Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Fruit Fly Research May Lead To Better Understanding Of Human Heart Disease

Date:
December 5, 2008
Source:
Burnham Institute
Summary:
Researchers have shown in both fruit flies and humans that genes involved in embryonic heart development are also integral to adult heart function.

Researchers at the Burnham Institute for Medical Research (Burnham) have shown in both fruit flies and humans that genes involved in embryonic heart development are also integral to adult heart function. The study, led by Rolf Bodmer, Ph.D., was published in Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences.

Dr. Bodmer's lab has discovered that in the fruit fly Drosophila, interactions between cardiac nmr genes (TBX20 in humans) and other transcription factors, are involved in regulating cardiac performance, rhythm and heart muscle structure. TBX20, along with other congenital heart disease genes, has been previously shown to be critical to the development of the embryonic heart first in flies and subsequently in mouse models. However, this study is the first indication that nmr/TBX20 also plays a role in adult heart function. These genes are highly conserved from flies to humans and Bodmer's research showed that some human individuals with structural congenital heart abnormalities, as well as problems with heart function, including arrhythmias and heart failure, also exhibited TBX20 mutations.

"These studies demonstrate that Drosophila has potential as a model system for exploring the genetics underlying human heart disease and for identifying new candidate genes that potentially cause heart disease," said Dr. Bodmer.

To make the connection between human and Drosophila heart malfunction, human subjects with structural congenital heart disease, as well as heart muscle dysfunction were examined. In 96 human subjects with clinical evidence of dilated cardiomyopathy (this causes a weakened heart that cannot pump blood efficiently), DNA analysis identified three different variants of the gene TBX20, suggesting TBX20 may be involved in the development of cardiomyopathy. In addition, TBX20 variants were identified in four children with atrial septal defects.

This research was funded by grants from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health.


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

Burnham Institute. "Fruit Fly Research May Lead To Better Understanding Of Human Heart Disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081202115652.htm>.
Burnham Institute. (2008, December 5). Fruit Fly Research May Lead To Better Understanding Of Human Heart Disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081202115652.htm
Burnham Institute. "Fruit Fly Research May Lead To Better Understanding Of Human Heart Disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081202115652.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

AP (July 28, 2014) West African nations and international health organizations are working to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. It's one of the deadliest diseases known to man, but the CDC says it's unlikely to spread in the U.S. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Reuters - US Online Video (July 28, 2014) Two American aid workers in Liberia test positive for Ebola while working to combat the deadliest outbreak of the virus ever. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
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:
from the past week

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