Weekly Topic


News Release from Uppsala University on March 18, 2011.


(c) Kathleen Long


Wrinkled dog is key to new direction within inflammation research

An international research team led from Uppsala University and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard has discovered the gene underlying the characteristic wrinkled skin of the Shar-Pei dog. The same gene has been shown to be associated with a chronic fever condition that often afflicts members of the breed. The findings, which are interesting from a human health standpoint, were published today in PLoS Genetics.

Purebred dogs are bred on the basis of specific physical and behavioural characteristics. The selection process increases the likelihood that certain gene variants will be passed on, along with the risk for undesirable health issues.

The Shar-Pei’s thickened and wrinkled skin contains excess hyaluronic acid, probably due to over-activation of the HAS2 gene, one of the genes that govern production of hyaluronic acid. Members of the breed are often afflicted with a recurrent fever-like condition that bears resemblance to an auto-inflammatory fever condition in humans.

Researchers compared the breed’s genetic code with that of other breeds. They also compared the genetic code of healthy and afflicted Shar-Pei dogs. Both studies generated interesting results relating to the DNA region in which the HAS2 gene is located. In Shar-Pei dogs, multiple identical copies of a certain DNA segment were found in the proximity of this gene. No such duplications are present within other breeds.

“It was exciting to discover that the illness and the wrinkles share a genetic background,” says Mia Olsson, a doctoral student and the first author of the publication.

Wrinkled:しわのある inflammation:炎症
Uppsala:ウプサラ(スウェーデンの都市名) MIT:マサチューセッツ工科大学 gene:遺伝子 underlying:~の基礎にある Shar-Pei dog:シャーペイ犬 chronic:慢性のfever:熱 afflicts:~を苦しめる standpoint:観点 Genetics:遺伝学(PLoS Geneticsは雑誌名)
purebred:純血種の on the basis of:~に基づき behavioural:行動の likelihood:可能性 variants:変異 be passed on:遺伝する undesirable:望ましくない
thickened:厚くなった hyaluronic acid:ヒアルロン酸 due to:~により over-activation:過剰な活性化 HAS2:ヒアルロン酸合成酵素2 recurrent fever-like:回帰熱のような bears resemblance to:~と類似した auto-inflammatory:自己炎症性の
Researchers:研究者 generated:生み出した relating to:~に関して DNA region:DNA領域 multiple:複数の identical:同一の DNA segment:DNA断片 in the proximity of:~の近くに duplications:重複
wrinkles:しわ genetic:遺伝的な doctoral student:博士課程の学生 first author:筆頭著者



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