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'Lifespan Machine' Monitors Worm Aging

May 20, 2013 12:00 pm | by Harvard Medical School | News | Comments

The worm’s tail wriggles, a micrometer-scale twitch. A scanner captures the new posture. Software recognizes the motion. Life goes on in the Lifespan Machine, a new system devised in the lab of Walter Fontana that, essentially, counts dead worms.

Osteoarthritis Progression Halted

May 20, 2013 10:30 am | News | Comments

Scientists have turned their view of osteoarthritis (OA) inside out. Literally. Instead of seeing the painful degenerative disease as a problem primarily of the cartilage that cushions joints, they now have evidence that the bone underneath the cartilage is also a key player and exacerbates the damage.

Nanogel Secretes Insulin on Demand

May 16, 2013 11:49 am | News | Comments

Injectable nanoparticles developed at MIT may someday eliminate the need for patients with Type 1 diabetes to constantly monitor their blood-sugar levels and inject themselves with insulin. The nanoparticles were designed to sense glucose levels in the body and respond by secreting the appropriate amount of insulin, thereby replacing the function of pancreatic islet cells, which are destroyed in patients with Type 1 diabetes.

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New Drug Slows Alzheimer's

May 15, 2013 10:17 am | News | Comments

A drug developed by scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, known as J147, reverses memory deficits and slows Alzheimer's disease in aged mice following short-term treatment. The findings may pave the way to a new treatment for Alzheimer's disease in humans.

Gel Implant Restores Paralyzed Nerves

May 14, 2013 11:33 am | News | Comments

A team of researchers has invented a method for repairing damaged peripheral nerves. Through a biodegradable implant in combination with a newly-developed Guiding Regeneration Gel (GRG) that increases nerve growth and healing, the functionality of a torn or damaged nerve could ultimately be restored.

Product Roundup: Fume Hoods and Biological Safety Cabinets

May 10, 2013 2:34 pm | News | Comments

In any laboratory, safety of both the researchers and the samples are integral to a successful experiment. Fume hoods and biological safety cabinets offer protection from hazardous fumes with proper ventilation that will ensure the safety of all scientists in the laboratory and the samples they are working with.

Protein Reverses Age-related Heart Failure

May 10, 2013 10:53 am | News | Comments

Researchers have identified a protein in the blood of mice and humans that may prove to be the first effective treatment for the form of age-related heart failure that affects millions of Americans. When the protein was injected into old mice, the hearts were reduced in size and thickness, resembling the healthy hearts of younger mice.

Diabetes Cured in Mice

May 9, 2013 11:03 am | News | Comments

Researchers have made a significant first step with newly engineered biomaterials for cell transplantation that could help lead to a possible cure for Type 1 diabetes, which affects about 3 million Americans. Engineers and clinicians have successfully engrafted insulin-producing cells into a diabetic mouse model, reversing diabetic symptoms in the animal in as little as 10 days.

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Life Span Extended 25% in Fruit Flies

May 7, 2013 4:25 pm | News | Comments

Scientists have identified a gene previously implicated in Parkinson's disease that can delay the onset of aging and extend the healthy life span of fruit flies. The research, they say, could have important implications for aging and disease in humans.

Device Extracts DNA in Minutes

May 6, 2013 3:51 pm | News | Comments

Take a swab of saliva from your mouth and within minutes your DNA could be ready for analysis and genome sequencing with the help of a new device. Engineers and NanoFacture, a Bellevue, Wash., company, have created a device that can extract human DNA from fluid samples in a simpler, more efficient and environmentally friendly way than conventional methods.

Sex at Zero Gravity

May 2, 2013 1:38 pm | by Skip Derra | Articles | Comments

If the long-term goal of humans is, indeed, space exploration and colonization, then there are many survivability questions that need to be answered. Leaving Earth means leaving the friendly confines of a planet on which we have evolved over the eons and to which our bodies have adapted. And it turns out gravity has a role in successful sexual reproduction, at least for plants.

Physical by Smartphone a Growing Possibility

May 2, 2013 12:20 am | by LAURAN NEERGAARD - AP MEDICAL WRITER | News | Comments

It's not a "Star Trek" tricorder, but by hooking a variety of gadgets onto a smartphone you could almost get a complete physical- without the paper gown or even a visit to the doctor's office. Blood pressure? Just plug the arm cuff into the phone for a quick reading.

Hypothalamus May Hold Key to Aging

May 1, 2013 2:01 pm | by Einstein | News | Comments

While the search continues for the Fountain of Youth, researchers may have found the body’s “fountain of aging”: the brain region known as the hypothalamus. For the first time, scientists report that the hypothalamus of mice controls aging throughout the body.

