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IMAGE: Preoperative and postoperative brain MRI (left panel), tumor H&E (right upper panel) and GFAP immunohistochemical (right lower panel) staining images from a patient with ganglioglioma (GG231) carrying the BRAFV600E mutation…. view more 

Credit: KAIST

Pediatric brain tumors are characterized by frequent complications due to intractable epilepsy compared to adult brain tumors. However, the genetic cause of refractory epilepsy in pediatric brain tumors has not been elucidated yet, and it is difficult to treat patients because the tumors do not respond to existing antiepileptic drugs and debilitate children’s development.

A Korean research team led by Professor Jeong Ho Lee of the Graduate School of Medical Science and Engineering at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) has recently identified a neuronal BRAF somatic mutation that causes intrinsic epileptogenicity in pediatric brain tumors. Their research results were published online in Nature Medicine on September 17.

The research team studied patients’ tissue diagnosed with ganglioglioma (GG), one of the main causes of tumor-associated intractable epilepsy, and found that the BRAF V600E somatic mutation is involved in the development of neural stem cells by using deep DNA sequencing. This mutation was carried out in an animal model to reproduce the

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