Genetics News

A Biomarker Test For Atherosclerosis To Seek Out The Silent Killer

Furring of the arteries, atherosclerosis, is a leading cause of death across the world. Atherosclerosis leads to peripheral arterial disease, coronary heart disease, stroke and heart attacks. However, atherosclerosis is a sneaky killer - most people do not realize they have it until they have cardiovascular disease (CV). New research published in BioMed Central's open access journal BMC Medical Genomics has identified a set of biomarkers which can be used to test for early stage atherosclerosis.

Identification Of Protein Changes In Early-Onset Alzheimer's

With a lack of effective treatments for Alzheimer's, most of us would think long and hard about whether we wanted to know years in advance if we were genetically predisposed to develop the disease. For researchers, however, such knowledge is a window into Alzheimer's disease's evolution.

Understanding the biological changes that occur during the clinically "silent" stage - the years before symptoms appear - provides clues about the causes of the disease and may offer potential targets for drugs that will stop it from progressing.

Clues To Causes Of Nerve Cell Degeneration Provided By Spasticity Gene Finding

The discovery of a gene that causes a form of hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP) may provide scientists with an important insight into what causes axons, the stems of our nerve cells, to degenerate in conditions such as multiple sclerosis.

In the Journal of Clinical Investigation, an international team of scientists led by Dr Evan Reid at the University of Cambridge, and Dr Stephan Zuchner from the University of Miami, report that mutations in the gene known as 'reticulon 2' on chromosome 19 cause a form of HSP, a condition characterised by progressive stiffness and contraction (spasticity) of the legs, caused by selective and specific degeneration of axons


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