News Archive - 2010

News Archive - 2010

Apple-shaped or pear-shaped, it's partly down to your genes

Apple-shaped or pear-shaped, it's partly down to your genes

International team of scientists pins down gene variations associated with body fat distribution and obesity

A whole set of new genes associated with body fat distribution and obesity have been identified in two major studies by an international team of researchers, including the largest study yet of DNA variation across our genomes involving almost a quarter of million people.

Is explaining variation in height a tall order?

Is explaining variation in height a tall order?

Number of genetic variants associated with height shoots up to 180

Hundreds of common genetic variants across the human genome influence adult height, according to a study of over 180,000 individuals published today in the journal Nature. The study itself identifies over a hundred new variants and shows that they are not randomly-distributed , but are clustered around genes which have been previously linked to growth.

Researchers suggest human malignant malaria originated in gorillas

Researchers suggest human malignant malaria originated in gorillas

Genetic match between human-infecting and wild gorilla-infecting malaria organisms found

Researchers have shown that the most common form of human malaria originated from infected gorillas. The new study has found a nearly perfect genetic match between malaria organisms that infect humans - known as Plasmodium falciparum - and those infecting wild gorillas. The discovery contradicts earlier studies that reported the origin of malignant malaria in chimpanzees and bonobo apes. The new study is published on 23 September 2010 in the prestigious science journal, Nature.

Completed genome is first step to tackling Tasmanian devil facial tumours

Completed genome is first step to tackling Tasmanian devil facial tumours

Uncovering the mutations found in transmissible cancer in the endangered Tasmanian devil could help conservation efforts

Researchers from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and Illumina have used next generation sequencing technology to create a draft genome sequence for the endangered Tasmanian devil and will use this to find genetic mutations in the transmissible cancer that is ravaging its population.

New insights into type 1 diabetes risk

New insights into type 1 diabetes risk

European scientists identify a gene network associated with type 1 diabetes

A large international collaboration of European scientists has uncovered a gene network underlying type 1 diabetes risk. Furthermore, the scientists identified a key receptor which regulates this important genetic framework.

Finding variants in the human genome

Finding variants in the human genome

HapMap 3 points the way forward for human genetics studies

New findings show the value of genetic studies across human populations and the value of the latest DNA sequencing technologies to interrogate genetic variation. The results, from the latest phase of the international HapMap Project, are reported in Nature.

First genetic link to common migraine exposed

First genetic link to common migraine exposed

Genetic variant may increase susceptibility to migraine triggers

A world-wide collaboration of researchers has identified the first-ever genetic risk factor associated with common types of migraine. The researchers, who looked at the genetic data of more than 50,000 people, have produced new insights into the triggers for migraines attacks and they hope their research will open the door for novel therapeutics to prevent migraine attacks.

The Leena Peltonen School of Human Genomics

The Leena Peltonen School of Human Genomics

Unique School of Human Genomics is renamed in a tribute to its founder

Leading geneticist Leena Peltonen was committed to nurturing medical geneticists of the future: In 2007, she founded the Wellcome Trust School of Human Genomics. She saw the School as a unique opportunity to bring together the current generation and future stars in human genetics to provide a forum where knowledge is shared, and where the senior PhD students can learn and gain inspiration from current scientific leaders. Sadly, Leena died in March 2010.

Uncovering the heart of genetic influence on cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood

Uncovering the heart of genetic influence on cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood

Worldwide research study reveals 95 genetic risk factors that alter levels of blood fats in multiple human populations

An international collaboration has described 95 separate variations across the genome that influence levels of cholesterol and triglycerides in the bloodstream in a range of human populations. These findings, published in the 4 August issue of Nature, provide a map for future research to unravel the biological connections between the levels of these blood fats and coronary heart disease, and lay the foundation for the development of new therapeutics.

Largest study of genomes and cancer treatments releases first results

Largest study of genomes and cancer treatments releases first results

UK-US collaboration building up a database for personalised cancer treatment

The largest study to correlate genetics with response to cancer drugs releases its first results today. The researchers behind the study, based at Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center and the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, describe in this initial dataset the responses of 350 cancer samples to 18 anticancer therapeutics.

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