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:8/1/2018)... ... July 31, 2018 , ... Prominent ... Global Conference , Awards honor late founder of Wisdom National Brands® makers of ... presented prestigious stevia awards to a renowned German professor and a prominent Belgian ...
(Date:7/31/2018)... ... 31, 2018 , ... Lifecycle Biotechnologies, a leading life science ... this role, Mr. Muzek will lead the company-wide industrial strategic business development efforts ... , With over 20 years in business development, Mr. Muzek previously served as ...
(Date:7/28/2018)... ... 2018 , ... Professor You-Lin Xu, Dean of Faculty of ... with the International Association for Wind Engineering (IAWE) Senior Award (Davenport Medal) for ... research, education, and application. Professor Xu is the first scholar in Hong Kong, ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/9/2018)... ... August 09, 2018 , ... Simpson Gumpertz & Heger ... with building owners and managers for a full-day discussion on health care and ... to Boston for the first time on Thursday, 13 September 2018, at Harvard ...
(Date:7/31/2018)... ... July 31, 2018 , ... ... marked molecular quality controls to its expanding CE/IVD product inventory. , “We are ... expanding CE/IVD QC offerings. ZeptoMetrix remains entirely committed to fully support and provide ...
(Date:7/25/2018)... (PRWEB) , ... July 25, 2018 , ... ... a biofield energy treated proprietary nutraceutical to combat inflammation and autoimmune disorders. ... as, immune function response. The following data was reported:, ...
(Date:7/24/2018)... Neb. (PRWEB) , ... July 23, 2018 , ... ... impact of a biofield energy treated nutraceutical to increase immunity and improve anti-inflammatory, ... as, immune function response assessed in the preclinical research were significantly reduced. Results ...
Breaking Biology Technology: