Author Archives: DWN

A genetics-led approach defines the drug target landscape of 30 immune-related traits

It is assumed that human genetics can help identify new drug targets. However, the best way to prioritize genes as therapeutic targets remains controversial. Authors [see attached article & editorial] describe a framework to prioritize potential targets by integrating genome-wide … Continue reading

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Recessive gene disruptions in autism spectrum disorder

These GEITP pages have often chatted about autism spectrum disorder (ASD) — because it represents a mysterious complex disease that is clearly multifactorial (i.e. the trait represents contribution of genes, epigenetic effects, environmental factors, and perhaps endogenous influences and the … Continue reading

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High-throughput identification of human SNPs affecting regulatory element activity

Frequently these GEITP pages have chatted about gene expression, which is constantly being altered by environmental signals; these signals stimulate a cascade of downstream reactions which of course begin by tickling the regulatory elements that control gene expression, make the … Continue reading

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Advances in epigenetics link genetics to the environment and disease (Nice Review)

Biologists have long sought to understand how a fertilized egg can form an organism composed of hundreds of specialized cell-types, each expressing a defined set of genes. Same with an acorn: how does this little nut form an oak tree, … Continue reading

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CRISPR/Cas9 Whole-Genome Screen Identifies Genes Required for AHR-Dependent Induction of Functional CYP1A

Very central to the topic of gene-environment interactions are endogenous and exogenous “signals,” recognized by the basic-helix/loop/helix (bHLH) transcription factor, aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHH) — followed by activation of numerous genetic and biochemical pathways that represent “responses” to those signals. … Continue reading

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Artificial Intelligence (AI) used to test evolution’s oldest mathematical model

I cannot claim to be an expert on artificial intelligence (AI) or machine-learning, but I would say that the essence of this approach is as follows: Many things in science (more so in biology than perhaps in chemistry, and even … Continue reading

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HGNC Summer 2019 NewsLetter and DR Nelson Blog on “Seeing Red

Pasted below is the Summer 2019 NewsLetter for the HUGO Gene Nomenclature Committee (HGNC) — which has now combined forces with the Vertebrate Gene Nomenclature Committee (VGNC). Below that is their first blog, this one by that “famous gene superfamily … Continue reading

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New alcohol-related genes suggest shared genetic mechanisms with neuropsychiatric disorders

Alcoholism is a multifactorial trait that is manifested by genes (genotype), epigenetic factors (epigenome), environmental effects (alcohol consumption, frequently accompanied by smoking), endogenous influences (e.g. eventually heart and liver disease), and probably each person’s microbiome (primarily gut flora; contribution of … Continue reading

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Gene co-expression network-based analysis of multiple brain tissues reveals novel genes and molecular pathways underlying major depressive disorder (MDD)

Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is a serious mental health disorder with a global lifetime frequency of ~12% (17% of women, 9% of men). MDD is well known to be a very complex multifactorial trait (i.e. contributions from genetics, epigenetic factors, … Continue reading

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Evidence that DNA repair genes, a family of tumor suppressor genes, are associated with evolution rate and size of genomes

Consistent with the theme of “evolution” that is often discussed in these GEITP pages, “adaptive radiation” is a well-known phenomenon in evolutionary biology — in which a taxon (a taxonomic group of any rank, such as a class, family, order, … Continue reading

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