2006-09-29

    El polen y la calentura.

    Hace más de un año comentamos sorprendidos el caso de una plantita que desafiaba las leyes mendelianas de la herencia genética. Básicamente el paper aparecido en Nature venía a decir que del cruce de plantas homocigotas nacían una pequeña proporción de plantas heterocigotas... con el alelo presente generaciones atrás. En su día enumeré qué mecanismos podrían explicar este fenómeno y cómo los autores habían descartado todos, uno por uno, hasta no quedarles más remedio que proponer una novedosísima teoría sobre un material genético "de reserva" desconocido hasta la fecha. Posteriormente se sugirió que no habían contemplado todas las posibilidades y que en realidad existía un mecanismo biológico medianamente razonable y dentro de lo que ya se conocía que podía explicar los datos presentados.

    Pues bien, hoy me entero gracias al amable Paleofreak de que la explicación es en realidad mucho más sencilla. Ya en Marzo apunté que lo primero que debería pasar es que alguien reprodujese los resultados presentados en otro laboratorio. Un año es tiempo más que de sobra. Según cuentan en esta noticia no será porque no se haya intentado. Sencillamente los datos no son reproducibles. Un laboratorio lo ha intentado y dice ser incapaz, tal como reportan esta semana en un artículo en la misma Nature.

    Mis explicaciones 1 y 2 de los datos se preguntaban si la contaminación con material ajeno al experimento había sido descartada. La primera posibilidad es que semillas de otras plantas vecinas de invernadero se hubiesen colado en el estudio, pero ya vimos que no parecía probable por el método de recolección empleado. Sin embargo la segunda posibilidad no estaba tan clara: contaminación por polen de otras plantas:
    2. ¿Cruzamiento no controlado de plantas homozigotas mutantes con individuos de tipo silvestre? Dicen que no porque se produjeron por autocruzamiento y las plantas que revierten el genotipo aparecen heterozigotas para el alelo parental. Esto no termina de confirmar que no pudieran ser fecundadas por polen de plantas heterozigotas, pero el hecho de que sólo sean heterozigotas para el alelo revertido es una buena evidencia de retromutación.
    Normalmente las Arabidopsis se autofecundan sin que uno tenga que preocuparse más por ello. Y, efectivamente, los autores no se preocuparon más por ello. Y todo el mundo confió en ellos, menos el laboratorio que no consigue reproducir los datos, que sin embargo descubrió que las plantitas mutantes para el gen estudiado tenían una curiosa tendencia a interfecundar. Cuando la línea mutante se cultiva en total aislamiento, es perfectamente estable (no revierte al fenotipo silvestre, como describían hace un año). Sin embargo cuando en el mismo invernadero se cultivan otras variedades junto con los mutantes, la descendencia empieza a mostrar cierta frecuencia de cruzamientos con otras plantas, demostrado por la aparición de genes transgénicos que no habían estado jamás en la ascendencia de la planta, aunque sí en las vecinas.
    Our results indicate that hth mutants are particularly susceptible to pollen contamination, possibly because the hth floral organ fusion defects lead to inefficient self-pollination and exerted stigmas, or because of changes in cuticle composition. This tendency to outcross may provide an alternative explanation for the apparent genetic instability of hothead mutants.
    Contaminación por polen. Así de sencillo. Por supuesto los autores del trabajo original se defienden. Sin presentar datos, eso sí, pero diciendo que los tienen y que, aunque reconocen la posibilidad de contaminación, esto no es suficiente para explicar sus resultados. Pos bueno, pero seguimos sin una réplica independiente de estos resultados suyos.

    Continuará...? Quién sabe. Pero que al menos esta historia tenga su moraleja: nunca es bueno publicar resultados con la cabeza caliente ;-)

Referencias (TrackBacks)

URL de trackback de esta historia http://evolucionarios.blogalia.com//trackbacks/43340

Comentarios

1
De: jose Fecha: 2006-09-29 20:34

un claro ejemplo de una de las últimas tiras de phdcomics... haces tu hipótesis y te pasas el resto de tu carrera defendiendola T_T



2
De: Gon Fecha: 2006-09-30 04:29

Mola. De todas formas tampoco es como para ponerse así... A mi también me costaría mucho reprimirme si descubriese -o creyese haber descubierto- algo así. Seamos un poco más condescendientes.
Veremos a ver cómo acaba esto...



3
De: Clastito Fecha: 2006-09-30 21:59

Hmmm buneo si ya no hay mutantes que revierten en aislamiento, es bastante decidor... pero quiero decir alog y es que nótese que si la idea tuvo éxito, no fue fuera de todo contexto, ya que herencia no mendeliana y paramutacioens se conocen en maiz, ratones, etc. y está el caso de rasgos determinados por la transmision de RNA del citoplasma espermático...digamos que la cosa no está todavía como para ponerse a llorar por la decadencia de la ciencia actual, recordemos que molecularmnet, se han concebido varios mecanismos posibles mediantes los cuales podría haber transmisión de rasgos sin DNA, y bueno, según yo, ni siquiera es necesario restringirse al RNA para poder ver cómo esto es posible... de hecho basta manejar una definición un porquito más amplia, e inteligente, de "herencia".



4
De: anso Fecha: 2006-10-02 11:24

Estoy seguro de que no es la primera ni la última vez que pasa algo así... por suerte (o por desgracia) la mayoría de investigadores en ese caso hubiesen dicho, menuda cagada, y ni se hubiesen puesto a comprobar que podía haber fallado... simplemente algo estaba mal...



5
De: Tiberio Fecha: 2006-10-03 12:03

Es decir, que si resulta que ha habido "contaminación por polen" eso se resuelve con una definición enculada de herencia. Mierdoso clastito.



6
De: El PaleoFreak Fecha: 2006-10-06 10:51

Un articulillo aquí



7
De: Maria Cristina Melo Fecha: 2006-10-06 18:06

Acho que já tinha começado a ler numa artigoo da "Science & Vie", n.º já antigo, 2004/2005??.

Vou ler com mais atenção.



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De: ana maria Fecha: 2007-01-27 00:38

quiero saber mas del polen



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De: AAV Fecha: 2008-02-07 01:05

Supongo que te debes haber enterado, Cybernesto comentó algo en http://www.the-scientist.com/2008/2/1/30/1/



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De: AAV Fecha: 2008-02-07 01:06

¡Eh!, no, Cybernesto comentó en la lista *escepticos*



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Inicio > Historias > El polen y la calentura.