Navigation Links
Molecular messengers perform a crucial role in the ability of injured nerve cells to heal themselves

Weizmann Institute findings might advance search for new therapies for injured nerve fibers. Long distance messengers star in many heroic tales, perhaps the most famous being the one about the runner who carried the news about the victory of the Greeks over the Persians in the fateful battle of Marathon. A team of researchers at the Weizmann Institute of Science has now discovered how molecular messengers perform a crucial role in the ability of injured nerve cells to heal themselves.

A nerve cell has a cell body and a long extension, called an axon, which in humans can reach up to one meter in length. Nerve cells belonging to the peripheral nervous system can regrow when their axons are damaged. But how does the damaged axon inform the cell body that it must start producing vital proteins for the healing? That's precisely where the molecular messengers, proteins called Erk-1 and Erk-2, enter the picture. When the axon is injured, these proteins bind to molecules of phosphorus. In this phosphorylated state, they can communicate to command centers in the cell, transmitting a message that activates certain genes in the cell body, which then manufactures proteins that are vital for the healing of the injured axon. The problem is that the messengers must transmit their phosphorus message over a great distance along the axon, and in the course of this arduous journey can easily lose their phosphorus en route.

Dr. Michael Fainzilber and graduate students Eran Perlson and Shlomit Hanz of the Weizmann Institute's Biological Chemistry Department found that the Erk messengers, together with their phosphorus message, bind to a special molecule called vimentin, which protects them from dismantling or loss of the phosphorus. Vimentin links up to motor proteins that carry the message along the axon, and thanks to this linkage and protection, the messengers can safely transmit their message, thus bringing the injured axon's call for help to the cell body. The study will be published in the March 3'rd issue of Neuron. The scientists hope that these findings might advance the future search for new therapies for injured nerve fibers.

###

The research team also included Prof. Rony Seger of the Biological Regulation Department, Prof. Michael Elbaum of the Materials and Interfaces Department, graduate students Keren Ben Yaakov and Yael Segal-Ruder of the Biological Chemistry Department, and postdoctoral fellow Dr. Daphna Frenkiel-Krispin of the Materials and Interfaces Department.

Dr. Michael Fainzilber's research is supported by the Y. Leon Benoziyo Institute for Molecular Medicine; Mr. and Mrs. Alan Fischer, Larchmont, NY; the Abisch Frenkel Foundation for the Promotion of Life Sciences; the Irwin Green Alzheimer's Research Fund and the Buddy Taub Foundation.

Dr. Fainzilber is the incumbent of the Daniel E. Koshland Sr. Career Development Chair.


'"/>

Source:Weizmann Institute


Related biology news :

1. Molecular biology fills gaps in knowledge of bat evolution
2. Molecular machine may lead to new drugs to combat human diseases
3. Molecular Motors Cooperate In Moving Cellular Cargo, Study Shows
4. Molecular models advance the fight against malaria
5. Molecular fossils uncover link between viruses and the immune system
6. Molecular thermometers on skin cells detect heat and camphor
7. Molecular steps involved in the creation of gene-silencing microRNAs identified
8. Molecular miners find pain relief drugs from the sea
9. Molecular mechanism of feather formation found
10. Molecular trigger for Huntingtons disease found
11. Molecular Partners Required For Appropriate Neuronal Gene Repression
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:12/20/2016)... , Dec. 20, 2016 The ... sharing, rental and leasing is stoking significant interest ... radio frequency technology, Bluetooth low energy (BLE), biometrics ... as the next wave of wireless technologies in ... access system to advanced access systems opens the ...
(Date:12/16/2016)... , Dec. 16, 2016 The global wearable medical ... 12.14 billion by 2021 from USD 5.31 billion in 2016, at ... ... mainly driven by technological advancements in medical devices, launch of a ... preference for wireless connectivity among healthcare providers, and increasing focus on ...
(Date:12/15/2016)... Mich. , Dec. 15, 2016  There is ... car doors or starting the engine. Continental will demonstrate ... Las Vegas . Through the combination ... Start and Entry) and biometric elements, the international technology ... of vehicle personalization and authentication. "The integration ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/11/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... January 11, 2017 , ... ... international society for optics and photonics , are commending the U.S. Congress and ... the signing Friday by the President of the American Innovation and Competitiveness Act ...
(Date:1/11/2017)... Ca (PRWEB) , ... January 11, 2017 , ... ... in pathogens are observed in clinical settings, it is becoming increasingly clear that ... An over-reliance on culture-based methods, the standard in the study of clinical resistance, ...
(Date:1/11/2017)... PA (PRWEB) , ... January 11, 2017 , ... ... entrepreneur can make all the difference when navigating the challenges young businesses face. ... tap into the extensive expertise and experience of Geoff DiMasi, Founder and Principal ...
(Date:1/11/2017)... ... January 11, 2017 , ... Advanced Polymer Monitoring Technologies (APMT) ... Bartylla will lead European initiatives for APMT’s product lines serving polymer and biopharmaceutical ... to European manufacturers and researchers. Bernhard brings significant experience in our application areas ...
Breaking Biology Technology: