Genetic tug of war in the brain influences behavior

first_imgEmail Share on Facebook Not every mom and dad agree on how their offspring should behave. But in genetics as in life, parenting is about knowing when your voice needs to be heard, and the best ways of doing so. Typically, compromise reigns, and one copy of each gene is inherited from each parent so that the two contribute equally to the traits who make us who we are. Occasionally, a mechanism called genomic imprinting, first described 30 years ago, allows just one parent to be heard by completely silencing the other.Now, researchers at the University of Utah School of Medicine report on a version of genetic parental control in mice that is more targeted, and subtle. Published in Cell Reports, so-called noncanonical imprinting is particularly prevalent in the brain, and skews the genetic message in subpopulations of cells so that mom, or dad, has a stronger say. The mechanism can influence offspring behavior, and because it is observed more frequently than classic imprinting, appears to be preferred.“The field has traditionally thought of genetics at the level of the whole animal, and sometimes the tissue. We’re documenting it at the cellular level,” says senior author Christopher Gregg, Ph.D., assistant professor of neurobiology and anatomy. “Genetics is much more complicated than we thought.” A case in point is the impact of noncanonical signaling on motivated behaviors that prompt a timid mouse to leave its protective shelter when it needs to search for food. Five genes preferably controlled by mom, or dad, cluster within a biochemical pathway that creates serotonin and dopamine, neurochemicals that affect mood and behavior. The imprinting is further customized by being enriched in subregions of the brain known to control behavior (arcuate nucleus, and dorsal raphe nucleus). When the scientists remove the active, maternal copy of one of the genes, tyrosine hydroxylase (Th), they see a modest but consistent increase in the amount of time the mice spend out in the open, showing it controls the behavior. By contrast, mice with their silenced, paternal copy removed show no behavioral changes.“We speculate that a better strategy for imprinting is to do it in the cells that are needed to achieve the desired effect, rather than to do it in every tissue,” says Gregg.In total, 80 percent of 210 imprinted genes analyzed – the vast majority – were subject to noncanonical imprinting. 64 percent of those genes showed parental bias exclusively in the brain or subregions of the brain, and not in non-neural tissues, liver or muscle.A novel method that visualizes active copies of genes shows that the bias stems from differences within populations of cells. While canonically imprinted genes have just one active copy in nearly every cell examined, noncanonically imprinted genes have one active copy in subsets of cells, and two active copies in others.The results expand on previous work by another group who found a gene that imprints in specific neurons, and is reported to be associated with autism when mutated. This and the current study’s behavior experiments highlight that in addition to fine-tuning parental control, noncanonical imprinting may have a downside.Gregg speculates that the targeted form of imprinting gives rise to “high-risk” neurons that are especially vulnerable to mutations inherited from one parent because they don’t express a second, healthy back-up copy to compensate for the mistake. “We think that subpopulations of cells that preferentially express mutated genes could disproportionately contribute to brain disorders such as autism,” he says. Future research will test the hypothesis and novel therapies to overcome the deficits. Pinterestcenter_img LinkedIn Share on Twitter Sharelast_img read more

