EUGENE, Ore. -- U.S. scientists studying zebrafish have discovered a genetic mechanism that leads to development of cleft palate.
By creating a genetic mutation in zebrafish, University of Oregon scientists found a previously unknown mechanism for cleft palate development -- a common birth defect in humans.
Many molecular pathways in zebrafish are present in humans and other vertebrates. By studying the induced mutation in zebrafish, the 10-member research team said it isolated a disruption in early developmental signaling involving Pdgf, a platelet-derived growth-factor protein, and a microRNA known as Mirn140.
The complex study appears online in advance of print publication in the journal Nature Genetics.
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