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Simplifying Complexity - New Insights Into How Genomes Work
Date:4/1/2010

Scientists know that an organism's genome is not just a list or a recipe. It's a complex system of genes and the molecules that regulate them. Building on basic studies of how complex systems function, European researchers have now found a powerful new way to predict genetic regulatory pathways.

Brussels, Belgium (PRWEB) April 1, 2010 -- Simplifying Complexity - New Insights Into How Genomes Work

As an organism develops and interacts with its environment, suites of genes are constantly being turned on and off, orchestrating every aspect of life. Researchers worldwide are trying to understand transcriptional networks, the intricate webs of genes and regulatory agents that control the growth and functioning of every organism from Escherichia coli to Homo sapiens.

The EU-funded research project GENNETEC (for GENetic NETworks Emergence and Complexity) set itself the ambitious goal of developing a deeper understanding of all complex systems and then applying those insights to living organisms, including humans.

Among GENNETEC's accomplishments is a new way to predict which transcription factors - molecules that turn genes on or off - regulate particular genes. Their findings promise to boost research into the functioning of genetic networks in general, and into the dynamics of the human genetic system in health and disease.

"We're now in a better position to understand genetic regulation in human cells, for a lower cost and in a shorter time," says François Képès, coordinator of the GENNETEC project.

Much like a pianist fingering particular keys or chords
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