A biology for development

A biology for development

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English
254 Pages

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Where will humanity stand at the dawn of the 22nd century? The answer depends on our determination to control the powerful transformations that accompany the beginning of the 21st: unprecedented demographic growth, ageing of populations, irrepressible migratory flows, dramatic reduction of some natural resources, disruption of millennial climatic cycles, rapid spread of new pathologies...
A number of these transformations are part of the generally complex, often inevitable evolution of our planet, not only geo-ecologically, but also in economics, politics, society... However, many of them present a challenge to development, that unique ability of human societies to improve their condition.
To cope with these evolutions and threats, the resources offered by science have never seemed so crucial, even if science alone cannot provide the answer. Nothing less than a scientific revolution is needed, a revolution that will give us more durable control of our destiny, leading to a world of greater solidarity and respect of our environment.
All, or almost all, scientific disciplines are concerned. But the life sciences are more than any other, already engaged as they are today in a process of profound change in their concepts, exploratory techniques and applications.

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Published 03 December 2012
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EAN13 9782759803293
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A BIOLOGY FOR DEVELOPMENT
A BIOLOGY FOR DEVELOPMENT
François Gros
Preface by JeanMichel Roy
Translation by Gill Ewing, Daniel Jones, Marcie Lambert and Rachel Stella
17, avenue du Hoggar Parc d’Activité de Courtabœuf, BP 112 91944 Les Ulis Cedex A, France
ISBN : 9782759804023
Printed in France
This work is subject to copyright. All rights are reserved, whether the whole or part of the material is concerned, specifically the rights of translation, reprinting, reuse of illustrations, recitation, broadcasting, reproduction on microfilms or in other ways, and storage in data banks. Duplication of this publication or parts thereof is only permitted under the provisions of the French and German Copyright laws of March 11, 1957 and September 9, 1965, respectively. Violations fall under the prosecution act of the French and German Copyright Laws.
© EDP Sciences 2009
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PREFACE..................................................................................................
GENERAL INTRODUCTION...................................................................
FIRST PART THE FABULOUS DESTINY OF BIOLOGY
I.1. HISTORICAL OVERVIEW.................................................................  I.1.1. The vision of the ancients ...........................................................  I.1.2. The naturalist epic and experimental physiology......................  I.1.3. In search of a unifying formalism of life (enzymes, metabolisms,  bioenergetics) ......................................................................................
I.2. MOLECULAR BIOLOGY AND ITS ACHIEVEMENTS .....................  I.2.1. Molecular biology of the gene (double helix, gene expression  and regulation, the “Central Dogma”) ................................................  DNA and the double helix.................................................  Gene function and regulation (initial concepts).............  I.2.2. The genetic code – The transfer of genetic information:  transcription and translation ..............................................................  Messenger RNA and the genetic code..............................  Protein synthesis..............................................................  I.2.3. Gene regulation – The repressor – The lactose operon............  I.2.4. The central dogma of molecular biology ...................................
I.3. GENETIC ENGINEERING – BASIC CONSEQUENCES – APPLICATIONS........................................................................................  I.3.1. Genetic engineering – Discovery – Biology of higher organisms  I.3.2. ExonsIntrons ............................................................................  I.3.3. Splicing.......................................................................................  I.3.4. Ribozymes and the world of RNAs............................................
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I.4. THE COMPLEXITY OF GENETIC MATERIAL IN “EUKARYOTES”  I.4.1. Chromatin compaction – Nucleosomes ....................................  I.4.2. Epigenetic modifications ...........................................................  I.4.3. Positive regulation – Promoters – Cisregulatory sequences...  I.4.4. Coding and noncoding DNA ....................................................  I.4.5. Repetitive elements....................................................................
I.5. GENOMICS – GENERAL DATA – CONSEQUENCES – APPLICATIONS........................................................................................  I.5.1. Structural and functional genomics...........................................  The “surprises” of genomics – The number of genes......  I.5.2. Genetic Polymorphism – SNP ...................................................  I.5.3. A Biology of molecular networks : transcriptomes – proteomes.  Transcriptomes – DNA chips...........................................  Proteomes.........................................................................  Protein interaction...........................................................  From genome to phenome...............................................  I.5.4. What is a gene? Systems biology ...............................................
I.6. A NEW INSPIRATION IN MOLECULAR BIOLOGY – THE WORLD OF RNAs AND THE PHENOMENA OF INTERFERENCE – THE RETURN OF EPIGENETICS...........................................................  I.6.1. The world of RNAs .....................................................................  I.6.2. SiRNA and microRNA ............................................................  Formation – Transport and matching of microRNA  (Drosha, Exportine, Dicer and Risc)..................................  Applications......................................................................  I.6.3. The return of epigenetics – When heterodoxy  becomes a symbol of openness ...........................................................  DNA Methylation.............................................................  Transcriptional repression of transposons.....................  Parental imprinting (differential expression of certain  genes of paternal or maternal origin)...............................  Inactivation of the X chromosome..................................  Histone modification and the role of histone variants  in epigenetic control............................................................
I.7. FROM CONTEMPORAY BIOLOGY TO THE CHALLENGES OF DEVELOPMENT ................................................................................  I.7.1. Reflections on contemporary biology ........................................  I.7.2 What can sciences do for a sustainable development?  The role of biology...............................................................................
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I.7.3. Health ......................................................................................... I.7.4. Agriculture ................................................................................. I.7.5. Environment – Biodiversity – Evolution .................................. I.7.6. Conclusion..................................................................................
SECOND PART BIOLOGY AND THE GREAT DEVELOPMENTAL CHALLENGES
II.1. HEALTH............................................................................................ II.1.1. Infectious diseases (the revival of microbiology, vaccines, diagnosis and antiviral therapy, zoonoses, prion diseases) ..............  II.1.1.1. The return of infectious diseases – Diseases of poverty –  Neglected tropical diseases ............................................................  II.1.1.2. Microbiology and its revival .............................................  General considerations....................................................  Factors in microbiology revival......................................  Genomics and virulence...................................................
