Navigation Links
Nixing immaturity in red blood cells
Date:5/4/2008

A process of self-digestion called autophagy prompts the maturation of red blood cells. Without a protein called Nix, the cells would not effectively rid themselves of organelles called mitochondria and consequently become short-lived, leading to anemia, said researchers at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston in a report that appears online today in the journal Nature.

Its changed our thinking on autophagy, said Dr. Jin Wang, assistant professor of immunology at BCM and senior author of the report. During autophagy, the cell forms an envelope or vesicle around components of the cell that need to be degraded and removed. The vesicle then fuses with a cellular component called a lysosome that degrades its contents. The inclusion of components in the cell by autophagy vesicles was generally considered to be nonspecific.

This is not a random process, said Wang. Nix is instructing the cell to get rid of these mitochondria.

Nix accomplishes this task by disrupting the mitochondrial membrane potential (represented by difference in voltage across the inner membrane of the mitochondria. The interior is negative and the outside positive. The difference generates a force that drives the synthesis of ATP, the cells energy molecule).

We think the finding is not limited to the clearance of mitochondria in red blood cells, said Wang. When other cells get old or stressed, their organelles may become damaged and need to be cleared by autophagy for quality control. If the cells lack such quality controls, they might have problems that result in aging, cancer and neurodegenerative diseases.

It helps get rid of old or damaged mitochondria, he said. It is a way to keep the cell functioning without going through programmed cell death (apoptosis).

Such specific regulation of autophagy may also be important for cell types in the muscle, brain and pancreas, said Dr. Min Chen, assistant professor of immunology at BCM and a corresponding author of this work. The next step is to identify proteins interacting with Nix for mitochondrial quality control by autophagy. Other factors may also regulate this process in addition to Nix, said Hector Sandoval, a BCM graduate student who is the first author of this paper.


'/>"/>

Contact: Dipali Pathak
pathak@bcm.edu
713-798-4710
Baylor College of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. UF scientists discover compound that could lead to new blood pressure drugs
2. Genetic breakthrough explains dangerously high blood glucose levels
3. UCLA stem cell researchers create heart and blood cells from reprogrammed skin cells
4. Hyperviscous fluids: Better treatment for severe blood loss
5. Clumps of red and white blood cells may contribute to sickle cell disease
6. Menstrual blood -- a valuable source of multipotential stem cells?
7. Effective cancer immune therapy through order in the blood vessels
8. Bloodless worm sheds light on human blood, iron deficiency
9. Mental stress reduces blood flow to the heart in patients with gene variation
10. Backpack straps can decrease blood flow in the shoulder and arm
11. Yale study shows how rare genes have big impact on blood pressure
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/2/2016)... June 2, 2016   The Weather Company , an ... Ads, an industry-first capability in which consumers will be able ... to ask questions via voice or text and receive relevant ... Marketers have long sought an advertising solution ... can be personal, relevant and valuable; and can scale across ...
(Date:5/20/2016)... , May 20, 2016  VoiceIt is excited ... with VoicePass. By working together, VoiceIt ...  Because VoiceIt and VoicePass take slightly different approaches ... increases both security and usability. ... about this new partnership. "This marketing ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... Lithuania , May 3, 2016  Neurotechnology, ... released the MegaMatcher Automated Biometric Identification System ... of large-scale multi-biometric projects. MegaMatcher ABIS can process ... accuracy using any combination of fingerprint, face or ... MegaMatcher SDK and MegaMatcher Accelerator ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... WI (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... supplements, is pleased to announce the launch of their brand, UP4™ Probiotics, into ... for over 35 years, is proud to add Target to its list of ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 /PRNewswire/ - FACIT has announced the creation ... biotechnology company, Propellon Therapeutics Inc. ("Propellon" or "the ... a portfolio of first-in-class WDR5 inhibitors for the ... WDR5 represent an exciting class of therapies, possessing ... for cancer patients. Substantial advances have been achieved ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... -- Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital has signed a ... serve as their official health care provider. As ... provide sponsorship support, athletic training services, and most ... athletes and families. "We are excited ... to bring Houston Methodist quality services and programs ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016  The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) is pleased ... and faster cures for prostate cancer. Members of the Class of 2016 were ... Read More About the Class of 2016 PCF Young ... ... ...
Breaking Biology Technology: