Cells use Morse code to control genes

18.01.2005

18.01.2005


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Biologists from the Universities of Liverpool and Manchester, Liverpool Children's Hospital, the pharmaceutical companies AstraZeneca and Pfizer conducted a joint study to show that the cells are in the likeness of Morse code to control genes.

The work cell, its reproduction and death accompanies the periodic switching on and off different genes.

And, as it turned out, to manage the process uses cell signaling, reminiscent of Morse code. The signals themselves — is the emergence of certain "signal" molecules in the cell nucleus or cytoplasm.

Experiments have shown that a key role is played not by the signal strength (concentration of molecules), and the dynamic pattern of change in the force — a kind of dots and dashes, spaced out over time.

Different frequency of appearance and disappearance of the same signaling molecules may encode different messages — the researchers said.

This means that the decryption code will help to create more effective medicines that can "talk" to the cells in the same language, interfering with their work.

Several successive images of the same cells (top) shows a fluorescent protein repeatedly moves outward from the core cell and vice versa.

The height of the image corresponds to a protein concentration of cells in the nucleus and demonstrates bursts "of Morse code."

14.01.2005

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