Navigation Links
Tibetans' Genes Help Them Thrive at High Altitudes
Date:5/13/2010

Researchers isolate unique DNA that help residents cope with lower-oxygen environment

THURSDAY, May 13 (HealthDay News) -- How are Tibetans able to thrive in the oxygen-thin high altitudes of the Tibet highlands when non-residents find the environment hard to endure? It's all in the genes, researchers say.

Thousands of years of natural selection have allowed Tibetan highlanders to evolve 10 unique oxygen-processing genes that help them avoid the sometimes life-threatening complications that can accompany high-altitude exposure, a new study has found.

The study is published online May 13 in ScienceExpress, and is the product of a cooperative effort launched by American and Chinese researchers from the University of Utah School of Medicine and Qinghai University Medical School.

The oxygen-deprived environs of high-altitude regions can give rise to severe lung and brain complications, the authors noted. Even professional mountaineers are at risk for experiencing "polycythemia," in which the body manufactures too many red blood cells in reaction to oxygen deprivation.

Swelling of the lungs and brain, along with high blood pressure of the lung vessels can trigger respiratory failure, which can be deadly. Yet the research team noted that Tibetan highlanders do not experience any such medical hardships.

To find out why, the investigators analyzed DNA samples from 31 Tibetan residents of a village located at 14,720 feet above sea level.

After comparing the villagers DNA with samples taken from people living in lower elevations nearby, the team was able to isolate 10 specific genes that were found only among the high-elevation residents.

Although adaptation to high-altitude living has been observed in other regions including the Andes Mountains in South America and parts of Ethiopia, the evolved genes found among the Tibetan highlanders appear to be unique to them.

To date, the researchers have linked two of the 10 genes directly to blood-borne oxygen transportation. But they note that further study is needed, with an eye toward more genes that could play a role in high-elevation protection.

"What's unique about Tibetans is they don't develop high red blood cells counts," Dr. Josef T. Prchal, study co-author and a hematologist and professor of internal medicine at the University of Utah, said in a news release. "If we can understand this, we can develop therapies for human disease."

More information

For more on high-altitude sickness visit the American Heart Association.



SOURCE: ScienceExpress, news release, May, 13, 2010


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Small Changes in Two Genes May Trigger Breast Cancer
2. New Alzheimers Risk Genes Identified
3. Three Genes Linked to Variations in Eye Color
4. Genes Tie Blood Fat to Heart Disease
5. Trauma-induced changes to genes may lead to PTSD
6. Study links microRNA to shut-down of DNA-repair genes
7. Refined tools help pinpoint disease-causing genes
8. Spanish gene expression data promise targeting of anti-angiogenesis treatment
9. Smoking May Be in Your Genes
10. Lung Cancer Increase in Women Tied to Genes, Estrogen
11. Genesys PHO Outsources Data Center to Online Tech
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/4/2016)... , ... December 03, 2016 , ... While James Earl ... serving as host for in a show called "Front Page". One of the forthcoming ... years, breast cancer rates have plummeted in large part due to early detection. Like ...
(Date:12/4/2016)... ... December 04, 2016 , ... Patients who wish to ... advantage of a cosmetic procedure known as Carbon Dioxide (C02) Fractional Laser ... of age spots, fine lines, uneven coloration, wrinkles, scarring, skin laxity or ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... December 02, 2016 , ... Lori G. Cohen and ... will speak at the American Conference Institute’s 21st Drug & Medical Device Litigation ... Lead Sponsor of the conference. , Cohen, who chairs the firm’s Pharmaceutical, Medical Device ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... December 02, 2016 , ... More than 100 business, civic, ... to attend the UNCF Dothan-Wiregrass Mayor’s Luncheon Dec. 9, 2016. This inaugural event, ... and operating support to UNCF-member institutions, including Miles College, Oakwood University, Tuskegee University, ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... , ... The annual time frame to change Medicare health and prescription drug ... 7th. Currently-enrolled Medicare beneficiaries who are looking to switch from their current plan to ... make changes during this period order for their new policy to go into effect ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/4/2016)... 2016  Results from the Phase II SUSTAIN study ... reduced the median annual rate of sickle cell-related pain ... 2.98, p=0.010) in patients with or without hydroxyurea therapy ... being featured in the official press briefing at the ... Meeting and presented during the Plenary Scientific Session tomorrow ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... December 2, 2016 - bioLytical lanza el INSTI HIV ... la OMS     Continue Reading ... ... , , bioLytical ... anunciado hoy que está expandiendo el lanzamiento de su INSTI HIV Self Test ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... December 2, 2016 According to the ... Market Study on Automated Endoscope Reprocessors: Single Basin Automated Endoscope ... 8.6% Between 2016 and 2024 " the global automated endoscope reprocessors market was ... to expand at a CAGR of 7.2% during an eight-year ... 1,367.6 Mn by 2024. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: