Tiny 'garbage collectors' help control brain development

February 19, 2014 by Bill Hathaway
Tiny ‘garbage collectors’ help control brain development

(Medical Xpress)—Millions of tiny nanovesicles—once thought to be merely molecular garbage collectors—are actually stuffed with information crucial to brain development, Yale researchers report.

Researchers in the lab of Angelique Bordey, professor of neurosurgery and of physiology, studied exosome nanovesicles found in the of the developing brains of , stained pink in the accompanying photo. Until the last few years, scientists had believed that the primary job of these nanovesicles was to sweep up byproducts of cellular activity.

However, the researchers discovered these nanovesicles contained hundreds of proteins and bits of small RNAs that regulate a key molecular pathway controlling the density of neurons in developing brain. Bordey said it may be possible one day to analyze the contents of these nanovesicles to diagnose neurological conditions such as autism before birth.

To learn more, read the study published online Feb. 18 in the journal PLOS ONE.

Explore further: Nature's own nanoparticles harnessed to target disease

Related Stories

Nature's own nanoparticles harnessed to target disease

July 10, 2013

Using a novel form of immune-genetic therapy, researchers from Yale School of Medicine and the Jagiellonian University College of Medicine in Poland have successfully inhibited a strong immune allergic inflammatory response ...

Possible safe and novel painkillers from tarantula venom

February 14, 2014

(Medical Xpress)—Screening more than 100 spider toxins, Yale researchers identified a protein from the venom of the Peruvian green velvet tarantula that blunts activity in pain-transmitting neurons. The findings, reported ...

Recommended for you

New theory explains how beta waves arise in the brain

July 25, 2016

Beta rhythms, or waves of brain activity with an approximately 20 Hz frequency, accompany vital fundamental behaviors such as attention, sensation and motion and are associated with some disorders such as Parkinson's disease. ...

Visual pigment rhodopsin forms two-molecule complexes in vivo

July 25, 2016

The study of rhodopsin—the molecule that allows the eye to detect dim light—has a long and well-recognized history of more than 100 years. Nevertheless, there is still controversy about the structure in which the molecule ...

Scientists show how memories are linked in the brain

July 22, 2016

Some memories just seem to go together. Think about an important experience in your life. You may also closely remember another experience that happened around that time too, like exchanging vows at your wedding, and then ...

Novel compounds arrested epilepsy development in mice

July 22, 2016

A team led by Nicolas Bazan, MD, PhD, Boyd Professor and Director of LSU Health New Orleans' Neuroscience Center of Excellence, has developed neuroprotective compounds that may prevent the development of epilepsy. The findings ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

JVK
not rated yet Feb 20, 2014
Journal Article excerpt:

"We found that the most highly enriched human microRNAs were also present in rats..."

Does this suggest that Nei's concept of 'constraint-breaking mutation can be used to compare the claim: "We all are mutants" --Discover Magazine March 2014 (p. 32) -- to the claim that we are all mutant rats, since it is obvious that evolutionarily conserved molecules are involved?

http://discoverma...volution

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.