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A Long Reach

Transcription factor KLF14 can work as a master trans regulator of adipose gene expression, says a report in Nature Genetics from a number of consortiums. For this study, the researchers looked at more than 20,000 genes in subcutaneous fat biopsies obtained from 800 female twins from the UK, and found an association between KLF14 and the expression levels of other distantly located genes. The findings were then confirmed in an Icelandic population. "Expression levels of genes regulated by this trans-eQTL are highly correlated with concurrently measured metabolic traits, and a subset of the trans-regulated genes harbor variants directly associated with metabolic phenotypes," the authors write. CNN's The Chart blog adds, "The findings mean that the KLF14 gene could become the possible target for treatment efforts to fight against diseases related to metabolism and obesity."