" "
Satellite Banner
Genomics
Scientific Community
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

Epigenetic Control of Cardiogenesis

Published: Thursday, January 31, 2013
Last Updated: Thursday, January 31, 2013
Bookmark and Share
Non-coding RNA is essential for normal embryonic cardiogenesis.

Many different tissues and organs form from pluripotent stem cells during embryonic development. To date it had been known that these processes are controlled by transcription factors for specific tissues. Scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics in Berlin, in collaboration with colleagues at MIT and the Broad Institute in Boston, have now been able to demonstrate that RNA molecules, which do not act as templates for protein synthesis, participate in these processes as well. The scientists knocked down a gene for long non-coding RNA molecules (lncRNA) and thereby disrupted the development of the heart to an extent that was lethal to the embryos. Genesis of the ventral body wall was also impaired. It became apparent that the lncRNA participates in controlling transcription factors that themselves are responsible for controlling tissue- and organogenesis. The lncRNA itself thus acts as a modulating factor in these processes.

RNA molecules more than 300 nucleotides long and not exhibiting any protein-coding read frames are denoted as long non-coding RNA. They are known to interact with histone-modifying protein complexes that control the activation state of genes (activatable, active, or repressed), as well as influencing the level of their activity. This occurs, for example, through the transfer of methyl groups to histones, the DNA-packaging proteins. Modifications to the histones such as these can be copied during cell division and thus promulgate the activation state of genes from cell to cell across several stages of differentiation.

Max Planck scientists led by Bernhard Herrmann have proven for the first time that lncRNAs may also be indispensable for embryonic development. This was previously known primarily for transcription factors. They discovered an lncRNA, termed Fendrr, which is specifically formed in the progenitor cells of the heart and ventral body wall. After knocking down Fendrr in a mouse, the heart and ventral body wall were malformed, which was lethal to the embryos. The malformations first arose, however, several days after Fendrr had already been knocked down in the progenitor cells. In the case of transcription factors, the malformations appear, in contrast, after their inactivation for cells in which the gene is normally active.

This delay between the expression of the Fendrr-RNA and the appearance of the malformation can be explained by the specific effect of this new class of regulators. They influence the epigenetic control of target genes, including important transcription factors, namely by binding to histone-modifying protein complexes. Thus, they influence the fate of the descendants of cells in which they themselves were only briefly active.

The scientists now hope to locate further lncRNAs that control cardiogenesis and additional processes of embryonic development in mammals, and shed light on the mechanism of how they operate. Fendrr is probably only one of many lncRNAs that participate in epigenetic control of regulators for tissue- and organogenesis.


Further Information

Join For Free

Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 2,900+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 4,200+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

Epigenetic Switch for Obesity
Obesity can sometimes be shut down.
Friday, January 29, 2016
A Worm with Five Faces
Max Planck scientists discover new roundworm species on Réunion.
Monday, January 04, 2016
Proteomics Identifies DNA Repair Toolbox
Max-Planck scientists identify protein profiles of DNA repair.
Tuesday, May 05, 2015
A Gene For Brain Size - Only Found In Humans
Following the traces of evolution: Max Planck Researchers find a key to the reproduction of brain stem cells.
Tuesday, March 03, 2015
Earliest Modern Human Sequenced
Researchers discover fragments of Neandertal DNA in the genome of a 45,000-year-old modern human from Siberia.
Friday, October 24, 2014
Scientific News
Improving Regenerative Medicine
Lab-created stem cells may lack key characteristics, UCLA research finds.
Tick Genome Reveals Secrets of a Successful Bloodsucker
NIH has announced that decipher the genome of the blacklegged tick which could lead to new tick control methods.
"Dark Side" of the Transcriptome
New approach to quantifying gene "read-outs" reveals important variations in protein synthesis and has implications for understanding neurodegenerative diseases.
Individuals' Medical Histories Predicted by their Noncoding Genomes
Researchers have found that analyzing mutations in regions of the genome that control genes can predict medical conditions such as hypertension, narcolepsy and heart problems.
New Source of Mutations in Cancer
Recently, a new mutation signature found in cancer cells was suspected to have been created by a family of enzymes found in human cells called the APOBEC3 family.
Advancing Synthetic Biology
Living systems rely on a dizzying variety of chemical reactions essential to development and survival. Most of these involve a specialized class of protein molecules — the enzymes.
Biosensors on Demand
New strategy results in custom "designer proteins" for sensing a variety of molecules.
Unique Mechanism for a High-Risk Leukemia
Researchers uncovered the aberrant mechanism underlying a notoriously treatment-resistant acute lymphoblastic leukemia subtype; findings offer lessons for understanding all cancers.
Genetically Mapping the Most Lethal E.Coli Strains
New approach could lead to fewer deaths, and new treatments.
Pumpjack" Mechanism for Splitting and Copying DNA
High-resolution structural details of cells' DNA-replicating proteins offer new insight into how these molecular machines function
Skyscraper Banner

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
2,900+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
4,200+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FOR FREE!