Tag: Evolution + Development

Studies Examine Development in Drosophila

February 11, 2004

Two studies by scientists in the lab of Whitehead Member Terry Orr-Weaver that shed light on developmental strategies of Drosophila were published in recent issues of the journals Developmental Cell and Current Biology.

Study Identifies Protein Complex Critical in Rapid Embryogenesis

December 11, 2003

For scientists who study embryonic development, insects, amphibians and marine invertebrates provide a unique window on the early stages of an embryo’s life. These organisms differ from higher life forms by having a simpler system for cell division, but it’s a system on fast forward: The embryos receive a maternal care package that permits their DNA replication and chromosome segregation to go into overdrive.

MicroRNAs Play a Role in Blood Formation, Study Finds

December 4, 2003

Scientists have been fascinated by miRNAs ever since the abundance of these tiny RNAs was discovered in 2001. Rather than code for proteins, miRNAs serve as regulators that turn protein-coding genes off. Now, new studies by scientists at Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research are offering insight into the role miRNAs play in mammalian development.

Scientists Identify Dual Function for “Eyes absent”

November 19, 2003

Scientists know that proteins called transcription factors that regulate gene expression play a key role in cellular function. But what if that’s only part of the story? What if these regulators lead a double life no one knew before?

Laboratory “Theme Park” Re-creates RNA World for Study

August 26, 2003

Rarely, if ever, are theme parks built around a biological theme – and never do such parks fit inside a test tube. Almost never. Scientist David Bartel is hard at work on what might seem an impossibility – a microscopic theme park whose motif, the origins of life, is of equal interest to both scientists and philosophers.

Illustration of chromosome

Rumors of Male Chromosome's Demise Greatly Exaggerated, Study Finds

June 18, 2003

In the biological battle between the sexes, the Y chromosome has suffered defeat after defeat. The male-determining chromosome has seen its gene supply shrink from more than 1,000 genes when sex chromosomes first evolved, to what scientists once thought was only a handful of genes, a downward trend predicted to continue until the Y disappeared altogether.

Scientists Sequence Male Infertility Region on Y Chromosome

November 16, 2001

In a tour de force in genomics, researchers led by the Whitehead Institute and the Washington University School of Medicine in St.Louis, Missouri, have sequenced and analyzed one of the most complicated terrains of the human genome. This region on the male sex (Y) chromosome, called AZFc, is important for sperm production and, when lost, causes male infertility.

Genoscope and Whitehead Announce the Draft Sequence of the Tetraodon Puffer Fish Genome

October 26, 2001

Chalking up another victory for comparative genomics, researchers from Genoscope (The French National Sequencing Center) in Paris, France, and the Whitehead Institute Center for Genome Research today announced that they have produced a six-fold sequence coverage of Tetraodon nigroviridis, a type of puffer fish whose genome is estimated to be 380 million DNA letters long.

New Finding Accelerates Discovery of Disease Genes and Human Population History

May 9, 2001

In an exciting new development, scientists at the Whitehead Institute Center for Genome Research have found that single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in northern Europeans—the single letter DNA differences that underlie disease susceptibility and individual variation—travel together in blocks that are much larger than previously thought. The finding has major implications for mapping disease genes and dissecting human population history.

The Masculinization of the X Chromosome: Many Genes for Early Male Sperm Production Reside on the X Chromosome

March 29, 2001

In an entirely counterintuitive result, scientists have found that nearly half of all genes related to the earliest stages of sperm production reside not on the male sex (Y) chromosome as expected, but on the X chromosome, a chromosome universally thought of as the female sex chromosome.

Scientists Create First Animal Model of Rett Syndrome

March 2, 2001

Researchers from the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research have created the long-awaited animal model for Rett syndrome, one of the most common causes of mental retardation in females with an incidence of 1 in 10,000–15,000. The transgenic mouse model sheds much-needed light on the underlying mechanism of the disease and suggests a new reason for hope in the research toward therapies.

Scientists Show Cloning Can Turn Back Developmental Clock and Faithfully Reproduce X-Inactivation

November 23, 2000

Settling a hotly debated issue in the field of cloning, a team of researchers from the Whitehead Institute and the University of Hawaii has shown that the egg can reset the developmental clock of a female adult cell, first reversing and then faithfully reproducing an early genetic event called X-inactivation. X-inactivation is a process by which one of two X chromosomes in female embryos is randomly silenced during development.

Pages

© Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research              455 Main Street          Cambridge, MA 02142