October 9, 2012 13:00 — 0 Comments
Male DNA Found in Female Brain
Male DNA commonly is found in the female brain, most likely derived from prior pregnancy with a male fetus, according to new research from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. While the medical implications of male DNA and male cells in the brain are unknown, studies of other kinds of microchimerism — the harboring of genetic material and cells exchanged between fetus and mother during pregnancy — have linked the phenomenon to autoimmune diseases and cancer, sometimes for better and other times for worse.
The findings of this study appear in the Sept. 26 edition of PLOS ONE. Lead author William F. N. Chan, PhD, from the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Alberta conducted the research while working in the Hutchinson Center laboratory of J. Lee Nelson, MD, a member of the Center’s Clinical Research Division and a leading international authority on microchimerism. For more information, click here to read the full release.