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Cell Sorting Based on RNA Detection in Living Cells

May 1, 2013 12:10 pm | by Don Weldon, Yuko Williams, Alex Ko, EMD Millipore Corporation | Articles | Comments

Identifying cell types and sorting cells based on RNA expression levels without any transfection reagents or intrusive sample preparation can improve live cell sorting efficiency, physiological relevance, and post-sorting survival rate. SmartFlare RNA detection probes can detect levels of RNA inside living cells, providing the ability to sort and propagate live cell populations based on gene expression levels.

Researcher Invents 'DNA Bardcode'

May 1, 2013 9:13 am | News | Comments

DNA evidence is invisible and remarkably easy to transfer, making it possible for a sample to be spilled or even planted on a piece of evidence. A researcher has developed a solution that permanently marks DNA samples to prevent contamination. 

Mouse Brains Mapped in Greatest Detail Yet

April 29, 2013 10:44 am | News | Comments

Hopes for a cure for many brain diseases may rest on the humble mouse, now that scientists can map the rodents' brains more thoroughly than ever before. Researchers have created the most detailed atlas of the mouse brain, a development that is helping in the fight against brain disease.

Hormone is Potential Diabetes Breakthrough

April 25, 2013 12:47 pm | by Harvard Medical School | News | Comments

Researchers have discovered a hormone that holds promise for a dramatically more effective treatment of type 2 diabetes, a metabolic illness afflicting an estimated 26 million Americans. The researchers believe that the hormone might also have a role in treating type 1, or juvenile, diabetes.

Video Reveals How Drugs Kill Cancer

April 25, 2013 10:14 am | News | Comments

Scientists have discovered why a particular cancer drug is so effective at killing cells. Their findings could be used to aid the design of future cancer treatments. Using high-powered laser-based microscopes, researchers made videos of the process by which rituximab binds to a diseased cell and then attracts white blood cells known as natural killer (NK) cells to attack.

Novel Therapy Safe for ALS

April 24, 2013 9:24 am | News | Comments

An investigational treatment for an inherited form of Lou Gehrig’s disease has passed an early phase clinical trial for safety, researchers report. The researchers have shown that the therapy produced no serious side effects in patients with the disease, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The phase 1 trial’s results also demonstrate that the drug was successfully introduced into the central nervous system.

Gone, But Not Forgotten

April 23, 2013 12:16 pm | News | Comments

An international team of neuroscientists has described for the first time in exhaustive detail the underlying neurobiology of an amnesiac who suffered from profound memory loss after damage to key portions of his brain. In a new paper, researchers recount the case of EP, a man who suffered radical memory loss and dysfunction following a bout of viral encephalitis.

Finding the Needle in a Haystack

April 22, 2013 12:13 pm | News | Comments

A contact lens on the bathroom floor, an escaped hamster in the backyard, a car key in a bed of gravel: How are we able to focus so sharply to find that proverbial needle in a haystack? Scientists ave discovered that when we embark on a targeted search, various visual and non-visual regions of the brain mobilize to track down a person, animal or thing.

Food Poisonings Up from Raw Milk, Poultry Bacteria

April 18, 2013 12:09 pm | by MIKE STOBBE - AP Medical Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

Health officials are seeing more food poisonings caused by a bacteria commonly linked to raw milk and poultry. A study released Thursday said campylobacter cases grew by 14 percent over the last five years. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report was based on  foodborne infections in only 10 states- about 15 percent of the American population.

Memory Loss Reversed in Animal Brains

April 18, 2013 11:09 am | News | Comments

Neuroscientists have taken a major step in their efforts to help people with memory loss tied to brain disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease. Using sea snail nerve cells, the scientists reversed memory loss by determining when the cells were primed for learning.

Acute Stress is Good for the Brain

April 17, 2013 11:42 am | News | Comments

Overworked and stressed out? Look on the bright side: Some stress is good for you. New research has uncovered exactly how acute stress– short-lived, not chronic– primes the brain for improved performance. In studies on rats, researchers found that significant, but brief stressful events caused stem cells in their brains to proliferate into new nerve cells.

Decoding the Structure of Bone

April 17, 2013 10:28 am | News | Comments

The bones that support our bodies are made of remarkably complex arrangements of materials— so much so that decoding the precise structure responsible for their great strength and resilience has eluded scientists’ best efforts for decades. But now, a team of researchers has finally unraveled the structure of bone with almost atom-by-atom precision.

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