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  Headlines -  Health & life sciences - Genomics

Last Update: Fri, 02 Dec 2016

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  Citizen scientists help shed light on European genetic heritage mystery

Photo of article One of the greatest challenges facing archaeologists and historians is to understand Man's first steps on the European continent. Such a big task almost necessitates the requirement for a big team. This is why the University of Sheffield in the United Kingdom enlisted 'citizen scientists' to help them in their crucial research into European genetic heritage. These citizen scientists were not required to have a scientific background or training, but this was balanced out by their passion for the subject. As a result citizen scientists are increasingly being empowered by the scientific community to get involved in research. The study was presented in the journal PLoS ONE.

NB: This article is more than 4 years old so the information may not be up to date.

Published: 13 September 2012


  Repopulating Europe after the Ice Age

Photo of article The world was gripped in an Ice Age around 19 000 years ago, leaving large tracts cold, dry and inhospitable. Much of northern Europe was covered by ice, northern areas of what is now the United Kingdom were covered in ice, while its south was little more than a polar desert. The Ice Age, however, eventually came to an end and as the ice retreated, Europe once again began to be populated by human beings. New research drawing in expertise from the Czech Republic, Estonia, Italy, Russia and the United Kingdom is giving us rare insight into how Europe became repopulated as the Ice Age ended. The findings were published in the American Journal of Human Genetics.

NB: This article is more than 4 years old so the information may not be up to date.

Published: 5 July 2012


  Scientists probe diabetes in Slovaks

Photo of article Monogenic diabetes is triggered by mutations of a small number of genes, resulting in disrupted insulin production. Around half of the patients suffering from monogenic diabetes seem to carry a mutation in the glucokinase (GCK) gene. To date, more than 600 GCK mutations have surfaced, and around 65% of these are missense, what experts define as a genetic change resulting in the substitution of one amino acid in a protein for another. Researchers in Slovakia and the United Kingdom have identified the minimum prevalence of GCK-monogenic diabetes among Slovaks. They sequenced GCK in 100 Slovaks with a phenotype consistent with GCK-monogenic diabetes. The team also investigated, through family and functional studies, how identified variants can cause disease. Presented in the journal PLoS ONE, the study was backed by the CEED3 ('Collaborative European effort to develop diabetes diagnostics') project, which has clinched EUR 3 million under the Health Theme of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

NB: This article is more than 4 years old so the information may not be up to date.

Published: 8 May 2012


  Scientists identify gene behind blood orange pigmentation

Photo of article Researchers in China, Italy and the United Kingdom have discovered what gene is responsible for blood orange pigmentation, and how it is controlled. The results, presented in the journal The Plant Cell, could help improve the growth of health-promoting blood oranges and lead to novel solutions for patients suffering from cardiovascular disease, obesity and diabetes. The study was partially supported by two EU-funded projects: FLORA and ATHENA. FLORA ('Flavonoids and related phenolics for healthy living using orally recommended antioxidants') received EUR 3.3 million under the 'Food quality and safety' Thematic area of the EU's Sixth Framework Programme (FP6). ATHENA ('Anthocyanin and polyphenol bioactives for health enhancement through nutritional advancement') has received almost EUR 3 million under the 'Food, agriculture and fisheries, and biotechnology' Theme of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

NB: This article is more than 4 years old so the information may not be up to date.

Published: 10 April 2012


  Low protein level triggers TAR syndrome

Photo of article A European team of scientists has discovered that thrombocytopenia with absent radii (TAR), a rare inherited blood and skeletal disorder, is triggered by low levels of the protein Y14. Presented in the journal Nature Genetics, the findings could help lead to the development of a medical exam that permits prenatal diagnosis and genetic counselling in families affected by TAR. The study was funded in part by the NETSIM ('An integrated study on three novel regulatory hubs in megakaryocytes and platelets, discovered as risk genes for myocardial infarction by a genome-wide association and platelet systems biology study') project, which is backed by a Marie Curie Action 'Networks for Initial Training' grant worth EUR 2.85 million under the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

NB: This article is more than 4 years old so the information may not be up to date.

Published: 30 March 2012


  Study probes genetics and chimp populations

Photo of article Scientists in Cameroon, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States have discovered that chimpanzee populations living in pretty close proximity are considerably more different genetically than are humans living on different continents. The study shows that genomics can play a key role in chimpanzee conservation. Presented in the journal PLoS Genetics, it was funded in part by the EUPRIM-NET ('European primate network: specialised infrastructures and procedures for biological and biomedical research') project, which clinched more than EUR 4.7 million under the Infrastructures Thematic area of the EU's Sixth Framework Programme (FP6). EUPRIM-NET allowed in particular the scientists to access samples available at the partner research infrastructures.

NB: This article is more than 4 years old so the information may not be up to date.

Published: 28 March 2012



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