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    Home > Biochemistry News > Biotechnology News > What determines the growth rate of a child?

    What determines the growth rate of a child?

    • Last Update: 2021-11-12
    • Source: Internet
    • Author: User
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    Scientists have determined how a protein in the brain uses information about the body's energy balance to regulate the growth rate of children and the onset of puberty
    .

    The study is planned to be published in the journal Nature on November 3, and the focus of the research is on the melanocorticoid 3 receptor (MC3R), which is a member of a protein family that has long been considered It plays an important role in metabolism and energy balance
    .
     

    Physiologist Roger Cone of the University of Michigan and his colleagues discovered the MC3R gene more than 20 years ago and proved that mice lacking this protein have linearly reduced growth
    .
    Follow-up studies published by the Cone research team also showed that this receptor plays a role in regulating the interaction between reproductive and energy states, including increased food intake and weight gain during pregnancy
    .
     

    Now, an international team of scientists led by Stephen O'Rahilly of the Institute of Metabolic Sciences at the University of Cambridge has revealed for the first time how defects in MC3R are transformed into humans—the results are surprisingly similar to those found in mice
    .
     

    The O'Rahilly team reported the first person to have mutations in both copies of the MC3R gene, which made his MC3R lose its function
    .
    Such cases are extremely rare, and may occur in only one in a billion people
    .
    This individual showed almost the same phenotype or physiological characteristics as mice without MC3R
    .
     

    Using data from the British Biobank and the Longitudinal Study of Children, the team analyzed the phenotype of a mutation in a copy of the MC3R encoding gene in volunteers
    .
    Compared with people without the MC3R mutation, these people showed shorter height and less lean mass
    .
     

    "In terms of melanocorticoids, every phenotype we observed in mice was eventually found to be replicated in humans," Cone said.
    "The direct connection between animal models and humans is not always the case
    .
    But this study shows that the mouse is a nearly perfect model for studying human syndromes related to melanocortin receptors
    .

    In addition, O'Rahilly discovered a new phenotype in people with MC3R mutations: in patients lacking MC3R, there is a long delay in the onset of puberty, while in volunteers from the British Biobank, there is only one gene.
    The copy of has a mutation
    .
    Since only two copies of the MC3R gene in one patient were found to be missing, the researchers also used a mouse gene knockout model to confirm and further understand this finding
    .
     

    New data generated by Richard Simely, a collaborator of Cone Lab and Vanderbilt Medical School, published in this latest study, confirms this effect and believes that MC3R plays a role in conveying nutrient deprivation to the reproductive axis
    .
     

    When the mice fasted for 24 hours, MC3R detected insufficient energy storage in the body and relayed the information to the part of the brain responsible for regulating the reproductive cycle
    .
    In normal mice, the reproductive cycle stops until energy reserves return to normal, that is, after fasting
    .
    However, in mice without MC3R, the reproductive axis did not change after fasting, indicating that communication about energy balance has ceased
    .
     

    "These types of experiments give us important new insights into the human body's metabolism and reproductive pathways, but obviously they cannot be performed on humans," Cone said.
    "This research illustrates the key role of animal models in the scientific foundation of graduate students.
    , These basic research can be transformed into human health and disease research
    .

    Original search:

    MC3R links nutritional state to childhood growth and the timing of puberty

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