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Scientists Create Potent, Improved Version of Anticancer Drug

September 17, 2013 11:49 am | News | Comments

Scientists have found a way to make dramatic improvements to the cancer cell-killing power of vinblastine, one of the most successful chemotherapy drugs of the past few decades. The team’s modified versions of vinblastine showed 10 to 200 times greater potency than the clinical drug.

Depleting ‘Traitor’ Immune Cells Slows Cancer Mice

September 17, 2013 11:18 am | News | Comments

Most cancer drugs try to treat the disease by killing fast-growing cells, but another approach called immunotherapy tries to stimulate a person’s own immune system to attack the cancer itself. In a new study, scientists have developed a strategy to slow tumor growth and prolong survival in mice with cancer by targeting and destroying a type of cell that dampens the body’s immune response to cancer.

Drug-resistant Bacteria Kill More than 23,000 Annually

September 16, 2013 1:07 pm | by MIKE STOBBE AND LINDSEY TANNER, Associated Press | News | Comments

For the first time, the government is estimating how many people die from drug-resistant bacteria each year - more than 23,000, or about as many as those killed annually by flu. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released the number to spotlight the growing threat of germs that are hard to treat because they've become resistant to drugs.

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Obesity Damages Brain-Stomach Communication

September 16, 2013 12:38 pm | News | Comments

The way the stomach detects and tells our brains how full we are becomes damaged in obese people but does not return to normal once they lose weight, according to new research. Researchers believe this could be a key reason why most people who lose weight on a diet eventually put that weight back on.

Path That Makes Antidepressants Act Quicker Discovered

September 16, 2013 12:25 pm | News | Comments

The reasons behind why it often takes people several weeks to feel the effect of newly prescribed antidepressants remains somewhat of a mystery– and likely, a frustration to both patients and physicians. Researchers have been working to find out why and if there is anything that can be done to shorten the time in which antidepressants kick in.

Smartphone 'Microscope' Detects a Single Virus

September 16, 2013 12:09 pm | News | Comments

Your smartphone now can see what the naked eye cannot: A single virus and bits of material less than one-thousandth of the width of a human hair. A team of researchers has created a portable smartphone attachment that can be used to perform sophisticated field testing to detect viruses and bacteria without the need for bulky and expensive microscopes and lab equipment. 

Infection-linked Blood Cell Plays Role in Metabolism

September 16, 2013 12:02 pm | News | Comments

A new link between meal times and daily changes in the immune system has been identified by UC researchers, and has led them to question assumptions about the roles of specific immune cells in infection and allergy. A white blood cell of the immune system that is thought to fight parasitic worms might actually help the invaders, according the research.

DNA Damage May Cause ALS

September 16, 2013 11:27 am | News | Comments

Neuroscientists have found new evidence that suggests that a failure to repair damaged DNA could underlie not only ALS, but also other neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease. These findings imply that drugs that bolster neurons’ DNA-repair capacity could help ALS patients.

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Specific Sugar Molecule Causes Cancer Cell Growth

September 16, 2013 10:57 am | News | Comments

The process of glycosylation, where sugar molecules are attached to proteins, has long been of interest to scientists, particularly because certain sugar molecules are present in very high numbers in cancer cells. It now turns out that these sugar molecules are not only present, but actually aid the growth of the malignant cells.

Molecular Structure Reveals How HIV Infects Cells

September 13, 2013 11:54 am | News | Comments

In a long-awaited finding, a team of Chinese and US scientists has determined the high-resolution atomic structure of a cell-surface receptor that most strains of HIV use to get into human immune cells. The researchers also showed where maraviroc, an HIV drug, attaches to cells and blocks HIV’s entry.

Test Could Identify Which Prostate Cancers Require Treatment

September 13, 2013 11:36 am | News | Comments

The level of expression of three genes associated with aging can be used to predict whether seemingly low-risk prostate cancer will remain slow-growing, according to researchers. Using this biomarker could help physicians better determine which men with early prostate cancer should be spared the risks of prostate removal or other invasive treatment.

Obesity Associated with Occasional Migraines

September 12, 2013 12:35 pm | News | Comments

People who get occasional migraines are more likely to be obese than people who do not have migraines, according to a new study. Previous studies have shown a link between people with chronic migraine and obesity, but the research has been conflicting on whether that link existed for those with less frequent attacks.

