Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Humans And Chimps Differ At Level Of Gene Splicing

Date:
November 15, 2007
Source:
University of Toronto
Summary:
Researchers are closer to understanding why humans differ so greatly from chimpanzees in the way they look, behave, think and fight off disease, despite having genes that are nearly 99 percent identical.

Researchers are closer to understanding why humans differ so greatly from chimpanzees in the way they look, behave, think, and fight off disease, despite having genes that are nearly 99% identical.
Credit: iStockphoto/Peter-John Freeman

Researchers are closer to understanding why humans differ so greatly from chimpanzees in the way they look, behave, think, and fight off disease, despite having genes that are nearly 99% identical.

Related Articles


Innovative research from the University of Toronto's Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research has uncovered potential new explanations for these glaring differences. In comparing brain and heart tissue from humans and chimpanzees, U of T Professor Benjamin Blencowe and his team, including graduate student researcher John Calarco, have discovered significant differences in the way genetic material is spliced to create proteins.

"It's clear that humans are very different from chimpanzees on several levels, but we wanted to find out if it could be the splicing process that accounts for some of these fundamental differences," says Blencowe, a professor with the Banting and Best Department of Medical Research and Department of Molecular Genetics.

"The surprising thing we found was that six to eight per cent of the alternative splicing events we looked at were showing differences, which is quite significant. And those genes that showed differences in splicing are associated with a range of important processes, including susceptibility to certain diseases."

Splicing is the process by which the coding regions of genes are joined to generate genetic messages that specify the production of proteins, the key structural and functional constituents of cells. Splicing can occur in alternative ways in the same genetic message to generate more than one type of protein. The new findings reveal that the alternative splicing process differs significantly between humans and chimpanzees.

The study, appearing tomorrow in the Journal of Genes and Development, could have implications for the future study of disease in humans and chimpanzees, Blencowe says.

"Identifying what makes us different can be very important to understanding why certain diseases affect one species and not the other," he says.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Toronto. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Toronto. "Humans And Chimps Differ At Level Of Gene Splicing." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 November 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071114151513.htm>.
University of Toronto. (2007, November 15). Humans And Chimps Differ At Level Of Gene Splicing. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071114151513.htm
University of Toronto. "Humans And Chimps Differ At Level Of Gene Splicing." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071114151513.htm (accessed November 23, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Late Cocoa Leaves Bitter Taste

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Late Cocoa Leaves Bitter Taste

AFP (Nov. 23, 2014) The arable district of Kenema in Sierra Leone -- at the centre of the Ebola outbreak in May -- has been under quarantine for three months as the cocoa harvest comes in. Duration: 01:32 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Anglerfish Rarely Seen In Its Habitat Will Haunt You

Anglerfish Rarely Seen In Its Habitat Will Haunt You

Newsy (Nov. 22, 2014) For the first time Monterey Bay Aquarium recorded a video of the elusive, creepy and rarely seen anglerfish. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Birds Around the World Take Flight

Birds Around the World Take Flight

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Nov. 22, 2014) An imperial eagle equipped with a camera spreads its wings over London. It's just one of the many birds making headlines in this week's "animal roundup". Jillian Kitchener reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers in Beijing discovered a gene called 5-HTA1, and carriers are reportedly 20 percent more likely to be single. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins