Newly Uncovered Genes


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Melanoma, Colon Cancer

Scientists at the Weizmann Institute have identified a gene involved in the progression of human melanoma and colon cancer. The new marker for these killer diseases has important implications because it could eventually lead to the screening of large populations and early diagnosis. The gene, called Nr-CAM, was found by by the team of Prof. Avri Ben-Ze’ev of the Molecular Cell Biology Department. It is highly expressed in human melanoma cells and colon cancer tissue. Further research will be done to learn more about the gene’s role in the development of these cancers.
Prof. Avri Ben-Ze’ev is the incumbent of the Samuel Lunenfeld-Reuben Kunin Chair of Genetics. His research is supported by the M.D. Moross Institute for Cancer Research; the Yad Abraham Center for Cancer Diagnostics and Therapy; and the late Maria Zondek.

Anemia (Type CDA-1)

A combined effort by scientists at the Schneider Children’s Medical Center and the Weizmann Institute of Science has led to the discovery of a gene responsible for congenital dyserythropoietic anemia-1 (CDA-1), found mainly in Bedouin families.
The findings could lead to effective detection and eventually to treatment of the disease. In addition, understanding the role of this gene’s protein product could provide important clues to other types of anemia as well as to the general mechanisms of blood cell formation. Leading the Weizmann team was Prof. Doron Lancet of the Molecular Genetics Department. Prof. Hannah Tamary headed the Schneider team.
Prof. Doron Lancet is the incumbent of the Ralph and Lois Silver Professorial Chair in Human Genomics. His research is supported by the Jean-Jacques Brunschwig Fund for the Molecular Genetics of Cancer; the Crown Human Genome Center; the Avraham and Judy Goldwasser Fund; and the Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach Foundation.