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Starting Signal for Antiviral Defense

May 7, 2014 1:21 pm | News | Comments

Cells have to protect themselves against damage in their genetic material for one thing, but also against attack from the outside, by viruses for example. They do this by using different mechanisms: special proteins search out and detect defects in the cell's own DNA, while the immune system takes action against intruders. Scientists have now shown that the two protective mechanisms are linked by a shared protein.

Detecting Fetal Chromosomal Defects Without Risk

May 7, 2014 12:21 pm | News | Comments

Chromosomal abnormalities that result in birth defects and genetic disorders remain a significant health burden, as some prenatal screenings are a potential risk to mother and unborn child. Now, scientists are investigating a new sequencing procedure that can be completed without harm to mother or fetus.

Genetic Risk Factor for Premature Birth Found

May 6, 2014 1:44 pm | News | Comments

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have discovered a genetic risk factor for premature birth. The risk factor is related to a gene that codes for a protein that the scientists have found helps the body’s immune cells recognize and fight Group B Streptococcus (GBS) bacteria.


Microarray Scanner for in vitro Diagnostics

May 5, 2014 1:54 pm | Product Releases | Comments

The SureScan Dx from Agilent Technologies Inc. is a microarray scanner indicated for use in a clinical laboratory environment when measuring fluorescence signals of labeled DNA or RNA targets hybridized to microarrays used as part of a validated diagnostic assay.

Immune System Linked to Neurodegeneration

May 5, 2014 11:56 am | News | Comments

Researchers have demonstrated how genetic variations among healthy, young individuals can influence immune cell function. Many of those variants are also genetic risk factors for common diseases later in life, offering new insight into disease pathology.

30-year Puzzle in Breast Cancer Solved

May 2, 2014 1:29 pm | News | Comments

Scientists at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center demonstrate that mice lacking one copy of a gene called CTCF have abnormal DNA methylation and are markedly predisposed to cancer. CTCF is a very well-studied DNA binding protein that exerts a major influence on the architecture of the human genome, but had not been previously linked to cancer.

Automated Next Generation Sequencing Applications

May 1, 2014 2:21 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Beckman Coulter Life Sciences, through a partnership with Illumina, offers automated methods to improve processes and throughput in next generation sequencing (NGS) sample preparation. Under the agreement, Beckman Coulter will use its experience in automated NGS sample preparation to develop, distribute and support automation for Illumina’s TruSeq and Nextera sample preparation kits and Illumina will provide technical expertise on chemistry and protocols.

The Power of Personalized Medicine: It’s in the Stars

May 1, 2014 2:13 pm | Videos | Comments

This six-part video series from both Bioscience Technology and Drug Discovery & Development explains what personalized medicine is, how it works and the potential of this concept. In today's video, Rob Fee returns to discuss the power of genetic testing and preemptive medicine. But how do you learn if you carry risky genes, and most importantly, what do you do with that information? 


Novel Regulator of Key Gene Expression in Cancer Identified

May 1, 2014 1:58 pm | News | Comments

Scientists identified a key genetic switch linked to the development, progression and outcome of cancer, a finding that may lead to new targets for cancer therapies. The switch, a string of nucleotides dubbed a long non-coding RNA (lncRNA), does not code for proteins like regular RNA. Instead, this particular lncRNA acts as an on/off switch for a key gene whose excessive activity is tied to inflammation and cancer, COX-2.

Breast Cancer Clue

April 30, 2014 12:43 pm | News | Comments

Inherited mutations in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 tumor suppressor genes are by far the most frequent contributors to hereditary cancer risk in the human population. Now, investigators are reporting a new mechanism by which BRCA gene loss may accelerate cancer-promoting chromosome rearrangements.

Researchers ID 'Master Regulator' Role for Protein in Cancer Cells

April 30, 2014 12:29 pm | News | Comments

Researchers found that the protein DAZAP1 plays a key role in the regulation of many genes through a process known as alternative splicing, and when highly expressed in cancer cell line experiments, DAZAP1 was shown to inhibit several types of cancer cells from dividing and moving.

