A previously unknown organelle has been discovered in mammalian cells

Research by the Swiss has shown that mammalian cells recognize, assemble, secrete, and store extrachromosomal DNA separately from chromosomal DNA. Some plasmids that terminate in the exclusive body come from outside the cells. Others are telomeric epitopes derived from telomeres. The discoverers report that in some types of cancer, plasmids are cut from telomeres, fuse and form rings. Scientists from ETH Zurich are the first to demonstrate that the cell nucleus disposes of such epitopes and stores them together with plasmids from outside the cell inside the cell in a newly discovered organelle.

This means that cells can distinguish their own DNA, which they need, from foreign DNA or DNA they no longer need, and thus remove it from the nucleus. This is one of the basic hygiene functions aimed at protecting chromosomes. Plasmids that cannot be separated can be attached to chromosomes and, in the case of plasmids from viruses and bacteria, translated into harmful proteins.

Scientists don’t know what other tasks exceptions might perform. Dr. Ruth Krushewski from the EHT Zurich Institute for Biochemistry believes they may be part of the cell’s immune memory. The scientist states that for years, scientists have been studying the protein that binds to DNA and may trigger a series of signals indicating the presence of inflammation. It is possible that this protein binds to the body’s exclusive DNA, causing prolonged inflammatory signaling. This stimulates the immune system, which may lead to autoimmune diseases.

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