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Stepping Up To The Plate

first_imgLife was cut short at only 47 years old for Walter Plate, an American abstract painter who emerged after World War II. Plate served in the marines before settling in Woodstock, NY, where he’d have his studio and achieve fame in the 1950s and ’60s. His solo exhibits included the Stable Gallery, five Whitney Annuals, and group shows at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Art Institute of Chicago, Corcoran Gallery in Washington D.C., and more.Plate (1925-1972) and his family would visit his brother, William, in East Hampton annually. These visits contributed to his artistic style. The Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center in Springs will show a selection of 11 paintings on paper by Walter Plate (1925-1972) from August 1 through October 31. The exhibit’s fully illustrated catalog will feature an essay by Plate’s son, Marc, as he offers insight to his father’s background. Indy recently caught up with Marc for an interview.What was the dynamic like at home?I saw how hard he worked. It was interesting because my mother was an art teacher in the elementary school system, so she supported his work and the family in the ’50s and ’60s. As an artist, particularly in those times, there was a lot of isolation. He secluded himself in the studio, like many of his artist friends, all day, most of the night, working on whatever. He told me: never be an artist or get married. I took his advice for a long time. And then I ended up doing art in New York for 18 years and got married at 34, had a family.What do you remember about your childhood visits to East Hampton?I remember going out there with my brother, father, and my mother to my Uncle Bill’s place. He had a house a block away from the ocean. He and Herman Cherry introduced my father to a lot of the artists in the area. Every summer we would go, there’d be a lot of socializing at night. From mine and my brother’s point of view, it was all just emotion oriented. All we did was just play by the shore and do a lot of events there with other kids.What do you think influenced your father’s paintings?When he was in Woodstock, in the ’50s, he was immersed in the mountains and the greenery for most of the year. And that was what was distilled in his paintings. His studio was right there, with a beautiful, panoramic view of the mountains. His paintings were very rich greens, oranges, and red tints. They were easily recognized. Then in the late ’50s and ’60s, he went back to the water more.My father grew up with water. It’s represented so clearly in his abstraction. It’s probably the most realistic part, the backdrop of the ocean. Virtually every painting is a blue, horizontal body. The greens and oranges segue into each other that became more defined blues, reds, beachy with a very different light. He was definitely very influenced by his natural environment.Do you have a distinct memory of him you could share?He taught at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute three, four days a week, so we would have models come to the studio. And my brother and I would wonder what he does with these women that come into the studio for hours at a time. One day, I went into the studio to see what he was doing after one of them left. On the easel was a big piece of paper with all of these abstract lines that didn’t make any sense. Totally abstract. I thought it was going to be a realistic picture of a reclining woman, but it was just these majestic lines.How would you describe his style?He kept with abstract, quasi-abstract impressionism. Seeing these paintings come in and out of the house and the studio, I had no idea what they were. For years, even after I was told there were clues in those paintings, I would try to figure it out. Finally, at a certain belated age, I would see them. Some a little more obvious than others, such as one on Georgica Beach.Which is your favorite painting?There’s a picture of my father holding me in front of a painting back in 1955. It was called “Spring.” It was very reminiscent of the Catskill Mountains in the spring, all those colors. Perfectly done, very abstracted. There’s a color reproduction in the catalog. That’s my favorite painting. It’s bright, colorful, optimistic. Having taken his first son to a big show, two years running in a stable gallery, he felt good, and it comes through in that painting.The Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center is located at 830 Springs-Fireplace Road in East Hampton. Learn more at [email protected] Sharelast_img read more

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Beda frustrates La Salle, takes Fil-Oil caging title

first_img[av_textblock size=” font_color=” color=”] MANILA – Robert Bolick drained a go-ahead triple as San Beda Red Lions claimed the 2017 Fil-Oil Flying V Premier Cup championship with a 75-72 win over De La Salle University Green Archers.The reigning NCAA men’s basketball titlist won the finals Sunday night at the San Juan Arena in style — they finished the tournament with an unblemished 11-0 win-loss record, duplicating the feat of the dethroned Green Archers.At 72-all following a game-tying triple by teammate Amiel Soberano, Bolick pushed his team forward with a 3-pointer over the defense of Santi Santillan with 8.5 seconds remaining.Bolick — a former Green Archer — finished with 24 points, eight rebounds and six assists.Ilonggo Clint Doliguez also made a showing for Red Lions by converting crucial baskets in the final quarter that erased Green Archers’ 7-point lead.“I loved the way they played today. We were up, we were down. But everybody stepped up. It’s really the trust and confidence in our system,” said Red Lions head coach Teodorico Fernandez III.It was a see-saw battle from the start until La Salle pulled a 49-42 lead in the third frame. But San Beda went on a run behind Doliguez and Kemark Carino to snatch the lead 62-59 early in the final frame.San Beda were still ahead 69-65 when La Salle went on a 7-0 rally behind Santillan and Aljun Melecio to take the lead 72-69. Back-to-back triples by Soberano and Bolick swung the lead to Red Lions for good.Tournament MVP Benoit Mbala finished with 25 points, 14 rebounds, and four blocks, while Melecio added 14 markers for La Salle./PN[/av_textblock][/av_one_full] [av_one_full first min_height=” vertical_alignment=” space=” custom_margin=” margin=’0px’ padding=’0px’ border=” border_color=” radius=’0px’ background_color=” src=” background_position=’top left’ background_repeat=’no-repeat’ animation=”][av_heading heading=’Beda frustrates La Salle, takes Fil-Oil caging title ‘ tag=’h3′ style=’blockquote modern-quote’ size=” subheading_active=’subheading_below’ subheading_size=’15’ padding=’10’ color=” custom_font=”]BY ADRIAN STEWART CO[/av_heading][av_textblock size=” font_color=” color=”]Tuesday, June 27, 2017[/av_textblock][av_image src=’http://www.panaynews.net/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/sports-beda-fil-oil.jpg’ attachment=’109960′ attachment_size=’full’ align=’center’ styling=” hover=” link=” target=” caption=’yes’ font_size=” appearance=’on-hover’ overlay_opacity=’0.4′ overlay_color=’#000000′ overlay_text_color=’#ffffff’ animation=’no-animation’]Robert Bolick gets cheered on by teammates and fans during the 2017 Fil-Oil Flying V Premier Cup finals on Sunday night, June 25 when he scored 3 in the dying seconds to help San Beda Red Lions defeat De La Salle University Green Archers. JOSH ALBELDA FOR ABS-CBN SPORTS[/av_image]last_img read more

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