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Protein Offers Clues to Spinal Cord Healing

July 26, 2013 11:33 am | News | Comments

The reason so many spinal cord injuries are permanently disabling is that the human body lacks the capacity to regenerate nerve fibers. Now, new research describes how a protein named P45 may yield insight into a possible molecular mechanism to promote rerouting for spinal cord healing and functional recovery.

Too Many NK Cells Can Block Immune Response

July 26, 2013 11:09 am | News | Comments

As part of the innate immune system, natural killer cells (NK cells) play an important role in immune responses. While researchers typically assumed that the body needs as many active NK cells as possible, scientists have now shown that the principle of “the more the better” does not apply to this type of immune cell. 

Silky Implants Can Stop Epilepsy Spread

July 26, 2013 10:45 am | News | Comments

Silk has walked straight off the runway and into the lab. According to a new study, silk implants placed in the brain of laboratory animals and designed to release a specific chemical, adenosine, may help stop the progression of epilepsy.

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Diabetes Cure May be Hidden in Botox Proteins

July 26, 2013 10:30 am | News | Comments

Scientists believe the proteins that are targeted by cosmetic surgery treatment Botox could hold the secret to treating and even curing Type 2 diabetes. A team of researchers is using new molecular microscopic techniques on SNARE proteins to solve the mystery of how insulin release is regulated and how this changes during Type 2 diabetes.

False Memories Planted in Mice

July 26, 2013 10:09 am | News | Comments

In a step toward understanding how faulty memories arise, neuroscientists have shown that they can plant false memories in the brains of mice. They also found that many of the neurological traces of these memories are identical in nature to those of authentic memories.

Breaking News: Height Linked to Cancer Risk

July 25, 2013 1:14 pm | News | Comments

The taller a postmenopausal woman is, the greater her risk for developing cancer, according to a new study. Height was linked to cancers of the breast, colon, endometrium, kidney, ovary, rectum, and thyroid, as well as to multiple myeloma and melanoma.

Blocking Biosimilars

July 25, 2013 11:38 am | by Ted Agres | Articles | Comments

As the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continues to finalize regulations to establish a pathway for approving biopharmaceutical or biosimilar drugs, leading branded drug manufacturers are looking ahead and lobbying state legislatures to enact laws that would limit the substitution of biogenerics for brand-name drugs.

Gold Nanoparticles Control Blood Clotting

July 25, 2013 11:13 am | News | Comments

Using gold nanoparticles, researchers have devised a new way to turn blood clotting on and off. The particles, which are controlled by infrared laser light, could help doctors control blood clotting in patients undergoing surgery, or promote wound healing.

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Key Molecular Pathways to Alzheimer’s Identified

July 25, 2013 10:55 am | News | Comments

Key molecular pathways that ultimately lead to late-onset Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of the disorder, have been identified by researchers. The study, which used a combination of systems biology and cell biology tools, presents a new approach to Alzheimer’s disease research and highlights several new potential drug targets.

Marijuana Linked to Adolescent Brain Abnormalities

July 25, 2013 10:19 am | Videos | Comments

Regular marijuana use in adolescence, but not adulthood, may permanently impair brain function and cognition, and may increase the risk of developing serious psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia, according to a recent preclinical study. Researchers hope that the study will help to shed light on the potential long-term effects of marijuana use.

Genetic Discovery Can Help Prevent Kidney Stones

July 25, 2013 9:59 am | News | Comments

The discovery of a gene's function in E. coli and other bacteria might lead to a probiotic to prevent the most common type of kidney stone, according to a new study. The team made the discovery during a study of genes in Acetobacter aceti, a harmless bacterium that is typically used to convert wine to vinegar.

More Than 275 Have Unidentified Stomach Bug in US

July 24, 2013 4:22 pm | by MARY CLARE JALONICK - Associated Press - Associated Press | News | Comments

Federal health authorities say more than 275 people in seven states have now been sickened with an unidentified stomach bug. The Food and Drug Administration is investigating the cyclospora infections, which are often found in tropical or subtropical countries and have been linked to imported fresh produce in the past.

Tiny Algae Gives Hope for New Biofuels

July 24, 2013 11:58 am | News | Comments

Newly trialed native algae species provide real hope for the development of commercially viable fuels from algae, scientists have found. The researchers have identified fast-growing and hardy microscopic algae that could prove the key to cheaper and more efficient alternative fuel production. 

