Crouse Health Online: Wellness is just a click away.
Share Share
  |  Connect with Us: 
large
med
small
Text Size
 

Health News



Gene Mutation Can Leave People Without Fingerprints

Gene Mutation Can Leave People Without Fingerprints

08/04/11

THURSDAY, Aug. 4 (HealthDay News) -- People with a rare condition where they are born without fingerprints may have a genetic mutation, according to a new study.

The findings, published in the Aug. 4 online edition of the American Journal of Human Genetics, could shed light on how fingerprints are formed as well as how genetic mutations can help uncover unknown aspects of human biology, the researchers pointed out.

"We know that fingerprints are fully formed by 24 weeks after fertilization and do not undergo any modification throughout life," the study's senior author, Dr. Eli Sprecher from Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center in Israel, said in a journal news release. "However, the factors underlying the formation and pattern of fingerprints during embryonic development are largely unknown."

In investigating adermatoglyphia, which causes people to be born without fingerprints (dermatoglyphs, or ridges on the fingertips), and also affects the palms, toes and soles, researchers examined a large Swiss family affected by the extremely rare condition. Not only were they all born without fingerprints, they also lacked the usual number of sweat glands.

Through genetic analysis of the family members with and without the condition, scientists revealed the disease is caused by a mutation in a gene found in the skin called the SMARCAD1 gene. They also found a short version of this gene was mutated in individuals with the disease.

"Taken together, our findings implicate a skin-specific version of [the gene] SMARCAD1 in the regulation of fingerprint development," Sprecher said. "Although little is known about the function of full-length SMARCAD1 and virtually nothing regarding the physiological role of the skin-specific version of the gene, it is tempting to speculate that SMARCAD1 in the skin may target genes involved in dermatoglyph and sweat gland development, two structures jointly affected in the present family."

The researchers noted that the findings may contribute to the investigation of other diseases affecting more than the skin.

More information

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation provides more information on fingerprint identification.

Copyright © 2011 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

OF INTEREST:
 

Latest News

Crouse Hospital Appoints Chief Information Officer
more >

MedEx Bedside Prescription Delivery Service

Free service offers convenience, patient education at discharge.
more >

Weight Loss Surgery

Is it right for you? Attend a free information seminar held twice monthly.
more >

Quality at Crouse

See how Crouse Hospital strives to provide the best in patient care.
more >

Cheer Up That Special Someone

Say get well or welcome a new arrival with a gift purchased right at Crouse.

more >

Make an Online Donation Now

Your donation of any amount helps support Crouse services & programs in a meaningful way.
more >

Shop Online Now

Say get well, thinking of you or welcome new baby with a unique gift from the Crouse Gift Shop.

more >