Scientists discover a protein that keeps cellular nuclei from shriveling, a hallmark of old age and the premature-aging disease progeria
March 5, 2015
| By Rachel Tompa / Fred Hutch News Service
Scientists at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center have found a protein that helps shape the nucleus, a special compartment within cells that houses and controls genetic information. When cells are missing that protein, known as Wash, nuclei lose their classic plump shape and become wrinkled and puckered. Nuclei pucker in the natural aging process and in certain diseases including progeria, a rare and fatal genetic disorder that dramatically speeds up aging. Whether Wash plays a role in progeria or aging is still unclear, but these findings are an intriguing hint that it might, said Dr. Susan Parkhurst, a biologist at Fred Hutch.
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