Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Genes play key role in brain injury risk for premature babies

Date:
May 19, 2014
Source:
University of Edinburgh
Summary:
Premature babies' risk of brain injury is influenced by their genes, a new study suggests. Researchers have identified a link between injury to the developing brain and common variation in genes associated with schizophrenia and the metabolism of fat. The study builds on previous research, which has shown that being born prematurely -- before 37 weeks -- is a leading cause of learning and behavioral difficulties in childhood.

Premature babies' risk of brain injury is influenced by their genes, a new study suggests.

Related Articles


Researchers have identified a link between injury to the developing brain and common variation in genes associated with schizophrenia and the metabolism of fat.

The study builds on previous research, which has shown that being born prematurely -- before 37 weeks -- is a leading cause of learning and behavioral difficulties in childhood.

Around half of infants weighing less than 1500g at birth go on to experience difficulties in learning and attention at school age.

Scientists at the University of Edinburgh, Imperial College London and King's College London studied genetic samples and MRI scans of more than 80 premature infants at the time of discharge from hospital.

The tests and scans revealed that variation in the genetic code of genes known as ARVCF and FADS2 influenced the risk of brain injury on MRI in the babies.

Researchers say that future studies could look at how changes in these genes may bring about this risk of -- or resilience -- to brain injury.

Premature births account for 10 per cent of all births worldwide, according to experts.

Earlier research has shown that being born preterm is closely related to abnormal brain development and poor neurodevelopmental outcome.

However, scientists say that they do not fully understand the processes that lead to these problems in some infants.

Dr James Boardman, scientific director of the Jennifer Brown Research Laboratory at the Medical Research Council Centre for Reproductive Health at the University of Edinburgh, said: "Environmental factors such as degree of prematurity at birth and infection play a part, but, as our study has found, they are not the whole story and genetic factors have a role in conferring risk or resilience.

"We hope that our findings will lead to new understanding about the mechanisms that lead to brain injury and ultimately new neuroprotective treatment strategies for preterm babies."


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. J. P. Boardman, A. Walley, G. Ball, P. Takousis, M. L. Krishnan, L. Hughes-Carre, P. Aljabar, A. Serag, C. King, N. Merchant, L. Srinivasan, P. Froguel, J. Hajnal, D. Rueckert, S. Counsell, A. D. Edwards. Common Genetic Variants and Risk of Brain Injury After Preterm Birth. PEDIATRICS, 2014; DOI: 10.1542/peds.2013-3011

Cite This Page:

University of Edinburgh. "Genes play key role in brain injury risk for premature babies." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 May 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140519110312.htm>.
University of Edinburgh. (2014, May 19). Genes play key role in brain injury risk for premature babies. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 31, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140519110312.htm
University of Edinburgh. "Genes play key role in brain injury risk for premature babies." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140519110312.htm (accessed January 31, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

CDC: Get Vaccinated for Measles

CDC: Get Vaccinated for Measles

Reuters - US Online Video (Jan. 30, 2015) The CDC is urging people to get vaccinated for measles amid an outbreak that began at Disneyland and has now infected more than 90 people. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama To Outline New Plan For Personalized Medicine

Obama To Outline New Plan For Personalized Medicine

Newsy (Jan. 30, 2015) President Obama is expected to speak with drugmakers Friday about his Precision Medicine Initiative first introduced last week. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
NFL Concussions Down; Still on Parents' Minds

NFL Concussions Down; Still on Parents' Minds

AP (Jan. 30, 2015) The NFL announced this week that the number of game concussions dropped by a quarter over last season. Still, the dangers of the sport still weigh on players, and parents&apos; minds. (Jan. 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.S. Wants to Analyze DNA from 1 Million People

U.S. Wants to Analyze DNA from 1 Million People

Reuters - US Online Video (Jan. 30, 2015) The U.S. has proposed analyzing genetic information from more than 1 million American volunteers to learn how genetic variants affect health and disease. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
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


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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