T-rays Can Potentially Diagnosis Early Melanoma

September 12, 2013 12:25 pm | News | Comments

Terahertz radiation, the technology that peeks underneath clothing at airport security screening check points, has great potential for looking underneath human skin to diagnose cancer at its earliest and most treatable stages, according to new research. 

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AIDS Vaccine Candidate Appears to Completely Clear Virus from the Body

September 11, 2013 2:18 pm | News | Comments

An HIV/AIDS vaccine candidate developed by researchers at Oregon Health & Science University appears to have the ability to completely clear an AIDS-causing virus from the body. The promising vaccine candidate is being developed at OHSU's Vaccine and Gene Therapy Institute.

U.S. Faces Crisis in Cancer Care

September 11, 2013 1:09 pm | Videos | Comments

Delivery of cancer care in the U.S. is facing a crisis stemming from a combination of factors—a growing demand for such care, a shrinking oncology work force, rising costs of cancer care, and the complexity of the disease and its treatment, says a new report from the Institute of Medicine.

Copper Destroys Highly Infectious Norovirus

September 11, 2013 12:54 pm | News | Comments

Scientists from the University of Southampton have discovered that copper and copper alloys rapidly destroy norovirus–the highly-infectious sickness bug. Worldwide, norovirus is responsible for more than 267 million cases of acute gastroenteritis every year.

MRI May Predict Heart Attack and Stroke Risk in People with Diabetes

September 10, 2013 1:18 pm | News | Comments

Whole-body MRI may serve as a valuable noninvasive tool for assessing the risk of heart attack and stroke in diabetic patients. Diabetes is a metabolic disease characterized by an increased concentration of glucose in the blood. There are 347 million diabetic patients worldwide, and the World Health Organization projects that diabetes will be the seventh leading cause of death by 2030.

Scientists Engineer Strain of MERS Coronavirus for Use in a Vaccine

September 10, 2013 1:07 pm | News | Comments

Scientists have developed a strain of the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) that could be used as a vaccine against the disease. The mutant MERS virus has a mutation in its envelope protein that makes it capable of infecting a cell and replicating its genetic material, but deprives it of the ability to spread to other tissues and cause disease.

Capturing Brain Activity with Sculpted Light

September 9, 2013 2:20 pm | News | Comments

Researchers in Vienna developed a new imaging technique to study the function of entire nervous systems. Scientists at the Campus Vienna Biocenter (Austria) have found a way to overcome some of the limitations of light microscopy. Applying the new technique, they can record the activity of a worm’s brain with high temporal and spatial resolution, ultimately linking brain anatomy to brain function.

Diabetes and Depression

September 9, 2013 2:19 pm | by Harvard Medical School | News | Comments

Diabetes and Depression

A New Approach to Early Diagnosis of Influenza

September 9, 2013 1:40 pm | News | Comments

A new technology is showing promise as the basis for a much-needed home test to diagnose influenza quickly, before the window for taking antiviral drugs slams shut and sick people spread the virus to others, scientists reported at the 246th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS). 

Synthetic mRNA Can Induce Self-repair and Regeneration of the Infarcted Heart

September 9, 2013 1:23 pm | News | Comments

A team of scientists at Karolinska Institutet and Harvard University has taken a major step towards treatment for heart attack, by instructing the injured heart in mice to heal by expressing a factor that triggers cardiovascular regeneration driven by native heart stem cells.

Researchers Uncover Genetic Cause of Childhood Leukemia

September 9, 2013 12:55 pm | News | Comments

For the first time, a genetic link specific to risk of childhood leukemia has been identified, according to a team of researchers from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, University of Washington, and other institutions.

New Gene Possibly Predicts Ovarian Cancer

September 6, 2013 10:22 am | News | Comments

Scientists have found a gene in mice that could protect against ovarian cancer and, if faulty, may increase the chance of developing the disease, according to research. This gene, known as Helq, helps repair any damage to DNA that happens when it is copied as cells multiply.

Inner-ear Disorders May Cause Hyperactivity

September 6, 2013 10:08 am | Videos | Comments

Behavioral abnormalities are traditionally thought to originate in the brain. But a new study has found that inner-ear dysfunction can directly cause neurological changes that increase hyperactivity. The study, conducted in mice, also implicated two brain proteins in this process, providing potential targets for intervention.

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