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Immune Cell Attack Caught in Clearest Photos Yet

July 24, 2013 11:12 am | News | Comments

Scientists have revealed new images which provide the clearest picture yet of how white blood immune cells attack viral infections and tumors. They show how the cells change the organization of their surface molecules when activated by a type of protein found on viral-infected or tumor cells.

Brain Tumors Tracked Using PCR

July 24, 2013 11:02 am | by Harvard Medical School | News | Comments

Borrowing a tool from molecular biology, researchers have detected a tumor-associated genetic mutation in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of a small number of patients with brain tumors. The investigators used digital versions of the gene-amplification technology polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to analyze bits of RNA carried in membrane-covered sacs.

Biomaterials Can Benefit from 'Mussel' Strength

July 24, 2013 10:56 am | News | Comments

Researchers have unraveled the secret to byssus threads, the tiny natural bungee cords that mussels use to dangle loosely from rocks, piers or ships. Byssus threads, they found, are composed of a well-designed combination of soft, stretchy material on one end and much stiffer material on the other.

Biosensor Helps Athletes Avoid 'Hitting the Wall'

July 24, 2013 10:16 am | News | Comments

A new biosensor, applied to the human skin like a temporary tattoo, can alert marathoners, competitive bikers and other “extreme” athletes that they’re about to “bonk,” or “hit the wall,” scientists are reporting. The sensor could also help soldiers and others who engage in intense exercise, and their trainers, monitor stamina and fitness. 

Organ Donor with Rabies Had Raccoon Bites

July 23, 2013 4:21 pm | by ERIC TUCKER - Associated Press - Associated Press | News | Comments

An Air Force recruit whose organs were donated to four patients including a kidney recipient who died of rabies had at least two untreated raccoon bites several months before he became sick, and tests confirm his rabies-infected kidney caused the recipient's disease. Lab testing found evidence of rabies in the donor's brain tissue and also detected encephalitis, a brain inflammation that can be caused by rabies.

Antioxidant Blocks Cardio Benefits in Men

July 23, 2013 12:34 pm | News | Comments

In older men, a natural antioxidant compound found in red grapes and other plants– called resveratrol– blocks many of the cardiovascular benefits of exercise, according to results from a recent research project. The research unusually suggests that eating a diet rich in antioxidants may actually counteract many of the health benefits of exercise.

Stem Cells Essential for Cardiopulmonary Co-development

July 23, 2013 12:11 pm | News | Comments

In a new paper, a team of researchers show that the pulmonary vasculature, the blood vessels that connect the heart to the lung, develops even in the absence of the lung. Mice in which lung development is inhibited still have pulmonary blood vessels, which revealed that cardiac progenitors, or stem cells, are essential for cardiopulmonary co-development.

Breaking News: Stroke Protection Breakthrough

July 23, 2013 11:19 am | News | Comments

One of regenerative medicine's greatest goals is to develop new treatments for stroke. Stem cell research for the disease has typically focused on developing therapeutic neurons to repair damaged brain tissue. Now, a new study found that astrocytes can protect brain tissue and reduce disability due to stroke and other ischemic brain disorders.

Brain Circuits Control Compulsive Drinking

July 23, 2013 10:14 am | News | Comments

A research team has identified circuitry in the brain that drives compulsive drinking in rats, and likely plays a similar role in humans. They found they could reduce compulsive drinking in rats by inhibiting key neural pathways that run between the prefrontal cortex and the nucleus accumbens.

Fungus Linked to Worsening AIDS Epidemic

July 23, 2013 10:03 am | News | Comments

A type of fungus coating much of the stored corn, wheat, rice and nuts in developing countries may be quietly worsening the AIDS epidemic, according to a new study. Kept in sacks piled in barns and warehouses, food stores in countries near the equator are contaminated by Aspergillus flavus and A. parasiticus, fungi that produce a toxic substance called aflatoxin.

Skipping Breakfast Ups Heart Attack Risk

July 22, 2013 5:00 pm | by MIKE STOBBE - AP Medical Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

Another reason to eat breakfast: Skipping it may increase your chances of a heart attack. A study of older men found those who regularly skipped breakfast had a 27 percent higher risk of a heart attack than those who ate a morning meal.

Nano-coating Can Preserve Vaccines

July 22, 2013 11:19 am | News | Comments

For the first time, scientists are working on developing a ‘nano-coating’ that would protect a vaccine from its environment both in transit and for storage. Using the latest chemistry advances, researchers hope to show how nano-silica can be grown around individual vaccine molecules, enabling a vaccine to be taken anywhere in the world without refrigeration.

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