Chinese scientists have for the first time found strong evidence of how humans became infected with a new strain of bird flu: from chickens at a live market. Chinese scientists compared swabs from birds at markets in eastern China to virus samples from four patients who caught the new H7N9 virus. The scientists found the virus from one patient was nearly identical to one found in a chicken.
The mystery of exactly how consumption of extra virgin olive oil helps reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) may lie in one component of olive oil that helps shuttle the abnormal AD proteins out of the brain, scientists are reporting in a new study.
Drinking coffee could decrease the risk of breast cancer recurring in patients taking the widely used drug Tamoxifen, a study has found. Patients who took the pill, along with two or more cups of coffee daily, reported less than half the rate of cancer recurrence.
Long-term exposure to air pollution may be linked to heart attacks and strokes by speeding up atherosclerosis, or "hardening of the arteries," according to new research. The study that found that higher concentrations of fine particulate air pollution were linked to a faster thickening of the inner two layers of the common carotid artery.
It sounds like science fiction but a team from the University of Exeter, with support from Shell, has developed a method to make bacteria produce diesel on demand. While the technology still faces many significant commercialisation challenges, the diesel, produced by special strains of E. coli bacteria, is almost identical to conventional diesel fuel.
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.
Ancient DNA recovered from a series of skeletons in central Germany up to 7,500 years old has been used to reconstruct the first detailed genetic history of modern Europe. The study reveals a dramatic series of events including major migrations from both Western Europe and Eurasia, and signs of an unexplained genetic turnover about 4000-5000 years ago.
By using swarms of untethered grippers, each as small as a speck of dust, engineers and physicians say they have devised a new way to perform biopsies that could provide a more effective way to access narrow conduits in the body as well as find early signs of cancer or other diseases.
Tamoxifen is a time-honored breast cancer drug used to treat millions of women with early-stage and less-aggressive disease. Now, a team of researchers has shown how to exploit tamoxifen’s secondary activities so that it might work on more aggressive breast cancer.
Researchers have shown that people with a certain kind of kidney disease have characteristic facial features that may reflect the genetic mutation they carry. Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease (ADPKD) is the most common genetic kidney disorder. In the UK, it accounts for around 1 in 10 people on dialysis and 1 in 8 of those with a kidney transplant.
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.
A lethal new strain of bird flu that emerged in China over the past month appears to jump more easily from birds to humans than the one that started killing people a decade ago, World Health Organization officials said Wednesday. Scientists are watching the virus closely to see if it could spark a global pandemic.
Mail-based bioterror attacks made headlines last week when traces of ricin, a poison derived from the castor bean and a common by-product of castor oil, was found in letters addressed to President Barack Obama, Mississippi Republican Sen. Roger Wicker and Lee County, Miss., Justice Court Judge Sadie Holland, according to reports from the Associated Press.
Scientists have identified patterns of epigenetic changes involved in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) by studying genetically identical twins who differ in autism traits. The study is the largest of its kind and may shed light on the biological mechanism by which environmental influences regulate the activity of certain genes and in turn contribute to the development of ASD and related behavior traits.
Pluripotent stem cells can turn, or differentiate, into any cell type in the body, such as nerve, muscle or bone, but inevitably some of these stem cells fail to differentiate and end up mixed in with their newly differentiated daughter cells.
In a serendipitous discovery, scientists have found a way to turn bone marrow stem cells directly into brain cells. Current techniques for turning patients’ marrow cells into cells of some other desired type are relatively cumbersome, risky and effectively confined to the lab dish.
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.
Scientists have identified 14 new genes which could have important consequences for future treatments of childhood arthritis. Researchers looked at DNA extracted from blood and saliva samples of 2,000 children with childhood arthritis and compared these to healthy people.
Researchers have developed a therapy for pancreatic cancer that uses Listeria bacteria to selectively infect tumor cells and deliver radioisotopes into them. The experimental treatment dramatically decreased the number of metastases (cancers that have spread to other parts of the body) in a mouse model of highly aggressive pancreatic cancer without harming healthy tissue.
Researchers studying aquatic organisms called Daphnia have found that exposure to a chemical pesticide has impacts that span multiple generations– causing the so-called “water fleas” to produce more male offspring, and causing reproductive problems in female offspring.
A massive study analyzing gene expression data from 22 tumor types has identified multiple metabolic expression changes associated with cancer. The analysis also identified hundreds of potential drug targets that could cut off a tumor’s fuel supply or interfere with its ability to synthesize essential building blocks.
Consuming grapes may help protect against organ damage associated with the progression of metabolic syndrome, according to new research. Natural components found in grapes, known as polyphenols, are thought to be responsible for these beneficial effects.
For the first time, human embryonic stem cells have been transformed into nerve cells that helped mice regain the ability to learn and remember. A new study shows that human stem cells can successfully implant themselves in the brain and then heal neurological deficits.
U.K. authorities say a 25-year-old man is suspected to have died from measles as an epidemic continues to sweep across south Wales. The outbreak has led to more than 800 infections and renewed discussions over the failure of some parents to vaccinate their children against the potentially fatal virus.
In 1999, researchers injected 19 people with a virus carrying a gene designed to correct a rare metabolic disease. Early results appeared promising: Among the first 17 adult subjects, the worst symptom was a fever, an expected response to the modified virus that carried the therapeutic gene. The 18th subject was Jesse Gelsinger, who died.