Scientists at the Waksman Institute of Microbiology at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, have zeroed in on genes which are essential for fertilization . The proteins encoded by these genes are similar to low density lipoprotein (LDL) receptors, known from cholesterol and fat metabolism but never before specifically implicated in fertilization.
A team led by Andrew Singson, an assistant professor and Pavan Kadandale, a graduate student in the Singson lab has taken a new and productive approach in the quest for finding the answer to the problem of infertility and researchers found that in the absence of these two genes,named egg-1 and egg-2, the vital process of fertilization came to a halt.
“What we learn in studying fertilization is not only important for this event, but also for the functioning of other cells in our bodies and for understanding many of those processes,” Singson said.
Fertilization can be a paradigm for gaining insight into how cells interact over the life and development of multicellular organisms because it is one of the most basic of cell-cell interactions.
The underlying cell biology is going to be universal with applications even in infectious diseases, such as AIDS, where the virus passes its genetic material to the cells it infects just as fertilization transmits sperm DNA to the egg, Singson explained.
“If you get infertility, then you know that the molecule is required for fertility, and this is our ‘smoking gun.’ Basically, we are asking the animal to tell us what it requires for its fertility, and then we try to understand how it works on a molecular level,” Singson said.
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Sub-editorFertility :: Scientists discover fertility genes
by Sub-editor ( Author at Spirit India )
Posted on January 1st, 2006 at 11:22 am.
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