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Novel mechanism for control of gene expression revealed
Date:3/4/2011

causing juvenile-onset forms of ALS and ataxia, two neuromuscular degenerative diseases.

In their newest research, Levin and Kim show that the discovered attenuation mechanism is evolutionarily conserved in humans. "The findings of this research have broad implications that translate to human cells," said Levin. "We know that when the key yeast proteins are replaced by their human counterparts, they are able to engage in the same interactions to exert control over attenuation."

Levin believes that attenuation is actually a widespread phenomenon. "Approximately 10% of yeast genes appear to be under attenuation control, which suggests that it may also be common in humans," said Levin. "This opens the door to the possibility of new approaches to therapeutic gene silencing, now that we know transcriptional attenuation operates in eukaryotic cells and that it's a regulated process."


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Contact: Gina DiGravio
gina.digravio@bmc.org
617-638-8480
Boston University Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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