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Tag: Genetic

Genomic analysis details eastern gorilla's declining genetic health

Genomic analysis details eastern gorilla's declining genetic health

Science
Dec. 27 (UPI) -- New analysis of the critically endangered Grauer's gorilla's genome suggests the species' health is suffering from a loss of genetic diversity. Scientists sequenced the genomes of several eastern gorilla specimens collected a century ago and compared the results to the genomes of modern Grauer's gorillas. The results, published Thursday in the journal Current Biology, showed Grauer's gorillas have accumulated harmful mutations as they have lost genetic diversity. "We found that the genetic diversity in Grauer's gorilla has declined significantly in just a few generations," Tom van der Valk, a doctoral student at Uppsala University in Sweden, said in a news release. Over the last several decades, poaching and habitat losses in the Democratic Republic of the Congo have led ...
New genetic cause of severe childhood epilepsy identified

New genetic cause of severe childhood epilepsy identified

Health
Oct. 18 (UPI) -- A new genetic cause of severe and difficult-to-treat childhood epilepsy syndrome has been identified, offering clues to the potential medical treatments for the rare condition, according to researchers. Researchers found spontaneous mutations in one gene, called CACNA1E, disrupt the flow of calcium in brain cells, leading to epileptic overactivity. The findings were published Thursday in the American Journal of Human Genetics. "Whether or not we can predict disease course and severity from the genetic change is a frequent question from patients, families, and clinicians," first author Dr. Katherine L. Helbig, a research genetic counselor in the Neurogenetics Program at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, wrote in a blog post. "There is some suggestion that this may at so...
Study identifies genetic mutations among children of soldiers exposed to radiation

Study identifies genetic mutations among children of soldiers exposed to radiation

Science
Oct. 5 (UPI) -- Scientists have identified a pattern of genetic mutation among the children of soldiers exposed to radar. Prior to the 1990s, most radar systems were poorly insulated. Those operating and working in close proximity to the systems were regularly exposed to the unconfined radiation. Today, the radiation emitted by radar systems is well-contained and soldiers are better protected. However, some soldiers exposed to radiation in the 1970s and 1980s -- so-called "radar soldiers" -- have experienced health problems after leaving the service. New research suggests the effects of radiation also explain genetic mutations among the children of radar soldiers. Families affected by radiation exposure have raised concerns about radiation's generation impacts, but until now, the science ...
Scientists find genetic marker to diagnose aggressive prostate cancer

Scientists find genetic marker to diagnose aggressive prostate cancer

Health
Aug. 30 (UPI) -- Scientists have found a genetic marker for aggressive prostate cancer, which ultimately could lead to a better way to detect the disease. The genetic mutation is responsible for high risk of the aggressive form of cancer, according to researchers at the University of Turku in Finland, who published their findings Wednesday in the International Journal of Cancer. No test currently exists to diagnose aggressive prostate cancer at an early stage. Prostate cancer, the most common malignancy among men in the United States, will affect approximately 11.6 percent of men during their lifetime, according the National Cancer Institute. For the aggressive prostate cancer, the 10-year survival rate for men is 26 percent, according to The Prostate Center in England. Researchers studi...
Genetic changes in blood may predict leukemia diagnosis

Genetic changes in blood may predict leukemia diagnosis

Health
July 9 (UPI) -- Studying genetic changes in blood, researchers have found a way to identify people at high risk of developing acute myeloid leukemia several years before diagnosis. In the study, published Monday in the journal Nature, researchers from around the world found changes in DNA can reveal the roots of AML in healthy people an average of 6.3 years before symptoms. The researchers hope that methods of reducing the likelihood of developing the cancer will arise with earlier detection and monitoring of those at risk of AML. "Acute myeloid leukemia often appears very suddenly in patients, so we were surprised to discover that its origins are generally detectable more than five years before the disease develops," first author Dr Grace Collord, of the Wellcome Sanger Institute and Un...