Navigation Links
Study offers new clues about hereditary spastic paraplegia
Date:7/8/2011

HOUSTON -- (July 8, 2011) -- New research from Rice University and Italy's Eugenio Medea Scientific Institute is yielding clues about hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP), a group of inherited neurological disorders that affect about 20,000 people in the United States. A study in the July 5 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences offers the first detailed account of the biochemical workings of atlastin, a protein produced by one of the genes linked to HSP.

The primary symptoms of HSP are progressive spasticity and weakness of the leg and hip muscles. This results from the slow degeneration of the nerves that carry signals from the spinal column to the legs, feet and toes. While scientists know that HSP can result from more than two dozen different genetic mutations, they don't know how the mutations cause nerve degeneration.

"We discovered a couple of years ago that atlastin plays a key role in building and maintaining an important internal compartment of healthy cells called the endoplasmic reticulum," said Rice biochemist James McNew, lead co-author of the new study. "HSP is known to primarily affect long nerve cells that can stretch from the lower back all the way to the base of the leg. It appears that atlastin plays a particularly crucial role in maintaining the health of these cells, and we want to know why."

McNew, associate professor of biochemistry and cell biology at Rice, and Andrea Daga, a scientist at the Medea Institute, determined in 2009 that atlastin was one of the rare breed of proteins that can cause membrane fusion.

"Membrane fusion is a fundamental process involved in many cell functions, but only a few proteins can initiate it," McNew said. "Until 2009, we thought all membrane fusion proteins operated in the same basic way. Atlastin was completely different because it's an enzyme that utilizes chemical energy to drive fusion. We really had to start from scratch to determine h
'/>"/>

Contact: Jade Boyd
jadeboyd@rice.edu
713-348-6778
Rice University
Source:Eurekalert  

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Study suggests new strategy to prevent infertility, birth defects
2. UTMB-led researchers awarded $7.8 million for Gulf spill study
3. LSUHSC conducts landmark study of mid, long-term health effects of oil exposure
4. Nordic study shows marginally higher but overall low risk of stillbirth in ART children
5. First whole-genome lung cancer study by TGen and Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center set for conference
6. Twin study shows lifestyle, diet can significantly influence course of macular degeneration
7. Study: Preventive use of one form of natural vitamin E may reduce stroke damage
8. Behavioral treatment for migraines a cost-effective alternative to meds, study finds
9. ARS and cooperators study cotton gin dust emissions
10. Study finds pregnancy and birth environment may affect development of autism in twins
11. Study shows answers for treating obesity-related diseases may reside in fat tissue
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Study offers new clues about hereditary spastic paraplegia
(Date:9/17/2014)... complex social behavior by studying nonhuman mammals and primates, ... With their unusually large brains relative to their body ... social environment---not merely in a large population of cooperating ... dynamic setting of alliances and competitors. The same is ... and social carnivores, like hyenas and lions. , A ...
(Date:9/16/2014)... NEW YORK (17 September, 2014)More than $100 trillion ... megatons of annual carbon dioxide (CO2)a 40 percent ... by 2050 if the world expands public transportation, ... new report released by the University of California, ... Policy (ITDP). , Further, an estimated 1.4 ...
(Date:9/16/2014)... -- Each tree species has its own bacterial identity. ... colleagues from other institutions who studied the genetic fingerprints ... a Panamanian island. , "This study demonstrates for the ... and with different ecological strategies possess very different microbial ... Kembel, a former postdoctoral researcher in the UO,s Institute ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Being social: Learning from the behavior of birds 2Global shift away from cars saves US$100 trillion, eliminates 1,700 MT of CO2 pollution 2Global shift away from cars saves US$100 trillion, eliminates 1,700 MT of CO2 pollution 3Global shift away from cars saves US$100 trillion, eliminates 1,700 MT of CO2 pollution 4Global shift away from cars saves US$100 trillion, eliminates 1,700 MT of CO2 pollution 5Microbiome research shows each tree species has a unique bacterial identity 2
... MADISON, WI, OCTOBER 12, 2009 Areas of ... and recreational (not grazing) purposes, i.e. "urban grasslands" are ... are over 150,000 km2of urban grasslands in the U.S. ... about nutrient runoff to streams, lakes, and estuaries and ...
... by a research group at the Sahlgrenska Academy at the ... of glandular cancer usually in the head and neck and ... to quicker and better diagnosis and more effective treatment. ... Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). ...
... graphene more useful in electronics applications, Kansas State University ... graphene. Vikas Berry is a K-State assistant professor ... material only a single atom thick and discovered just ... thus controlling its electronics properties -- Berry and Kabeer ...
Cached Biology News:Nitrogen mysteries in urban grasslands 2Nitrogen mysteries in urban grasslands 3New cancer gene discovered 224-carat gold 'snowflakes' improve graphene's electrical properties 2
(Date:9/17/2014)... (PRWEB) September 17, 2014 NASA’s MESSENGER ... Valcor Engineering Corporation is proud to have one of ... The MESSENGER mission is a scientific investigation of the ... to be sent there, and has provided a vast ... Valcor’s V27200 family of latch valves utilize solenoids that ...
(Date:9/16/2014)... chin strap that can harvest energy from jaw movements ... Canada. , It is hoped that the device can ... a number of small-scale implantable or wearable electronic devices, ... and communication devices. , The first results of the ... IOP Publishing,s journal Smart Materials and Structures . ...
(Date:9/16/2014)... BlueInGreen® , a water quality ... delivering dissolved gases into liquids, announced the addition ... manufacturer’s representative firm to its sales network. H2Flow ... water and wastewater applications in the Canadian provinces ... in 1992 and serves Quebec and Ontario markets ...
(Date:9/16/2014)... , Sept. 16, 2014   Synthetic Biologics, ... developing novel anti-infective biologic and drug programs targeting ... today the completion of the Company,s Investor Day ... highlighted its irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) program, including ... (C-IBS). In the keynote presentation, ...
Breaking Biology Technology:'Smart material' chin strap harvests energy from chewing 2BlueInGreen® Expands into Canada – Signs Representative Agreement with H2Flow Equipment Inc. 2Synthetic Biologics' Statin-Class Candidate for Constipation-Predominant Irritable Bowel Syndrome Detailed at Company's Investor Day 2Synthetic Biologics' Statin-Class Candidate for Constipation-Predominant Irritable Bowel Syndrome Detailed at Company's Investor Day 3
... TSX symbol: SBS, CALGARY, Oct. 17 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ ... (TSX:SBS), today announced that it has reached an,agreement ... funding for the,development of Botaneco as an independent ... a 27-month period, beginning in the fourth,quarter of ...
... KYPH ) announced today that its stockholders approved ... MDT ) at a special,meeting of stockholders held ... Kyphon entered into a,definitive merger agreement with Medtronic, pursuant ... shares of Kyphon common stock for,$71.00 per share in ...
... employed for a variety of uses including composite materials, ... proven useful for these purposes, no one really knows ... For example, how do nanotubes and chemical functional groups ... this question could lead to improvements in future nano ...
Cached Biology Technology:Botaneco obtains $2.4 million in funding from AVAC 2Botaneco obtains $2.4 million in funding from AVAC 3Kyphon Stockholders Approve Merger with Medtronic 2Researchers measure carbon nanotube interaction 2
...
...
...
... Weight DNA Markers are suitable for sizing linear ... low-percentage agarose gels. The 13 bands consist of ... digests of Lambda DNA (cIind1ts857 Sam7). Ethidium bromide ... asterisk (8271 bp 8612 bp 12220 bp and ...
Biology Products: