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Swiss researchers develop all-in-one remote control gene expression tool

by feeding the animal an antibiotic. Likewise genes that express pathogenic proteins can be conditionally silenced, allowing researchers to study possible new therapeutic approaches.

In cancer research this tool could be used to study gene function in tumor cells and for generating in vivo tumor models for drug screening and delivery.

In another application, dying cells (such as neurons) can be rescued by introducing a gene that expresses a growth factor. Thanks to the remote control carried in the lentivirus the expression of this growth factor can now be turned off when the desired effect is achieved, thus preventing unharnessed growth ?otherwise known as cancer.

"It's an extremely polymorphic tool, useful in testing therapies and in preclinical studies," says Trono. "Using it we can control the gene expression in vivo in an extraordinary and sensitive way."


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Source:Ecole Polytechnique F茅d茅rale de Lausanne


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