Lack of functional alpha-lactalbumin prevents involution in Cape fur seals and identifies the protein as an apoptotic milk factor in mammary gland involution
Sharp, Julie A., Lefevre, Christophe and Nicholas, Kevin R. 2008, Lack of functional alpha-lactalbumin prevents involution in Cape fur seals and identifies the protein as an apoptotic milk factor in mammary gland involution, BMC biology, vol. 6, no. 48, pp. 1-15.
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The mammary gland undergoes a sophisticated programme of developmental changes during pregnancy/lactation. However, little is known about processes involving initiation of apoptosis at involution following weaning. We used fur seals as models to study the molecular process of involution as these animals display a unique mammary gland phenotype. Fur seals have long lactation periods whereby mothers cycle between secreting copious quantities of milk for 2 to 3 days suckling pups on land, with trips to sea alone to forage for up to 23 days during which time mammary glands remain active without initiating apoptosis/involution.
Field of Research
060199 Biochemistry and Cell Biology not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective
970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences
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