Navigation Links
Throwing the micro switch: MicroRNA may link smoking risk gene to neurobiology of addiction
Date:4/23/2009

Philadelphia, PA, April 23, 2009 During the past several years, significant progress has been made in identifying susceptibility genes for nicotine dependence through genetic linkage and association analyses. Although a large number of genes have been associated with tobacco smoking, only a very limited number of genetic variants are considered to be causative. How to find these functional variants and then characterize them remains challenging in the field of human genetics.

In the traditional genetic dogma, DNA codes for RNA and RNA codes for protein. But what about the leftover bits of RNA that do not seem to code for proteins? One type of RNA 'leftovers' is the microRNAs. These small pieces of RNA do not code for proteins. Instead, they influence the extent to which other genes are expressed, i.e., the rate or extent of conversion of DNA to RNA. To date, there have been relatively few examples of the direct involvement of microRNAs in psychiatric disorders.

However, a study scheduled for publication in the April 15th issue of Biological Psychiatry (http://www.elsevier.com/locate/biopsychiat), published by Elsevier, has now provided new insights into how variation in the dopamine D1 receptor gene (DRD1) may be linked to the risk for nicotine dependence through microRNA action.

Huang and Li, researchers at the University of Virginia, previously showed that the DRD1 gene, one of the major receptors in the brain that mediate the actions of the neurotransmitter dopamine, is associated with tobacco dependence, and that two alleles of a variant within this gene are differentially expressed. "In the current study, we demonstrated that such differential expression of DRD1 is regulated by microRNA miR-504," explains Dr. Li.

In other words, this microRNA seems to directly influence how these genetic variations are expressed within the DRD1 gene, thereby influencing ones risk to developing nicotine dependence. John Krystal, M.D., Editor of Biological Psychiatry, comments: "This study provides an interesting example of how variation in a gene that contributes to the risk of smoking may do so by throwing a 'micro switch' and thereby increasing the expression of the dopamine 1 receptor gene."


'/>"/>

Contact: Jayne Dawkins
ja.dawkins@elsevier.com
215-239-3674
Elsevier
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. CRis New Vectra(TM) Platform Rapidly Analyzes Tissue Slides and Microarrays in Brightfield and Fluorescence
2. InteRNA Technologies and Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre to Develop microRNA-based Therapeutics for Prostate Cancer
3. Mayo Clinic and Microsoft Deliver a Powerful and Personalized Consumer Solution for Managing Health
4. Penny Imaging Exchange, Inc. Outlines the Trend & Economics of Scanning Microfilm
5. Penny Imaging Exchange, Inc. Acquires New Technology to Capture Medical Records from Microfiche
6. NotifySync™ Provides BlackBerry a Direct Connection to Any Email Platform Supporting Microsoft ActiveSync
7. Aspirin Linked to Brain Microbleeds
8. ASAP Systems now Offers Flexible Payment Options for its Barcode Inventory, Asset and Evidence Tracking Solutions Through a Strategic Microsoft Financing™ Partnership
9. Resurrection Health Care Increases Sales Productivity by 50% Since Implementing Microsoft Dynamics CRM
10. Microsoft and Microsoft Health Users Group Announce Winners of Microsoft HUG 2009 Innovation Awards
11. Microsoft Windows Embedded Announces Winner of SPARKs Will Fly Developer Contest
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... ... A new collaboration will give more researchers access to the largest and oldest ... SAS will provide researchers worldwide with data management and analytics tools to explore 45 ... The DCRI and SAS share the goal of greater transparency and openness in research ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 04, 2016 , ... ... April 2016. SS&A teamed up with one of the top website design companies ... portal contains informative legal articles related to the law firm's main practice areas. ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... May 04, 2016 , ... Francesca Loparco, Co-Founder of Queen City Dream Cars, ... same-day LASIK procedure at Christenbury Eye Center. The entrepreneur struggled with her ... surgery the same day as her in-office consultation and eye exam. Francesca’s eyesight was ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... May 04, 2016 , ... Advanced Spine & Sport ... restore its patients’ health, is hosting a free seminar on stem cell injections. The ... at Advanced Spine & Sport, 4601 Telephone Road, Suite 110, Ventura, CA. There are ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Mediware Information Systems, Inc . has ... helps blood and marrow transplant (BMT) programs meet compliance and accreditation standards while ... to enhance core application features. These enhancements are designed to help BMT programs ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/4/2016)... , May 4, 2016 ... of the  "Global Acute Ischemic Stroke Market ... to their offering.       (Logo: ... Global Acute Ischemic Stroke Market and Competitive ... Acute Ischemic Stroke pipeline products, Acute Ischemic ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... May 3, 2016 BioNovus Innovations LLC ... for Advancing Medical Innovation (IAMI) today announced a ... diagnostics and medical devices. An agreement ... rights to license, develop and commercialize medical innovations ... "This partnership represents a significant advance in ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... 3, 2016   BIOTRONIK , a leader ... Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of Iperia ... heart failure patients with access to diagnostic magnetic ... remote monitoring with daily automatic transmission and closed ... in response to physiological demands. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: