Navigation Links
Researchers Discover the Tale Behind Short Dogs
Date:7/30/2009

Dachshunds, corgis and others may trace their height to an evolutionary event

THURSDAY, July 30 (HealthDay News) -- Certain breeds of dogs may have developed distinctively short legs following a single change to the genetic code during their evolution, according to a finding that may also help explain a type of human dwarfism.

Researchers with the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) found that about 20 short-legged dog breeds, including dachshunds, corgis and basset hounds, have two copies of a gene that play a role in production of the protein fibroblast growth factor 4 (FGF4). The copies are not identical, though, as one lacks some essential parts of the DNA code, according to the study published July 16 in the online edition of Science.

"Our findings suggest that retrogenes may play a larger role in evolution than has been previously thought, especially as a source of diversity within species," study first author Heidi G. Parker, of NHGRI, said in a news release from the U.S. National Institutes of Health. "We were surprised to find that just one retrogene inserted at one point during the evolution of a species could yield such a dramatic physical trait that has been conserved over time."

Retrogenes occur when a transcription error in the creation of DNA code causes a functional, but imperfect duplicate of a gene to be inserted into the code. A type of virus, called a retrovirus, often causes the error to occur. The team theorizes that this one-time mutation may have occurred early in the breeds' transformation from wild to domesticated animals.

The retrogene in the short-legged dogs produces too much of the FGF4 growth protein, which the team believes may cause growth receptors to be switched on at the wrong time during fetal development. This may be behind the known calcification of growth plates that prevents these breeds' legs from growing, a condition known as disproportional dwarfism, or chondrodysplasia, that is distinctive to these breeds.

Humans can have a similar condition called hypochondroplasia, one of several conditions generally referred to as dwarfism. Researchers have linked two-thirds of the human cases to a different gene, but the cause of the remaining third is unknown.

"This study points to a new gene that should be investigated for its possible role in human hypochondroplasia," study author Elaine Ostrander, a senior investigator in NHGRIs Division of Intramural Research, said in the same news release. "Our findings may prove valuable to scientists studying other aspects of human growth and development. The work also underscores the value of canine studies for uncovering new biological mechanisms that are likely relevant to human disease."

More information

The Human Growth Foundation has more about growth disorders in people.



-- Kevin McKeever



SOURCE: U.S. National Institutes of Health, news release, July 2009


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Stanford researchers find culprit in aging muscles that heal poorly
2. UCLA researchers identify markers that may predict diabetes in still-healthy people
3. Mayo Clinic researchers discover new diagnostic test for detecting infection in prosthetic joints
4. Bipolar disorder relapses halved by Melbourne researchers
5. Cell that triggers symptoms in allergy attacks can also limit damage, Stanford researchers find
6. High and mighty: first common height gene identified by researchers behind obesity gene finding
7. Researchers estimate about 9 percent of US children age 8 to 15 meet criteria for having ADHD
8. Majority of 2.4 Million U.S. Children With ADHD Not Diagnosed or Consistently Treated, According to New Gold Standard Study by Cincinnati Childrens Researchers
9. Researchers develop long-lasting growth hormone
10. Jefferson immunology researchers halt lethal rabies infection in brain
11. Purdue researchers develop technology to detect cancer by scanning surface veins
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Researchers Discover the Tale Behind Short Dogs 
(Date:1/16/2017)... ... January 16, 2017 , ... Houston dentist, Dr. Behzad ... offering complimentary consultations and financing for orthodontics for a limited time. Complimentary for ... learn about their orthodontic options. Walk-in, late-evening, Saturday, and same-day appointments are available. ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... ... ... well-aware of the following facts at present:, Flu and cold ... effect on keeping this particularly bad strain of the flu away , In ... , These facts are well-known among the team at Woodard! About halfway ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... ... January 16, 2017 , ... San Francisco dentist, Dr. Ben ... in 3-D scanning device which is capable of taking digital impressions of teeth and ... such as CAD CAM restorations , in terms of speed, efficiency and patient ...
(Date:1/15/2017)... ... ... is announcing the release of an updated version of their top selling clipper, the ... wide jaws that will accommodate nails up to 4mm in thickness . Nails like ... reinforced for extra strength when pressing down on dense nails which can be a hindrance ...
(Date:1/15/2017)... , ... January 15, 2017 , ... The Gravity Vault ... in Radnor, Pennsylvania. As construction wraps up on the 14,000+ square foot climbing gym, ... Vaults sixth location, including three in New Jersey and two in New York. With ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/16/2017)... Jan. 16, 2017  Today, Analytics 4 Life (A4L), ... announced its expansion into JLABS @ Toronto ... science incubators. As a resident in the space, A4L ... device development and commercialization expertise. JLABS @ ... innovation center that provides a flexible environment for start-up ...
(Date:1/15/2017)... , January 16, 2017 Le conseil ... à base de collagène pour la régénération de tissus humains, ... poste de directeur général avec effet immédiat. ... Bill est un dirigeant ... occupé plusieurs postes de gestion générale et de direction au ...
(Date:1/13/2017)... Stock-Callers is currently reviewing the following Medical Appliances ... WMGI ), Varian Medical Systems Inc. (NYSE: VAR ... NuVasive Inc. (NASDAQ: NUVA ). These companies belong ... finish on Thursday, January 12 th , 2017, with the ... health care companies in the S&P 500 were down less ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: