Brain Cells Have Preference For One Set Of Parent’s Genes

For a long time, scientists have thought that genes coming from parents are shared equally. Now a new research shows a different take on this. Brain cells are shown to have preference for one set of parent's genes.

The body might acquire traits from parents' genes, but it will only prefer to follow one set of DNA instructions. The brain would activate one set of genes over another. This has been found out by researchers from the University of Utah School of Medicine.

With the new findings, long held tenets about genetics might soon be changed. The study has looked into how this happens in the brain of a newborn mouse as its test subject. The study has found that at first, 85 percent of the genes from mother and father were being activated. Ten days later, that situation has been reversed. Both copies were being activated equally.

The situation does not only happen in the brain, but other parts of the bodies can have the same occurrence. Muscle and liver might find the same situation. The study also has shown that it can happen even in people as well.

The study has shown that genetics can be complicated even in the cellular level. This has been observed by Christopher Gregg, Ph.D. He is the senior author of the study and an assistant professor of Neurobiology and Anatomy. The study could also lead to treatment in brain disorders.

Genes that are affected by it include those that carry risk factors in mental illness, according to University of Utah Health Care's site. This has been seen in a gene called DEAF1, a gene which has been connected to autism and intellectual disability. The gene has been found to prefer one set of gene instructions over another.

This preferential activation has been shown in lab tests, when mice brain cells would choose mutated genes over healthy ones, as Science Daily reports. The test results that came out validated this, and were not the result of either technical issues or genetic noise. The results from the study also build on the results from earlier studies.

With the findings, researchers have seen that brain cells have preference for one set of parent's genes. This could help in finding new treatment for many mental disorders. A study finds that a general cancer vaccine is not yet likely.

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