It’s commonly discussed how each of our genomes contains a story documenting the migration by our ancient ancestors. This is most certainly true in that it is apparent we all originated from Africa and migrated to other continents from there. A study published today in Investigative Genetics proposes that some of the genetic diversity we commonly assume to be ancient may in fact be due to recent demographic events within the last 2000 years.
This study analyzed single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 999 individuals at 54 sites across the Netherlands. The authors studied this population in the expectation that the ancient genetic signatures from Paleolithic and Neolithic times, such as the Southeast to Northwest cline observed across Europe, …
BioMed Central will be hosting this inaugural conference in association with its journal Epigenetics & Chromatin at Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA, on the 11-13 March 2013.
The conference will have a strong focus on how epigenetic components come together to regulate cellular processes. “Epigenetics research is progressing from a listing of component parts to a fuller understanding of dynamic processes,” states Steven Henikoff (Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center), conference organizer and co-Editor-in-Chief of Epigenetics & Chromatin. Henikoff continues that “Many disease states are increasingly recognized as having both a genetic and an epigenetic basis, and chromatin regulators are often found to be cancer driver genes,”. This conference will highlight how the discovery of these epigenetic changes …
Predicting externally visible characteristics of the deceased using just genetic information is an extremely difficult task, and one that has only become possible in recent years. New investigative technologies and techniques that improve the accuracy and efficiency of identifying phenotypes from DNA samples are likely to have a huge impact on the fields of forensics and archaeology.
New research published in Investigative Genetics by Jolanta Draus-Barini et al. reports a novel technique to predict hair and eye colour from just skeletal remains. The technology involved, the HIrisPlex system, has previously been demonstrated to do this using DNA samples from live individuals. Using information from these previous studies the study authors characterised 24 polymorphisms that they could identify from …
At an exciting time when scientists and the public are foreseeing the clinical application of inducing pluripotent stem cells from mature somatic cells, John Gurdon and his lab group have published important findings in Epigenetics & Chromatin on the process behind nuclear programming. John Gurdon was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine earlier this month for his discovery that the specialization of cells is reversible, contrary to previous belief that mature cells cannot be reprogrammed.
Currently little is known about the mechanism of nuclear reprogramming. The authors of this paper analyzed the incorporation of the histone variant H3.3 in transcriptional reprogramming following transplantation of a mature nucleus into Xenopus (frog) unfertilized eggs. In previous work, histone variants …
Investigative Genetics is inviting submissions for a new article series on ‘DNA Fingerprinting’. Professor Sir Alec Jeffreys, who is due to retire this year, will be acting as an Advisory Editor for the collection in recognition of his groundbreaking work in this field.
This special collection of articles is open for the submission of research articles on all aspects of DNA fingerprinting in its widest sense and across disciplines. In addition, a series of commissioned reviews on the past, present and future of DNA fingerprinting in areas such as forensics, zoology, botany, microbiology, anthropology and medicine will feature as part of the collection.
Investigative Genetics is a peer-reviewed, open access, online journal, which publishes articles on the development and …
Little is known about the pathogenesis of the secondary form of Raynaud’s disease, vibration-induced white finger disease (VWF), a painful condition affecting the blood vessels and nerves after prolonged use of vibrating machinery. A new study in Clinical Epigenetics by Susanne Voelter-Mahlknecht et al. reports that the Sirt1A2191G single nucleotide polymorphism is a diagnostic marker for VWF.
Sirtuin 1 is a class III histone deacetylase that has been described to regulate the endothelium-dependent vasodilation by targeting eNOS, an intracellular nitric oxide synthase that lines the inside of blood vessels. eNOS regulates the contraction of smooth muscle in vessel walls, which consequently reduces blood flow.
Four genetic polymorphisms (out of 113 that were tested) within the Sirt1 gene were found to …