Navigation Links
Tet further revealed: Studies track protein relevant to stem cells, cancer
Date:3/30/2011

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. Last year, a research team at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill discovered one way the protein Tet 1 helps stem cells keep their pluripotencythe unique ability to become any cell type in the body. In two new studies, the team takes a broad look at the protein's location in the mouse genome, revealing a surprising dual function and offering the first genome-wide location of the protein and its product, 5-hydroxymethylcytosinedubbed the "sixth base" of DNA.

UNC biochemist Yi Zhang, PhD, whose team conducted the studies, called the findings an important step in understanding the molecular mechanisms behind cell differentiation and the development of cancer. The findings appear in two recent papers, published March 30, 2011 online in Nature and in the April 1, 2011 issue of Genes & Development.

"There is no doubt that Tet proteins are relevant to cancer," said Zhang, Kenan distinguished professor of biochemistry and biophysics. Zhang is also an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and a member of the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center. Tet proteins were initially discovered in leukemia as fusion proteins, which are commonly found in cancer cells, where they may function as oncoproteins.

In addition, Zhang said, "Tet is likely to be one of the important players for stem cell reprogramming." Learning to "reprogram" cells in the adult body to make them behave like stem cells has long been a goal for stem cell researchers; understanding how Tet proteins operate could help advance stem-cell based treatments.

Tet proteins are known to help stem cells stay pluripotent. Zhang's team analyzed Tet1's occupancy across the entire mouse embryonic stem cell genome. They found that the protein works by using a two-pronged approach to maintain the mouse embryonic stem cell state.

"On one hand, it silences the genes that are important for differentiation. On the other hand, it also activates pluripotency genes," said Zhang.

The team then focused its attention on the Tet1-catalyzed reaction product,5-hydroxymethylcytosine. 5-hydroxymethylcytosine is a modified version of cytosinethe "C" in the four main DNA bases, A, T, G, and C. 5-methylcytosine and 5-hydroxymethylcytosine have been called the fifth and sixth bases of DNA, but since 5-hydroxymethylcytosine was discovered only recently, scientists know little about it.

"Everybody is trying to understand what 5-hydroxymethylcytosine is doing," said Zhang. "Is it an intermediate, or is it an end product? What is its biological function?" Zhang's team mapped the distribution of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine across the genome, offering new insights to its role in development and disease.

"It's the first time we have the whole picture of where this new modification is in embryonic stem cells," said Zhang. "We found that its role in regulating transcription is complicated. It's not simply activating or repressing genesit depends on the context."

Like much of science, the research answers some questions while raising others. "This study is just beginning," said Zhang. Although Tet1 is known to generate 5-hydroxymethylcytosine, there are places where one exists without the other. Further investigation could reveal more about the relationship between the two and whether other enzymes may play a role. In addition, scientists need to examine how Tet1 and 5-hydroxymethylcytosine function in animal models.


'/>"/>

Contact: Les Lang
llang@med.unc.edu
919-966-9366
University of North Carolina School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Pharmacokinetic/Pharmacodynamic Data Support Further Development of Tobiras Next-Generation CCR5 Receptor Antagonist
2. Experts call for further research into the relationship between insulin therapy and cancer
3. Researchers find further evidence linking Epstein-Barr virus and risk of multiple sclerosis
4. ENT and Allergy Associates Welcomes Tamekia L. Wakefield, MD, Further Reinforcing its Pediatric Sinus Expertise and Capabilities in Queens
5. New findings further clarify breast cancer risk with hormone therapy
6. Men With Low PSA at 60 Might Not Need Further Screening
7. Adding monounsaturated fats to a low-cholesterol diet can further improve levels
8. Healthiest Fast Foods Revealed: Just in Time for the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16, Healthline.com Debuts Munchie Madness
9. UC studies show marijuana has therapeutic value, reports to legislature
10. Second Dose of Gene Therapy for Inherited Blindness Proves Safe in Animal Studies
11. Studies Detail Possible Benefits of omega-3 Fatty Acids for Dogs With Arthritis
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Tet further revealed: Studies track protein relevant to stem cells, cancer
(Date:2/7/2016)... ... February 07, 2016 , ... Dr. Todd Hobgood , ... medical and surgical expertise. Technically known as deoxycholic acid or previously as ATX-101, ... non-surgical alternative for reduction of fat below the chin (aka the “double chin”). ...
(Date:2/6/2016)... ... , ... Shark Finds and Kevin Harrington, along with the Product ... with Belly Bands. , Having a dog is great—except when it wets every couch, ... nothing works, get Belly Bands, the easiest way to stop dogs from wetting ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... Toronto, Ontario (PRWEB) , ... February 05, 2016 ... ... today announced the availability of the company's lighter, sleeker next generation LYNX VR ... assembly plant. , Improvements in design and manufacturing not only reduce the ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... FL (PRWEB) , ... February 05, 2016 , ... ... the largest domestic franchisees of Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen restaurants, launched the 14th annual ... awareness for kids and adults with muscular dystrophy, ALS and related diseases that ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... ... February 05, 2016 , ... After years as an active staff surgeon and ... cosmetic surgeon Dr. Wayne Carman transitioned to chief of the Division of Plastic Surgery ... three-year term as chief and began a second three-year term in January of 2016. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/5/2016)... -- As people age, it is natural to be more ... tests that are linked with certain age milestones simplify ... of aging individuals, hearing health is too frequently left ... American adults who report some trouble hearing, there is ... a 2016 healthy aging priority.[1] Cochlear ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... 5, 2016 ... the "Global Musculoskeletal Partnering 2010-2016: Deal ... to their offering. --> ... the "Global Musculoskeletal Partnering 2010-2016: Deal ... to their offering. --> ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... --> --> ... the global active pharmaceuticals ingredients (APIs) market stood at ... US$185.9 bn by 2020. It is expected to expand ... The title of the report is "Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients ... by Therapeutic Area) - Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: