• Sat. Apr 13th, 2024

The Extraordinary Genetic Discovery: A 6-legged Mouse Embryo with an Unusual Fusion of Spinal Cord and Limbs

BySamantha Jones

Apr 3, 2024
Creating a six-legged mouse for the first time

In Portugal, scientists have made a unique discovery by creating a 6-legged mouse embryo with an extra pair of hind legs instead of external genitalia. Moisés Mallo, a biologist at the Gulbenkian Institute of Sciences in Oerias, Portugal, and his colleagues are studying the role of a receptor protein called Tgfbr1 in embryonic development.

The Tgfbr1 gene codes for a protein called transforming growth factor beta type 1 receptor, which is involved in cellular responses like cell growth and division. Mutations in this gene can increase the risk of skin cancer. The researchers discovered that by stopping the activity of the Tgfbr1 gene in mouse embryos during pregnancy, they could study its effects on spinal cord development.

The team found that Tgfbr1 dictates whether structures develop into genitals or legs. This means that by inactivating the protein, they could alter the activity of other genes, resulting in mice with extra legs and no external genitalia. The researchers plan to investigate how Tgfbr1 and related genes affect other systems, such as cancer metastasis, and whether similar processes occur in reptiles with double penises.

The embryos used in the study were collected from mice aged 3-6 months. The research team dissected the embryos and analyzed them further without distinguishing between male and female embryos since their external genitalia do not differ. Further research will focus on understanding the broader implications of the Tgfbr1 gene in development and disease.

In conclusion, this groundbreaking discovery has opened up new avenues for research into embryonic development and genetic disorders.

By Samantha Jones

As a dedicated content writer at newszxcv.com, I bring a passion for storytelling and a keen eye for detail to every piece I create. With a background in journalism and a love for crafting engaging narratives, I strive to deliver informative and captivating content that resonates with our readers. Whether I'm covering breaking news or delving into in-depth features, my goal is to inform, entertain, and inspire through the power of words. Join me on this journey as we explore the ever-evolving world of news together.

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