In a new study that could help doctors extend the lives of patients awaiting liver transplants, a Rice University-led team of researchers examined the metabolic breakdown that takes place in liver cells during late-stage cirrhosis and found clues that suggest new treatments to delay liver failure.
Veterans exposed to explosions who do not report symptoms of traumatic brain injury (TBI) may...
A of researchers has found evidence that photosensitizing a virus's membrane covering can...
Johns Hopkins researchers report that people with chronic insomnia show more plasticity and...
In biology, as in real estate, location matters. Working copies of active genes—called messenger RNAs or mRNAs—are positioned strategically throughout living tissues, and their location often helps regulate how cells and tissues grow and develop. But to analyze many mRNAs simultaneously, scientists have had to grind cells to a pulp, which left them no good way to pinpoint where those mRNAs sat within the cell.
Using a 3-D printer, biomedical engineers have developed a custom-fitted, implantable device with embedded sensors that could transform treatment and prediction of cardiac disorders. An international team of biomedical engineers and materials scientists have created a 3-D elastic membrane made of a soft, flexible, silicon material that is precisely shaped to match the heart’s epicardium, or the outer layer of the wall of the heart.
One of the hottest debates in evolutionary biology concerns the origin of behavior: is it genetically encoded or do animals and birds copy their parents or other individuals? A classic experiment published in 2000 seemed to provide overwhelming evidence that a particular behavioral choice (whether individuals of a species of swallow breed in a small colony or a large one) is largely genetically determined.
Researchers report two breakthroughs in understanding lesions in the pancreas and its ducts and their role in pancreatic cancer: the development of the first mouse model that simulates a precursor lesion called intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasia (IPMN), and the identification of an enzyme, Brg1, that appears to help cause the formation of IPMN lesions while also suppressing another precursor lesion.
The list of the chicken's most lasting legacies may eventually include advanced materials such as self-organizing colloids, or optics that can transmit light with the efficiency of a crystal and the flexibility of a liquid. The unusual arrangement of cells in a chicken's eye constitutes the first known biological occurrence of a potentially new state of matter known as "disordered hyperuniformity."
A new University of British Columbia study identifies an important molecular change that occurs in the brain when we learn and remember. The research shows that learning stimulates our brain cells in a manner that causes a small fatty acid to attach to delta-catenin, a protein in the brain. This biochemical modification is essential in producing the changes in brain cell connectivity associated with learning, the study finds.
In all multicellular organisms, including people, cells make their own extracellular matrix. But in the lab, scientists attempting to grow tissue must provide a scaffold for cells to latch onto as they grow and proliferate. This engineered tissue has potential to repair or replace virtually any part of our bodies.
To provide caregivers with timely information about the clotting properties of a patient’s blood, researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital have developed an optical device that requires only a few drops of blood and a few minutes to measure the key coagulation parameters that can guide medical decisions, like how much blood to transfuse or what doses of anticoagulant drugs to administer.
To remain healthy, the body’s cells must properly manage their waste recycling centers. Problems with these compartments, known as lysosomes, lead to a number of debilitating and sometimes lethal conditions. Researchers have identified an unusual cause of the lysosomal storage disorder called mucolipidosis III, at least in a subset of patients.
Researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, have been studying the molecular mechanisms underpinning sleep. Now they report that the pathways of aging and sleep intersect at the circuitry of a cellular stress response pathway, and that by tinkering with those connections, it may be possible to alter sleep patterns in the aged for the better—at least in fruit flies.
Chronic stress that produces inflammation and anxiety in mice appears to prime their immune systems for a prolonged fight, causing the animals to have an excessive reaction to a single acute stressor weeks later, new research suggests. After the mice recovered from the effects of chronic stress, a single stressful event 24 days later quickly returned them to a chronically stressed state in biological and behavioral terms.
