Fixing Wrinkly Cells Via a Virus

June 14, 2018  Source: Biotecnika 195


DNA plays a major role in the proper functioning of our cells. But as the body ages, the nuclear membrane becomes irregular and wrinkly. Genes inside the membrane get switched off, which leads to improper functioning.


Irina Bochkis, a team member of a research project at the University Of Virginia School Of Medicine said, “We have the same DNA in every single cell, but each cell is different; So how does that work? Well, actually, certain genes need to be on in the liver and they have to be turned off in the brain, for example, and vice versa. If they’re not turned off appropriately, then you have problems.”


For instance, the liver becomes accumulated with fat as we age due to wrinkly nuclear membranes. The nuclear membranes become wrinkled due to the absence of a particular membrane protein called lamin. This condition leads to high risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and death. If lamin becomes well structured, the scientists believe that they could cure the issue wrinkling.


Irina Bochkis said, “When your nuclear membrane is no longer functioning properly, it can release the DNA that’s supposed to be turned off. So then your little liver cell becomes a little fat cell.”


The scientists believe that wrinkling issue will be cured with the help of beneficial viruses. Regarding this effect, Bochkis said, “You’re going to have normal cells – normal, healthy cells – and they will appropriately express the genes that should be expressed and … you’re going to eradicate the stuff that shouldn’t be there; Every time I give this talk to colleagues, they say, ‘Well, do you think this is a universal mechanism?’” she said. “In my opinion, I think it is.”

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