Folding art in the nucleus

Structural variants can influence the folding of DNA in the nucleus and thus lead to a misregulation of genes. Now, scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics (MPIMG) in Berlin together with physicists of the University of Naples, Italy, have developed methods to predict, whether and how such structural variants might alter the three-dimensional folding of the chromosomes. With these methods, the researchers want to predict if specific mutations influence gene regulation and can cause diseases. Their long-term goal is to better understand the so far puzzling causes of congenital malformations in order to improve the diagnosis of these rare diseases. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)