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  • A receiver for development … among others

    images84The gene hedgehog (hh) was initially identified as a key gene in embryonic development of the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster. While Drosophila has only one hedgehog gene, vertebrates have three peers. These proteins are secreted extracellular ligands by a group of cells during organ formation in the embryo. In the adult hedgehog maintains and regulates stem cells in many tissues, being instrumental in regenerative processes. There is also a close relation between HH signaling pathway and the development of tumors, genetic alterations observed that stimulate the growth of tumor cells in the digestive tract, lung and prostate .


    And Molecular Genetic studies of this approach has shown its relationship with cholesterol and lipids. Thus, both Drosophila and vertebrates, the active molecule is modified by HH cholesterol, varying the diffusion of HH activity through epithelial tissue and their signaling. In addition, the operation of the route depends on intracellular sterol content, so the appearance of the same type of malformations during pregnancy, in patients deficient in the signaling pathway of HH and in patients with defects in cholesterol synthesis could be caused by the lack of signs of HH.


    This study demonstrates that in Drosophila, hedgehog is transported through the epithelial cells of a lipoprotein in the same way that lipids and cholesterol are transported through the bloodstream. And as expected, the receiver of the road, patched, acts as a receptor of low density lipoproteins (LDLR) and its ability to modulate lipid homeostasis. With these results we get energy metabolism correlate with embryonic development and carcinogenesis, a potential new therapeutic target for the treatment of various cancers.

    Published on December 4, 2012 · Filed under: Uncategorized; Tagged as: , ,
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