Scientists at the Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG) in Barcelona shed light on how the genome organizes groups of genes linked to specific processes, like the release of toxins
They carried out a study on fungi and found more than 11,000 gene families grouped together or near each other in the genome
The results are published today in the journal Nature Microbiology
Researchers at IRB Barcelona and IAL Santa Fe in Argentina have found the cell-signalling factor TNFα to be critical for coordinated organ growth in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster.
Regulated by the tumour suppressor p53, TNFα enables the tissue to detect and reverse growth defects.
These findings allow researchers to better understand tissue development better, and they are also relevant for diseases such as cancer.
Two studies by IRB Barcelona and IBMB-CSIC published in Nature Communications reveal the portal structure of the Epstein-Barr virus and bacteriophage T7.
No treatment is currently available for the infection caused by the Epstein-Barr virus, which, in addition to causing mononucleosis, leads to various types of cancer.
The studies were done in collaboration with CNB-CSIC and the University of Oxford.
PNAS publishes a study by the team headed by ICREA research professor Lluís Ribas. The study demonstrates that transfer RNA genes are expressed in a differential manner in human tissue in order to form smaller fragments, whose function is still unknown.
Understanding the biological function of these fragments and the key role that the transfer RNA gene plays in the regulation of their levels will pave the way to improve, alter or inhibit their activity.
The team headed by ICREA researcher, Lluís Ribas, has published a study in Cell Report describing a functional network that coordinates protein synthesis and DNA replication in animal mitochondria.
These findings contribute to our understanding of the mechanisms involved in mitochondrial dysregulation associated with diseases such as MELAS and MERRF and may help to identify new therapeutic approaches.
The study reveals the opening and closing mechanism of the portal protein during the maturation of the viral capsid, the structure that carries the genetic material of the virus.
The researchers have combined cryomicroscopy and crystallography techniques to study these viruses that infect bacteria.
An understanding of the molecular basis of differences in the incidence and survival of cancer between men and women may allow the discovery of specific and more effective treatments.
The study, published in Science Advances, compares the brain tumours of male and female flies at the molecular level and identifies proteins responsible for the different degree of aggressiveness.
Activation of the chaperone protein Hsp70 leads to a decrease in the formation of androgen receptor aggregates, which give rise to muscular atrophy in patients with Kennedy´s disease, a rare condition for which no treatment is available.
The results may also be useful in the search for a treatment for castration-resistant prostate cancer, a disease that causes 30,000 death a year in Europe and for which there is no treatment.
The study, which has been published in Nature Communications, is a collaboration with the University of California San Francisco and the University of Michigan.
Ángel R. Nebreda’s team (IRB Barcelona) publishes a study in the journal Nature Communications addressing the role of the p38 protein in angiogenesis—the formation of new blood vessels—a critical process that fuels tumour cells and allows them to grow and eventually develop metastases.
A greater understanding of how new blood vessel formation is regulated could help to improve chemotherapy treatments for cancer, as well as to develop more efficient angiogenic therapies for other diseases.
In a study published in Cell Reports,the scientists inhibited the capacity of RAS to block cell death, thus eliminating malignant tumours without affecting the development of organs.
The results of the study pave the way to combining irradiation treatments with the administration of RAS pathway inhibitors to eliminate tumour cells.