Brain Disease Research Advances with Gene Chips

Though there is no cure for the millions of Americans with epilepsy, recent advances using gene chip technology may have found a key to treatment for those recovering from seizure trauma. Researchers led by the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, Calif., report on using the gene chip technology that determines whether a gene is turned on or off by measuring its ability to bind to the corresponding DNA sequences on the chips. They compared the activities of 13,000 genes in two inbred strains of mice that show significant genetic variability, including in the ability of their brain cells to survive after a seizure (R. Sandberg et al., "Regional and strain-specific gene expression mapping in the adult mouse brain," Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 97:11038-43, Sept. 26, 2000). They were able to pinpoint several genes that varied between...

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