Research Sees Overlap in Altered Genes Found in Schizophrenia, Autism, and Intellectual Disability

April 29, 2014 12:53 pm | News | Comments

A multinational team of scientists presents new evidence supporting the theory that in at least some cases of schizophrenia, autism and intellectual disability (ID), malfunctions in some of the same genes are contributing to pathology. 

Variable Gene Expression in Zebrafish

April 28, 2014 2:10 pm | News | Comments

Early embryonic development of vertebrates is controlled by the genes and their “grammar.” Decoding this grammar might help understand the formation of abnormalities or cancer or develop new medical drugs. For the first time, it is now found by a study that various mechanisms of transcribing DNA into RNA exist during gene expression in the different development phases of zebrafish.


Tracking the Origin of Huntington’s Disease in the Brain

April 28, 2014 1:59 pm | News | Comments

The gene mutation that causes Huntington’s disease appears in every cell in the body, yet kills only two types of brain cells. Why? Scientists used a unique approach to switch the gene off in individual brain regions and zero in on those that play a role in causing the disease in mice.

Controlling Fear by Modifying DNA

April 28, 2014 1:15 pm | News | Comments

For many people, fear of flying or of spiders is more than just a momentary increase in heart rate and a pair of sweaty palms, it’s a hard-core phobia. Now, a team of researchers may have found a way to silence the gene that feeds this fear.   

Study Traces HIV Evolution in North America

April 25, 2014 2:53 pm | News | Comments

A study tracing the evolution of HIV in North America has found evidence that the virus is slowly adapting over time to its human hosts. However, this change is so gradual that it is unlikely to have an impact on vaccine design.        

Gene Mutation Connected to Key Symptoms of Autism

April 25, 2014 2:43 pm | News | Comments

Scientists have known that abnormal brain growth is associated with autism spectrum disorder. However, the relationship between the two has not been well understood. Now, scientists have shown that mutations in a specific gene that is disrupted in some individuals with autism results in too much growth throughout the brain.

‘Junk’ Genome Regions Linked to Heart Failure

April 25, 2014 2:27 pm | News | Comments

Large sections of the genome that were once referred to as “junk” DNA have been linked to human heart failure, according to new research. So-called junk DNA was long thought to have no important role in heredity or disease because it doesn’t code for proteins.

FDA OKs First-ever DNA Alternative to Pap Smear

April 24, 2014 3:20 pm | by Matthew Perrone - AP Health Writer | News | Comments

Federal health regulators have cleared a genetic test from Roche as a first-choice screening option for cervical cancer. It was a role previously reserved for the Pap smear, the decades-old mainstay of women's health.         

New Hope in Regenerative Medicine

April 24, 2014 2:10 pm | News | Comments

Researchers have successfully reprogrammed mature blood cells from mice into blood-forming hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), using a cocktail of eight genetic switches called transcription factors.                

Gene Determines If Aspirin Can Lower Colon Cancer Risk

April 24, 2014 1:00 pm | News | Comments

The humble aspirin may have just added another beneficial effect beyond its ability to ameliorate headaches and reduce the risk of heart attacks: lowering colon cancer risk among people with high levels of a specific type of gene.     

Breaking News: New Genetic Brain Disorder Discovered

April 24, 2014 12:09 pm | News | Comments

A newly identified genetic disorder associated with degeneration of the central and peripheral nervous systems in humans, along with the genetic cause, has been reported.                       

Gene Therapy May Boost Cochlear Implants

April 23, 2014 3:21 pm | by Lauran Neergaard - AP Medical Writer | News | Comments

Australian researchers have combined cochlear implants with gene therapy in an experiment that improves the hearing of deafened animals. Cochlear implants partially restore hearing by emitting electrical impulses that activate auditory nerves in the brain.

Enzymes Can Help Fix Cancer-causing DNA Defects

April 23, 2014 12:40 pm | News | Comments

Researchers have identified an important enzyme pathway that helps prevent new cells from receiving too many or too few chromosomes, a condition that has been directly linked to cancer and other diseases.             

How the Body Fights Against Viruses

April 22, 2014 3:13 pm | News | Comments

Scientists have now shown how double stranded RNA, such as viral genetic information, is prevented from entering the nucleus of a cell. During the immune response against viral infection, the protein ADAR1 moves from the cell nucleus into the surrounding cytoplasm.

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