Skip to comments.Remote-controlled genes trigger insulin production
Posted on 05/06/2012 1:56:24 PM PDT by neverdem
Nanoparticles heated by radio waves switch on genes in mice
Researchers have remotely activated genes inside living animals, a proof of concept that could one day lead to medical procedures in which patients genes are triggered on demand.
The work, in which a team used radio waves to switch on engineered insulin-producing genes in mice, is published today in Science1.
Jeffrey Friedman, a molecular geneticist at the Rockefeller University in New York and lead author of the study, says that in the short term, the results will lead to better tools to allow scientists to manipulate cells non-invasively. But with refinement, he thinks, clinical applications could also be possible.
Friedman and his colleagues coated iron oxide nanoparticles with antibodies that bind to a modified version of the temperature-sensitive ion channel TRPV1, which sits on the surface of cells. They injected these particles into tumours grown under the skins of mice, then used the magnetic field generated by a device similar to a miniature magnetic-resonance-imaging machine to heat the nanoparticles with low-frequency radio waves. In turn, the nanoparticles heated the ion channel to its activation temperature of 42 °C. Opening the channel allowed calcium to flow into cells, triggering secondary signals that switched on an engineered calcium-sensitive gene that produces insulin.
After 30 minutes of radio-wave exposure, the mice's insulin levels had increased and their blood sugar levels had dropped.
The great thing about this system is that radio-wave heating can penetrate deep tissue, and TRPV1 can focus that stimulus very locally to just where you have the nanoparticles, says David Julius, a physiologist who studies TRPV1 at the University of California, San Francisco.
Friedman says that his team did not develop the method as a way of managing diabetes; insulin and blood sugar levels simply provide convenient physiological...
(Excerpt) Read more at nature.com ...
Will iron oxide, aka rust, coated with antibodies obviate the need for the usual functional islets of Langerhans making insulin?
Can you even dye my eyes to match my gown?
Re: “Radio waves switch on genes”
I knew it.
Rush Limbaugh is good for my health!
I can understand how organs could be regrown to replace damaged ones, but eventually the brain will fail so how do you replace that? Nancys was born failed so she don't matter, but besides that, I can't see how the brain could be replaced. Even if you could grow an exact duplicate and completely replicate every last neuron, you would still die because it would not be you. Or would it?
Roger, is that you?
One hundred years too late.
This is just a proof of principle that you can make insulin without the usual islets of Langerhans in the pancreas doing it, IMHO. For diabetes, it's not yet ready for prime time. Insulin is a good thing, but too much can be fatal.
Man was created immortal, and will one day, I think very soon, have that opportunity again.