Navigation Links
Iron Deficiency Sparks Dramatic Changes In Gene Expression

Researchers at Duke University Medical Center have demonstrated for the first time what happens inside a cell when it is deprived of the essential nutrient iron. Iron is found abundantly in red meats, shellfish dried fruits, whole grains, spinach, seeds and other foods. Their study in yeast cells demonstrated that iron-starved cells preserve the little iron they possess by shutting down the major iron users in order to maintain the cell's essential functions, said Dennis J. Thiele, Ph.D., professor of Pharmacology and Cancer Biology at Duke. He said their discovery could aid in the diagnosis and ultimately the treatment of serious disorders caused by low iron levels. Results of his study, funded by the National Institutes of Health, are published in the Jan. 14, 2005, issue of the journal Cell.

Iron deficiency is the most prevalent and severe nutritional disorder world wide, affecting more than 2 billion people. The most widely recognized symptom is anemia, in which too few red blood cells are produced, and the body is deprived of oxygen needed for energy metabolism. Iron deficiency causes wide-ranging symptoms from fatigue, weakness and cognitive deficits to serious heart complications and developmental disorders. Iron deficiency also contributes to the pathology of hereditary blood disorders, Parkinson's disease and certain cancers and develops during a number of chronic diseases, the researchers said. Until now, however, a cell's response to iron deprivation was poorly understood. In the Duke study, Thiele and his Duke colleagues at the Sarah W. Stedman Nutrition and Metabolism Center demonstrated that the activity of more than 80 different genes was dramatically reduced in response to iron deprivation. The function of many of these genes is unknown, meaning that side effects from iron deprivation may go unattributed to their root cause. Other genes affected by iron starvation are known to be vital in generating energy, copying the cell's genetic code and protecting the cell from free radicals and aging, said Thiele. "We discovered that iron deprivation actually reprograms the metabolism of the entire cell," said Thiele. "Literally hundreds of proteins require iron to carry out their proper function, so without this nutrient, there is a complete reorganization of how cellular processes occur." The cellular player responsible for the metabolic reprogramming is a protein called Cth2. Thiele's team found that iron-deprived cells overproduce Cth2. This protein binds to the gene expression machinery of more than 80 different genes and targets these molecules, called messenger RNA, to be destroyed or degraded. Without messenger RNA, a gene cannot translate its genetic code into proteins that carry out its intended functions. Thiele said the same scenario may occur in human cells, as well, to an even greater degree. His study was conducted in yeast cells because their genome is remarkably similar to that of a human cell. In fact, the Cth2 protein in yeast is quite similar to a family of three proteins in humans. When the human proteins are substituted in place of Cth2 in yeast, they actually assume its function in yeast cells, said Thiele. "Yeast cells illuminate for us what to look for in human cells," said Thiele. "Current diagnostic markers for iron deficiency aren't very sensitive, unless the deficiency is severe. Pinpointing the genes affected by iron deprivation should provide us with a genetic fingerprint of what patients with varying levels of iron deprivation look like." A patient's blood could easily be tested for specific diagnostic markers that would indicate his level of iron deprivation, he said. With diagnostic markers in place, physicians could translate the severity of the disease into the appropriate treatment.
'"/>

Source:DukeMedNews


Related biology news :

1. Deficiency of growth hormone and IGF-1 reduces cancer and kidney disease, but creates other problems
2. Scientists Propose Sweeping Changes to Naming of Bird Neurosystems to Acknowledge Their True Brainpower
3. FDA Announces Series of Changes to the Class of Marketed Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)
4. Methamphetamine Abuse, HIV Infection Cause Changes in Brain Structure
5. Changes to embryos can elicit change in adult fish
6. Changes in amino acids in the 1918 influenza virus cut transmission

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:6/15/2016)... New York , June 15, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... a new market report titled "Gesture Recognition Market by ... and Forecast, 2016 - 2024". According to the report, ... USD 11.60 billion in 2015 and is estimated ... reach USD 48.56 billion by 2024.  ...
(Date:6/7/2016)... -- Syngrafii Inc. and San Antonio Credit Union (SACU) ... Syngrafii,s patented LongPen™ eSignature "Wet" solution into SACU,s ... in greater convenience for SACU members and operational ... document workflow and compliance requirements. Logo ... Highlights: ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... The Weather Company , an IBM Business (NYSE: IBM ... which consumers will be able to interact with IBM Watson ... or text and receive relevant information about the product or ... long sought an advertising solution that can create a one-to-one ... valuable; and can scale across millions of interactions and touchpoints. ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - FACIT has announced ... biotechnology company, Propellon Therapeutics Inc. ("Propellon" ... commercialization of a portfolio of first-in-class WDR5 inhibitors ... such as WDR5 represent an exciting class of ... precision medicine for cancer patients. Substantial advances have ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... SANTA MONICA, Calif. , June 23, 2016  The Prostate Cancer ... to pioneer increasingly precise treatments and faster cures for prostate cancer. Members of ... 77 institutions across 15 countries. Read More About the ... ... ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... STACS DNA Inc., the sample ... the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory, has joined STACS DNA as a Field Application Specialist. ... said Jocelyn Tremblay, President and COO of STACS DNA. “In further expanding our capacity ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... LONDON , June 23, 2016 ... & Hematology Review, 2016;12(1):22-8 http://doi.org/10.17925/OHR.2016.12.01.22 ... Review , the peer-reviewed journal from touchONCOLOGY, ... the escalating cost of cancer care is placing ... a result of expensive biologic therapies. With the ...
Breaking Biology Technology: