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A cross section of a mouse liver lobule under a fluorescence microscope. The middle layer reveals an abundance of messenger RNA molecules (white dots) for the gene encoding hepcidin, the iron-regulating hormone

Tracking gene expression patterns for 20,000 genes in 1,500 cells revealed a mosaic of activities 

Activity of a glucose-manufacturing gene in mouse liver tissue, viewed under a fluorescence microscope. A high concentration of mRNA (red dots) reveals that this activity is highest near a blood vessel (PP) that bathes the tissue in oxygen-rich blood, essential for glucose manufacture

Fits and spurts of gene expression help the liver cope with change


Recent data show that roughly 220 million people worldwide suffer from diabetes. In 2005, an estimated 1.1 million people died...