Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we will assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you will not see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Sarah De Val's paper "Venous Identity Requires BMP Signalling Through ALK3" reveals a major player in establishing vein identity.

Sarah De Val has published a major new paper in Nature Communications on 28th January 2019.

Sarah's lab aims to understand how blood and lymphatic vessels are formed, with the aspiration to use this knowledge to modulate vessel growth in pathologies. In particular, the mechanisms by which vein identity is established and maintained are currently very poorly understood, but it is crucial to understand these in order to improve our strategies of controlling vessel growth in order to successfully treat certain diseases. 

This paper identifies a major and previously unsuspected role for Bone Morphogenetic Proteins in the acquisition and maintenance of vein identity, through a detailed analysis of early vascular patterning in mice and zebrafish. BMPs are a group of growth factors originally discovered by their ability to induce the formation of bone and cartilage.

This work places BMP signalling at the top of a regulatory cascade that activates venous identity. It represents a fundamental advance in both our knowledge of vascular development and our understanding of the role of the BMP pathway. It also provides a wealth of novel targets for therapeutic manipulations of vascular growth, for example, in heart disease and cancer. - Associate Professor Sarah De Val

The full paper can be viewed here.

Similar stories

REF 2021 results

Oxford Parkinson’s Disease Centre awarded £3.8 million to reveal the role of calcium in Parkinson’s

A collaborative research team led by the Oxford Parkinson’s Disease Centre (OPDC) has been awarded a £3.8 million Wellcome Trust Collaborative Award to study the function of calcium in dopamine neurons, and how this is plays a role in Parkinson’s. Their research will help explain how and why dopamine neurons are vulnerable in the disease and look at how they may be preserved.

The effect of nuclear pH on cardiac gene expression

Research led by Dr Alzbeta Hulikova and Professor Pawel Swietach has, for the first time, described the potential regulation of nuclear acid-base chemistry in neonatal and adult cardiomyocytes, and explained its relevance in the context of heart physiology and pathology.

A role of sleep in tinnitus identified for the first time

Phantom percepts, such as subjective tinnitus, are driven by fundamental changes in spontaneous brain activity. Sleep is a natural example of major shifts in spontaneous brain activity and perceptual state, suggesting an interaction between sleep and tinnitus that has so far been little considered. In a new collaborative review article from DPAG’s auditory and sleep neuroscientists, tinnitus and sleep research is brought together for the first time, and, in conclusion, they propose a fundamental relationship between natural brain dynamics and the expression and pathogenesis of tinnitus.

An unexpected role for the cell’s largest membrane network

A new Klemm Lab-led paper has uncovered a new mechanism involving the endoplasmic reticulum that is critical to the organisation and position of the microtubule (MT) cytoskeleton, which ultimately dictates the shape and function of our body’s cells.