Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Genetic Ancestry Of African-Americans Reveals New Insights About Gene Expression

Date:
December 6, 2008
Source:
Public Library of Science
Summary:
The amount of proteins produced in cells -- a fundamental determinant of biological outcomes collectively known as gene expression -- varies in African-American individuals depending on their proportion of African or European genetic ancestry.

The amount of proteins produced in cells—a fundamental determinant of biological outcomes collectively known as gene expression—varies in African American individuals depending on their proportion of African or European genetic ancestry according to new research led by Alkes L. Price of the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, Massachusetts.

Gene expression is known to vary among individuals and to be influenced by both genetic and environmental factors. Previous studies have reported gene expression differences among human populations, but it has been suggested that this could be due to non-genetic effects. Populations of recently mixed ancestry such as African Americans, who on average inherit about 80% African and 20% European ancestry, offer a solution to this question, since individuals vary in their proportion of European ancestry while the analysis of a single population minimizes non-genetic factors.

In this study, the researchers show that gene expression levels in African Americans vary as a function of each individual's proportion of European ancestry. The differences due to ancestry (i.e. population differences between all Africans and all Europeans) were generally small—much smaller than differences between individuals within the same population; nevertheless, the authors were able to draw a distinction between effects of genetic ancestry at the location of the expressed gene (cis) and genetic ancestry elsewhere in the genome (trans). They conclude that only about 12% of heritable variation in human gene expression is due to cis regulation.

First author Alkes Price says, "It was a surprise that these conclusions could be drawn given that the differences due to genetic ancestry are so small." However, he cautioned that the results were confined to gene expression levels in a particular type of tissue known as lymphoblastoid cell lines, and have yet to be verified in other tissue types.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Price et al. Effects of cis and trans Genetic Ancestry on Gene Expression in African Americans. PLoS Genetics, 2008; 4 (12): e1000294 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1000294

Cite This Page:

Public Library of Science. "Genetic Ancestry Of African-Americans Reveals New Insights About Gene Expression." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081205094513.htm>.
Public Library of Science. (2008, December 6). Genetic Ancestry Of African-Americans Reveals New Insights About Gene Expression. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081205094513.htm
Public Library of Science. "Genetic Ancestry Of African-Americans Reveals New Insights About Gene Expression." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081205094513.htm (accessed August 2, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Texas Quintuplets Head Home

Texas Quintuplets Head Home

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 1, 2014) After four months in the hospital, the first quintuplets to be born at Baylor University Medical Center head home. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Patient Coming to U.S. for Treatment

Ebola Patient Coming to U.S. for Treatment

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 1, 2014) A U.S. aid worker infected with Ebola while working in West Africa will be treated in a high security ward at Emory University in Atlanta. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Vaccine Might Be Coming, But Where's It Been?

Ebola Vaccine Might Be Coming, But Where's It Been?

Newsy (Aug. 1, 2014) Health officials are working to fast-track a vaccine — the West-African Ebola outbreak has killed more than 700. But why didn't we already have one? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Study Links Certain Birth Control Pills To Breast Cancer

Study Links Certain Birth Control Pills To Breast Cancer

Newsy (Aug. 1, 2014) Previous studies have made the link between birth control and breast cancer, but the latest makes the link to high-estrogen oral contraceptives. 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:
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