a small step for other scientists to begin conducting these same studies on human genes. With regards to disease, this study gives us the basic tools to look at genes in a disease state and understand what is going wrong at the genetic level."

Arnosti's research furthers the work of the GEDD, a group of MSU researchers using cutting-edge molecular approaches to understand mechanisms of gene regulation and promote excellence in training the next generation of biological researchers. One area that the group is promoting is integrated systems biology studies.

"By taking a systems biology approach, we're beginning to understand that it's not one bad gene that's responsible for causing cancer," Arnosti said. "We are starting to unravel how gene switches talk with one another as well as how a number of slightly defective genes interact to create a diseased state."


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Contact: Layne Cameron
layne.cameron@ur.msu.edu
517-353-8819
Michigan State University
Source:Eurekalert

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