Telomerase Trouble

G.J.Griffiths imm3gjg7 at NOVELL2.BHAM.AC.UK
Sat Mar 30 12:42:05 EST 1996


So if it's true that the telomere length dictates cellular ageing, then 
what would be the easiest way to maintain it in cells? How would it 
posible to upregulate telomerase expression? Three methods spring to 
mind.
1) Find some way of injecting 'neat' telomerase into all cells. This 
would pose problems as it would not be actively taken up across cellular 
membranes. The only way around this I can think of is to somehow link it 
to another component that is hydrophobic and will merge with the 
membranes and release telomerase into the cell.
2) Insert the DNA sequence into all the cells genomes providing it with 
an 'inducible?' or constitutive promoter to allow over expression. The 
use of retroviruses that have been made safe could be employed to carry 
out this task.
3) Find out how telomerase expression is controlled by the cell. Isolate 
its promoter that initiates its expression and study it. It may be 
possible to find a component that will cause its upregulation. If this 
component is taken up actively by cells then it would simply be a matter 
of injecting it to give your cells a boost.

Does anyone know if any of these tasks have been attempted or if they can 
think of another way around the problem?

Cheers
Gareth




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