Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Researchers Look To Imprinted Genes For Clues To Fetal Growth Restriction In Cloned Swine

Date:
July 27, 2009
Source:
North Carolina State University
Summary:
Researchers have found that intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR), which results in low birth weight and long-term deleterious health effects in cloned swine, is linked to a type of gene -- known as an imprinted gene -- found only in placental mammals.

Researchers at North Carolina State University have found that intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR), which results in low birth weight and long-term deleterious health effects in cloned swine, is linked to a type of gene - known as an imprinted gene - found only in placental mammals. Imprinted genes play an important role in the normal fetal development of all mammals, and this study could have future implications for the study of IUGR in humans.

Of the 20,000-25,000 genes in the human body, fewer than one percent, or about 100-200 genes, are "imprinted." Most genes contain a copy of both the mother's and the father's genetic information, and express proteins from both copies. Imprinted genes only make proteins from either the copy of the mother or the father. This family of genes is typically found in placental mammals, and has been linked to the flow of nutrients between the mother and the fetus.

"The theory is that paternally expressed genes extract resources from the mother in favor of the fetus, and that maternally expressed genes protect the mother from having too many resources taken away," says Dr. Jorge Piedrahita, professor of genomics at NC State. "As long as the balance is kept, everything is fine, but if one set of genes isn't working well, the offspring's size and health are affected. In the case of cloned pigs, we see a high incidence of intrauterine growth restriction, and these offspring do not do well."

Although cloned pigs have an unusually high incidence of IUGR, in other cloned mammals, such as cattle, the opposite effect occurs and the offspring tend to be too large. Since the cloning process is the same regardless of species, Piedrahita and colleagues from NC State and the U.S. Department of Agriculture set out to discover what could account for these differences in offspring sizes, and found three genes that are imprinted differently in the pig. The researchers hope that these genes can provide the key to the way imprinted genes affect fetal growth, and help them to explain what goes wrong during the cloning process.

Their findings are published in the July issue of Biology of Reproduction.

"We want to know why the response to cloning is so different for each animal species, and these pig-specific genes give us a starting point for this work," Piedrahita says. "Hopefully if we can discover the ways in which these genes help regulate the flow of resources to the fetus, we can find a way to correct problems when they occur and eliminate IUGR in clones."


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

North Carolina State University. "Researchers Look To Imprinted Genes For Clues To Fetal Growth Restriction In Cloned Swine." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 July 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090720163721.htm>.
North Carolina State University. (2009, July 27). Researchers Look To Imprinted Genes For Clues To Fetal Growth Restriction In Cloned Swine. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090720163721.htm
North Carolina State University. "Researchers Look To Imprinted Genes For Clues To Fetal Growth Restriction In Cloned Swine." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090720163721.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals 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
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
Asteroid's Timing Was 'Colossal Bad Luck' For The Dinosaurs

Asteroid's Timing Was 'Colossal Bad Luck' For The Dinosaurs

Newsy (July 28, 2014) The asteroid that killed the dinosaurs struck at the worst time for them. A new study says that if it hit earlier or later, they might've survived. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge from Nest

Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge from Nest

AP (July 27, 2014) A live-streaming webcam catches loggerhead sea turtle hatchlings emerging from a nest in the Florida Keys. (July 27) 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