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Carnegie Mellon researchers discover new cell properties

chemical engineering and materials science and engineering, says that the increased stiffness of the lamina may be caused by mutant proteins self-organizing into ordered structures within the HGPS lamina.

"This could make the lamina stiffer and cause fractures in the nuclei," Islam said. The healthy lamina remains disordered and therefore less rigid.

"Once we understand what causes the lamina to stiffen, we can try to reverse or stop the problem," Dahl said. "We think this stiffening mechanism happens over time with increased protein concentration, so we need to determine the tipping point that causes real problems."

When people grow old, the walls of the cell nuclei exhibit similar problems to the HGPS nuclei, like losing their round shape and perkiness. "Our NIH collaborators have also found that the normal aged nuclei show the same structural changes as HGPS," Dahl said.


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Source:Carnegie Mellon University


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