A region deep inside the brain controls how quickly people make decisions about love, according to new research at the University of Chicago. The finding, made in an examination of a 48-year-old man who suffered a stroke, provides the first causal clinical evidence that an area of the brain called the anterior insula “plays an instrumental role in love,” said UChicago neuroscientist Stephanie Cacioppo, lead author of the study.
University of Adelaide research has shown for the first time that grape seed can aid the effectiveness of chemotherapy in killing colon cancer cells as well as reducing the chemotherapy's side effects. The researchers say that combining grape seed extracts with chemotherapy has potential as a new approach for bowel cancer treatment - to both reduce intestinal damage commonly caused by cancer chemotherapy and to enhance its effect.
People living in cold, northern latitudes have bacteria in their guts that may predispose them to obesity, according to a new study. The researchers’ analysis of the gut microbes of more than a thousand people from around the world showed that those living in northern latitudes had more gut bacteria that have been linked to obesity than did people living farther south.
Using videos that claim to teach toddlers, or flash cards for tots, may not be the best idea. Simply talking to babies is key to building crucial language and vocabulary skills — but sooner is better, and long sentences are good. So says research that aims to explain, and help solve, the troubling "word gap."
Stroke hospitalization and death rates may rise and fall with outdoor temperature and dew points. Researchers studied a sample of 134,510 people who were 18 or older when admitted to hospitals in 2009-10 for ischemic stroke — a stroke caused by a blood clot that blocks blood flow in or near the brain. They then obtained temperature and dew point data during that period.
Ribosomes, the cellular machines that build proteins, are themselves made up of dozens of proteins and a few looping strands of RNA. A new study offers new clues about how the ribosome, the master assembler of proteins, also assembles itself.
Researchers are actively working to understand how the brain translates fear into action. Scientists at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) announced the discovery of a new neural circuit in the brain that directly links the site of fear memory with an area of the brainstem that controls behavior.
Scientists report that they have developed a novel compound that appears to protect mice against developing movement problems associated with Parkinson’s disease (PD). The research could one day in the future translate into a therapy that could halt the progression of PD and thereby prevent the symptoms of the disease.
A team of researchers used a novel genetics approach integrated with cardiovascular outcomes and lipid data taken from blood samples from study participants to target specific lipids in the blood. The approach allowed the team to rule out other behavioral or environmental factors that may contribute to heart disease.
Reviewing more than 20 years of neuroscience research into sex differences in brain structure, a Cambridge University team has conducted the first meta-analysis of the evidence. The team performed a quantitative review of the brain imaging literature testing overall sex differences in total and regional brain volumes.
Many people suffer from chronic inflammation because their immune systems overreact to ‘self’ tissue. Sydney scientists believe that a small molecule known as Interleukin 21 (IL-21) is a promising therapeutic target in such cases. The current study shows how much IL-21 contributes to inflammation. It also shows how important it is to remove IL-21 to reduce inflammation, even where there are other severe immune defects present.
Studying a cycle of protein interactions needed to make fat, Johns Hopkins researchers say they have discovered a biological switch that regulates a protein that causes fatty liver disease in mice. Their findings, they report, may help develop drugs to decrease excessive fat production and its associated conditions in people, including fatty liver disease and diabetes.
Inspired by tiny particles that carry cholesterol through the body, MIT chemical engineers have designed nanoparticles that can deliver snippets of genetic material that turn off disease-causing genes. This approach, known as RNA interference, holds great promise for treating cancer and other diseases. However, delivering enough RNA to treat the diseased tissue, while avoiding side effects in the rest of the body, has proven difficult.
In 2011, biologists at Caltech demonstrated a highly effective method for delivering HIV-fighting antibodies to mice—a treatment that protected the mice from infection by a laboratory strain of HIV delivered intravenously. Now the researchers, led by Nobel Laureate David Baltimore, have shown that the same procedure is just as effective against a strain of HIV found in the real world, even when transmitted across mucosal surfaces.
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