Monday, October 02, 2006

 

RNA Interference: Nobel prize for genetic discovery goes to Mello and Fire

From BBC News (UK): Two US scientists have been awarded the Nobel Prize for medicine for their pioneering work in genetics.

The work of Dr Andrew Fire (Stanford University School of Medicine: homepage) and Dr Craig Mello (University of Massachusetts: homepage) could lead to new treatments for a range of illnesses, including viral infections and cancer.

They discovered a phenomenon called RNA interference, which regulates the expression of genes.

...The Nobel citation, issued by Sweden's Karolinska Institute, said: "This year's Nobel Laureates have discovered a fundamental mechanism for controlling the flow of genetic information."...

...Scientists have speculated that the mechanism developed hundreds of millions of years ago as a way to protect organisms against invading viruses, which sometimes create double-stranded RNA when they replicate. [Evolution, Umass, Laureate, Science]
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Featured books: "RNA Interference Technology: From Basic Science to Drug Development" by Andrew Fire et al. (Amazon UK | US)

and "Rnai: A Guide to Gene Silencing" edited by Gregory J. Hannon (Amazon UK | US)

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