We all know that almost all cells of our body are regularly updated. But what happens to the cells at this moment? And a process called "apoptosis" happens to them. This, in short, is a pre-programmed death. A natural process without which we could not exist. However, apoptosis is not always good. Say, after a heart attack or organ transplantation, this process begins. And it would be nice to understand how to stop him. That is exactly what the group of Australian scientists has achieved.
The results of an 11-year study are published in the journal Nature Chemical Biology, and experts from Monash University, led by Professors David Juan, Guillaume Lessen and Benjamin Kiel, are behind it. Scientists claim that the "cell death blocker" they create has tremendous potential for maintaining the viability of cells.
Never before have we seen such a promising ability to disrupt the cellular process in the early stages of apoptosis before irreversible damage occurs. An acute myocardial infarction can cause rapid cell death, resulting in the loss and weakening of tissues and muscles. Under such conditions, the ability to prevent uncontrolled cell death can improve a patient's recovery or even increase their chances of survival.
Apoptosis is controlled by the BCL-2 protein family. In addition, some of them increase cell survival while others cause cell death. While the balance of these proteins is roughly survival-oriented, the cell works. The team focused on the proteins BAK and BAX. They are activated at a critical stage of apoptosis and their appearance is a kind of "point of no return", after which the cell is condemned to death.
In laboratory models we have found that we can inhibit apoptosis and maintain cell function. We have shown that it is possible to stop the biochemical cascade that causes cell death exactly where it starts.
During experiments with cell cultures, researchers were able to "deactivate" the BAK protein with a specially selected molecule. This made it possible to inhibit apoptosis and to keep the cells alive and healthy, since the second IV characteristic is insufficient to shift the equilibrium and start the apoptosis process. Moreover, the bioorganic molecule produced does not require any special production costs and does not affect other cell systems. If you wish, you can also adjust the concentration of the substance so that it is "not enough" to affect neighboring organs and tissues. And so the new molecule can also be applied on a fairly local level. What do you think of the new technology? Write about it in our chat in telegram.
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The scientists are confident that their discovery will help develop drugs for the treatment of neurodegenerative processes associated with brain function loss (eg Parkinson's and Alzheimer's), cardiovascular diseases such as myocardial infarction and transplantation Organs to keep fit transplants for a longer time.