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How cells change gears: New insights published in Nature Genetics
Date:4/20/2009

role in cell differentiation in white blood cells. "It's a long shot, but if you found a compound that inhibits this gene, you could make the cells begin to differentiate towards a normal monoblast line rather than continue unchecked cell proliferation," said Ravasi.

Resilient and Redundant

Based on the new research, it appears that the network of transcription factors from the human myeloid leukemia cell line is redundant and resilient, explained Ravasi.

The researchers turned-off or "knocked down" 52 transcription factors, one at a time, in order to study their individual role within the network. Most of the single knock-downs did not result in changes to cell differentiation or cell shape.

"The transcriptional network for this cell type appears quite redundant which likely makes the network resilient to mutations or environmental agents that could interfere with transcription factor function," said Ravasi. "My guess is that we will find similar redundancy in the transcription networks of other cell lines, and in the transcription networks that regulate other aspects of cell function, but we can't say that from these data."


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Contact: Daniel Kane
dbkane@ucsd.edu
858-534-3262
University of California - San Diego
Source:Eurekalert  

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