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Major new grants for gene expression studies

Professor David Murphy (left) and Professor Julian Paton

Professor David Murphy (left) and Professor Julian Paton

28 October 2008

David Murphy, Professor of Experimental Medicine, is the joint recipient (with Professor Julian Paton) of a £1.2 million BBSRC grant for a gene expression study, having also received a major MRC grant earlier this year.

David Murphy, Professor of Experimental Medicine in the Henry Wellcome Laboratories for Integrative Neuroscience and Endocrinology, is the joint recipient (with Professor Julian Paton in the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology) of a grant from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council of £1.2 million over 3 years for a project entitled ‘Gene networks involved in hypothalamic plasticity in response to dehydration; assessing the in vivo functions of candidate nodal genes’.

This follows on from a recent £1 million grant awarded to Professor Murphy by the Medical Research Council a few months ago for a project entitled ‘Transcription factor mediation of transcriptome changes and functional remodeling in osmotically stressed hypothalamic neurones’.

The driving force behind both projects is the need to rapidly exploit genomic information in order to increase understanding of physiology, for example the roles of each of the 30,000 or so mammalian genes. The work involves a peptide hormone called vasopressin, which is released when an animal is dehydrated and travels through the bloodstream to the kidney where it reduces the excretion of water, thus promoting water conservation. This is being used as a model system to study the functions of a gene network in the context of a whole animal physiological system, and the results should lead to a better understanding of the gene networks involved in the plasticity of a physiological system in health and disease states.


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