Genes remain active, or even switch on, after death

Screen Shot at AM

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis.

Does death really mean the end of our existence? Great thinkers from Plato to Blue Öyster Cult have weighed in on the question. Now, a study shows that that at least one aspect of life continues: Genes remain turned on days after animals die.

At first, researchers assumed that genes would shut down shortly after death, like the parts of a car that has run out of gas. What they found instead was that hundreds of genes ramped up. Although most of these genes upped their activity in the first 24 hours after the animals expired and then tapered off, in the fish some genes remained active 4 days after death.

“What’s jaw-dropping is that developmental genes are turned on after death,” said microbiologist Peter Noble. The team also found that several genes that promote cancer became more active. That result could explain why people who receive transplants from the recently deceased have a higher risk of cancer.

ADVERTISEMENT

Read full, original post: ‘Undead’ genes come alive days after life ends

Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
GLP Podcasts
Infographic: Deaths from COVID-19 are far higher than reported estimates

Infographic: Deaths from COVID-19 are far higher than reported estimates

More than 2.8 million people have lost their lives due to the pandemic, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
glp menu logo outlined

Newsletter Subscription

Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend