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|SAN FRANCISCO Alvaro Odriozola España Camiseta , Sept. 18 (Xinhua) -- By developing a way to better study a large protein essential for hearing and finding a truncated version of it, researchers at Oregon State University (OSU) have taken a step toward gene therapy for deaf patients.
While mutations in the protein, known as otoferlin, are linked to severe congenital hearing loss David de Gea España Camiseta , a common type of deafness in which patients can hear almost nothing, the research suggests that otoferlin, which is in the cochlea of the inner ear, acts as a calcium-sensitive linker protein.
Published recently in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Española Copa Mundial Camiseta , or PNAS, the study also shows that a mutation in otoferlin weakens the binding between the protein and a calcium synapse in the ear, and deficiencies in that interaction might be at the root of hearing loss related to otoferlin, which is difficult to study due to the size of its molecule.
As they try to explore how otoferlin works differently than another neuronal calcium sensor in the brain Española Futbol Camiseta , synaptotagmin, the researchers in OSU's College of Science developed a single-molecule colocalization binding titration assay for quantitatively probing otoferlin.
"Otoferlin seems only to have one purpose and that is to encode sound in the sensory hair cells in the inner ear," corresponding author Colin Johnson, associate professor of biochemistry and biophysics Asier Illarramendi Copa Mundial Camiseta , explained in a news release from OSU Monday. "And small mutations in otoferlin render people profoundly deaf."
The work by Johnson and his collaborators provides a molecular-level explanation for the observation that otoferlin and synaptotagmin don't have the same functional role. Performed using recombinant protein from cell lysate isolated in vitro, it also validates a methodology for characterizing large, multivalent membrane proteins in general.
"The otoferlin gene is really big, and it makes a huge protein Suso Copa Mundial Camiseta ," Johnson said. "The traditional method for making a recombinant protein is using E. coli, but they loathe big proteins." While there is a size limit in terms of what can be packaged into the gene delivery vehicle, the researchers tried to shorten the gene, to find a truncated form that can be used for gene therapy.
"That's the holy grail Pepe Reina Copa Mundial Camiseta , trying to find a miniature version of otoferlin that can be packaged into the delivery vehicle and then hopefully the patient can start hearing," he noted. As a result, the team identified a truncated form of otoferlin that can function in the encoding of sound.
MANILA， July 28 (Xinhua) -- Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday threatened to withdraw the unilateral ceasefire that he declared with the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) after the rebel group launched ambush that resulted in the death of a government militiamen in the Davao del Sur the other day.
Duterte， during his visit to a military camp in Lucena City in Quezon， said he demanded an immediate explanation from the CPP in connection with the incident in which one was killed and another three were injured.
Duterte said he relayed his message to the NDF that he wants the CPP to make it clear if they are serious about the peace negotiations and if they have control over their armed men on the ground.
The president said the members of the Citizen Armed Force Geographical Unit (CAFGU) are part of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
Duterte also said that he expects disciplinary actions to be taken against the members of the NPA that were involved in the attack saying that under the government those who violate the law， including members of the police and military， will be penalized when they break the law.
""I demand an answer as to who broke the law， they must be put under disciplinary actions otherwise we don't have a deal. That is my deal，"" he added.
The president declared a unilateral ceasefire during his state of the nation address on Monday as a sign of goodwill and provide a conducive atmosphere to the peace negotiations with the CPP-NPA-NDF that would resume on August 20 to 27 in Norway.
He said apart from the ceasefire the government has already started the process of issuing a safe conduct pass for members of the communist rebels that would participate in the peace talks.
Duterte had urged the military for understanding as he explained anew why he had to declare a ceasefire with the communist group.
He reiterated that apart from his desire for peace， as commander in chief and president of the country he had to think of the welfare of the general public and what is good for everyone.
Duterte said he knows that a lot of the military men and even policemen are resistant to the truce especially after many of their colleagues had died during operations， but there had already been a lot of deaths and the war had already gone too long.
The communist rebellion has killed 30，000 people since 1960s， and the NPA is believed to have fewer than 4，000 men today， down from a peak of 26，000 in the 1980s， according to the military.
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