Molecular biology

Regenerative proteins revealed

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    Large-scale tissue profiling in the red-spotted newt (Notophthalmus viridescens, pictured) has revealed hundreds of new proteins, some of which could contribute to the newt's regenerative ability.

    Newts can regrow severed limbs and some damaged organs, but the molecular processes driving this renewal have been hard to pin down — in part because the newt's enormous genome has not yet been sequenced.


    Thomas Braun at the Max Planck Institute for Heart and Lung Research in Bad Nauheim, Germany, and his colleagues sequenced RNA transcripts from undamaged newt tissues, as well as tissue at different stages of regeneration, and hunted down the protein counterparts using mass spectrometry. Of the around 15,000 transcripts that the authors verified as protein coding, 826 coded proteins that are specific to newts. Some of those may represent new families of proteins.

    Genome Biol. 14, R16 (2013)

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    Regenerative proteins revealed. Nature 495, 145 (2013) doi:10.1038/495145e

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