An important discovery in telomere biology has been made by a team of Australian scientists, with implications for conditions ranging from cancer to ageing and heart disease. Telomeres are DNA segments at the ends of every human chromosome. As we age, telomere length naturally decreases. Over the course of a lifetime, telomere shortening instructs ageing… Read more

The mechanism by which satellite DNA, considered to be junk DNA, plays a crucial role in holding the genome together, has been determined by researchers at University of Michigan. Their findings indicate that this genetic “junk” performs the vital function of ensuring that chromosomes bundle correctly inside the cell’s nucleus, which is necessary for cell… Read more

Metastasis, the migration of cancer cells from a primary tumor to form distant tumors in the body, can be triggered by a chronic leakage of DNA within tumor cells, finds a study led by Weill Cornell Medicine and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center researchers. The authors traced the complex chain of events that results from… Read more

The three-dimensional structure of a complex that is essential for the correct sorting of chromosomes into eggs and sperm during reproductive cell division or meiosis has been solved by researchers at the Stowers Institute for Medical Research. When this structure, called the synaptonemal complex, doesn’t assemble properly in the cell, it can lead to chromosomal… Read more

Unstable chromosomes within lung tumors increases the risk of cancer returning after surgery, scientists have found. They also used this new knowledge to detect relapse long before standard testing. The findings come from a clinical trial named TRAcking Non-small Cell Lung Cancer Evolution Through Therapy (TRACERx), the first study to look at the evolution of… Read more