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 bacteria................................................................................  Susceptibility genes..........................................................  Environment and reservoirs of pathogenic agents........  II.1.1.3. Vaccinology .......................................................................  Historical insights and generalities................................  Different types of vaccination..........................................  The challenges posed by AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis II.1.1.4. Zoonoses............................................................................  AIDS (the HIV virus).......................................................  SARS..................................................................................  Ebola.................................................................................  Chikungunya....................................................................  Avian flu............................................................................  Marburg, West Nile..........................................................  Recent studies...................................................................  II.1.1.5. Diagnosis and therapy of viral diseases – An overview ...  Antiviral therapies...........................................................  II.1.1.6. Prion diseases....................................................................  The “prion” protein PrPsc................................................  Prion diseases................................................................... II.1.2. Genetic diseases – Gene therapy..............................................  II.1.2.1. Historical aspects ..............................................................
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 II.1.2.2. The example of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) –  A school case ..................................................................................  II.1.2.3. Neurological affections.....................................................  II.1.2.4. Susceptibility Genes – Polymorphisms and diseases –  HLA genes ......................................................................................  HLA system and predisposition to diseases....................  Susceptibility genes and SNPtype polymorphisms.......  II.1.2.5. Gene therapy – The gene as a drug and gene surgery .....  The work of A. Fischer and M. Cavazzana Calvo...........  The strategy of exon skipping..........................................  II.1.2.6. Children’s diseases and congenital malformations ......... II.1.3. Stem cells and cell therapy (a hope in the field of degenerative diseases) ..............................................................................................  II.1.3.1. Developmental biology considerations ............................  II.1.3.2. Adult Stem Cells ...............................................................  Blood stem cells................................................................  Other types of adult stem cells.........................................  Neural Stem Cells.............................................................  “Plasticity” of Adult Stem Cells........................................  II.1.3.3. Embryonic Stem Cells ......................................................  Historical aspects.............................................................  Discovery of human embryonic stem cells and potential  applications.........................................................................  Risks..................................................................................  Somatic nuclear transfer (therapeutic cloning) –  Reproductive cloning in animals. ......................................  II.1.3.4. Ethical aspects of the use of embryonic stem cells .......... II.1.4. Ageing – Senescence and cell death (apoptosis) – Cancers ....  II.1.4.1. Ageing – General Considerations .....................................  II.1.4.2. Genetics and longevity .....................................................  Relationships between genomics and longevity in the  human species.....................................................................  The causes of physiological ageing.................................  Molecular ageing – effects of free radicals.....................  II.1.4.3. Cellular senescence...........................................................  II.1.4.4. Apoptosis – programmed cell death ................................  II.1.4.5. Apoptosis and Cancer .......................................................  II.1.4.6. Molecular mechanisms of apoptosis................................  II.1.4.7. Cancers..............................................................................  Epidemiological facts.......................................................  Cancers in the world and their growing incidence in the  developing countries...........................................................
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 Biology of cancer – oncogenes – suppressor genes –  repair system......................................................................  Sentinel genes...................................................................  Repair systems and cancers............................................  Epigenetic factors.............................................................  Epigenetic control of differentiation in cancer stem cellsII.2. AGRICULTURE – NUTRITION – FEEDING MANKIND – THE CHALLENGES OF MALNUTRITION – TRANSGENIC PLANTS (DATA, HOPES AND FEARS).................................................................. II.2. Agriculture – Nutrition ....................................................................  II.2.1. Feeding mankind – Data on the problem and the challenges  to be met ..............................................................................................  II.2.1.2. A world food crisis – The “return of hunger” ..................  II.2.2. Contributions of genomics .......................................................  II.2.3. Transgenic plants – Some general data ...................................  Principal types of modification introduced by plant  transgenesis with agricultural aims..................................  Drought and salinity........................................................  Other characteristics........................................................  Overall physiology – Nutritional value..........................  Plant transgenesis and health.........................................  Hopes – Reservations – Potential risks..........................  II.2.4. Livestock as a major component of human nutrition –  environmental effects and perspectives ........................................  Research............................................................................ Livestock and environment.............................................. Association between Agriculture and Animal Farming. II.3. ENVIRONMENT – ENERGY – BIODIVERSITY ............................  II.3.1. Energy challenges – Greenhouse effects – Renewable  energies – Biofuels ..............................................................................  II.3.1.1. Energy challenges – Climate change ................................  II.3.1.2. Non CO emitting energy sources................................... 2  II.3.1.3. Renewable energies ..........................................................  Photovoltaic......................................................................  Biomass.............................................................................  “Fuel versus food”.............................................................  Secondgeneration biofuels..............................................  II.3.2. Biodiversity...............................................................................  II.3.2.1. Identifying and protecting biodiversity ...........................  II.3.2.1.1. General data – Threats and concerns for a common  heritage .....................................................................................  The effects of global warming.........................................
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