A study from the University of Bonn found a gene, "SHROOM4", has an important role in embryonic development. The study found a total of 6 individuals who had alterations to the SHROOM4 gene. All of the individuals had embryonic malformities, including malformities in the kidneys, heart, and esophagus. A study was then performed on zebrafish. Zebrafish also have been found to have the same gene. When the gene was turned off in zebrafish embryos, the fish would develop malformities similar to the ones in humans. If the human form of the gene were to be inserted into the embryos, they would develop as usual, almost free of malformities.
This article was an interesting read. There is still a lot that is unknown about embryonic development. Though the study did not determine what exactly SHROOM4 does for embryonic development, this finding is still important for discovering more about embryonic development. This finding is one part of a huge picture. It will be interesting to see what studies build off of this one to work out more of the picture.
I think this gene provides the code for proteins that impact development. Proteins make up the tissues found in our bodies so if this gene codes for structural proteins, this would be the reason why the people with abnormal SHROOM4 genes are born with deformities.ReplyDelete