Ten years ago the DNA sequence of the human genome was deciphered – the blueprint of our body. However, listing the single parts of a motor does not explain how it works. The same is true for the letters of all the chromosomes: Reading them does not explain how the genome regulates the necessary steps to develop from a fertilised egg to an autonomous individual.
How is the genome conducting the symphony of all the biological activities in a living organism?
New microscopic techniques allow us to study the organisation of chromosomes in the nucleus, with a big surprise. Different cell types sort their chromosomes differently. Silent genes are more in the periphery of the nucleus, while the active ones are found in the centre together with the transcription machinery. The review from Tom Mistelli in the journal Scientific American inspired me to read more about this fascinating detail of gene regulation.