This week I read an article about the branching off of a species of mosquito in Africa into two different species. When they studied the two strains, dubbed M and S they found 400,000 points in the genome where there was a difference. This is a problem because Malaria is prevalent in Africa and one way to control the disease is to control the Mosquito population. Having a new strain means that insecticides that work on one strain might not work on the other strain, meaning that insecticides used in the wrong area on the wrong strain will be ineffective. They believe that the emergence of seperate strains is from different environmental conditions such as predators, larval conditions, weather changes and insecticides used in particular areas. The M and S strains originated from the Gambiae strain which was previously the main strain of malaria carrying mosquito.
October 2010 Archives
The article I read for this week focused on how even moderate alcohol consumption in expectant mothers can lead to Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. Considering I haven't learned much about FAS in the past it was interesting to know that the reason there is an issue is because alcohol alters the mothers thyroid levels and thus alters the thyroid levels in the fetus. The enzyme covered in this study was Dio3, which affects thyroid activity. In the studies preformed with rats it was discovered that Dio3 was the biggest enzyme altered by alcohol. This is significant beacuse now researchers can try to find ways to reverse the damage done by the altered levels of Dio3. It will be interesting to see if this research goes anywhere...since FAS does affect many people.
First of all a personal pet peeve...when websites change their format and non-tech savvy people spend over 30 minuets trying to figure out how to create a new entry. Creates a whole new level of grrrr...
Anyways back to the subject matter. After spending a few days researching bicoid I think I would be happy to focus on something else for awhile. I found an article that was pretty interesting since we have been discussing how changes during development can critically alter the maturation of an organism. While experimenting with the snails it was found that exposure to platinum during a critical period leads to the absence of an external shell. The snails were exposed to the platinum during this critical period and then the toxin is removed and they developed normally sans outer shell. It was found, however, that they did secrete a type of internal shell for protection. But looking at the photos that were in the article it seems a little odd the location of the gills without any form of protections, but perhaps I am just too accustomed to the sight of snails and slugs, but not "snugs" which these mutated creatures resemble. Article
I sort of found this relative to what the class has read in Carrolls book about the mutagens that caused cyclops deformation in the sheep. Very strange but interesting how exposure to a toxin can alter some areas of development but leave the rest of the organism seemingly unscathed!