red blood cells

This tag is associated with 6 posts

How super is a super-enhancer?

Over the past few years, a fierce debate has raged on amongst geneticists about whether the enticingly named ‘super-enhancer’, a region of the DNA proposed to have essential functions in controlling how a cell works, actually exists. Last month, a study by a team of scientists in Doug Higgs’ lab at the WIMM finally took … Continue reading

How do you fix broken blood?

Congenital Dyserythropoietic Anaemia (CDA) is a rare disease that causes insufficient production of red blood cells. This means that the body is unable to carry enough oxygen around to its vital organs, resulting in dizziness, chest pain, tiredness and shortness of breath. In severe cases, patients are dependent on regular blood transfusions for life. In … Continue reading

What links Down Syndrome and childhood leukaemia?

In short: we don’t know – but scientists at the WIMM are hoping to find out. Just over a year ago, Professor Irene Roberts moved from the Hammersmith Hospital in London to the WIMM, where she is continuing her long-standing research into haematological disorders that affect newborn babies – particularly those with Down syndrome. In … Continue reading

Learning the FACS

Modern scientific research is being revolutionised by incredibly powerful new technologies: machines which can read your entire genetic code; microscopes which can see individual molecules inside living cells; and computers which can re-create the big bang. In this post, Lucas Greder in Marella de Bruijn’s lab describes his experiences with another such technology: fluorescence activated … Continue reading

How to make a red blood cell – and fast

Understanding how normal blood cells are made in the body can help us understand what goes wrong in blood-related diseases such as anaemia (a lack of red blood cells) and leukaemia (cancer of the blood). Guest writer Dr. Gemma Swiers describes recent research by Claus Nerlov’s group in the WIMM that has made an exciting breakthrough in understanding how the … Continue reading

Not all junk DNA is rubbish

The term ‘junk DNA’ [1] is one loved by journalists, and often loathed by scientists. When the full sequence of the human genome was published in 2004 [2], it was found that in actual fact less than 2% of your DNA actually contains instructions to make proteins (the physical building blocks of the human body). … Continue reading

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