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Amgen, Illumina Team on Personalized Medicine Test

January 15, 2014 5:19 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Biotech drugmaker Amgen and Illumina, a maker of genetic testing equipment, said Wednesday they are developing a test that will identify patients who might be helped by Amgen's colon cancer drug Vectibix. Vectibix is approved as a treatment for colorectal cancer that has spread and hasn't rresponded to chemotherapy.

Training T Cells to Fight Their Own Cancers

January 15, 2014 1:48 pm | by Cynthia Fox | Articles | Comments

Immunotherapy—the art and science of training peoples’ immune systems to fight their own cancers—was named Breakthrough of the Year by Science. Prominently mentioned was an approach seeing clinical success: genetically tweaking patients’ own T cells to make them more potent, proliferative, and targeted.

Researchers Identify Key Molecular Components Linking Circadian Rhythms and Cell Division Cycles

January 15, 2014 1:24 pm | News | Comments

Researchers at the University of Cincinnati (UC) have identified key molecular components linking circadian rhythms and cell division cycles in Neurospora crassa, providing insights that could lead to improved disease treatments and drug delivery.

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Multihormone Reverses Metabolic Damage of High Calorie Diet

January 15, 2014 11:44 am | News | Comments

A single molecule, which acts equally on the receptors of the metabolic hormones glucagon and glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) improves body weight and diabetes through restored function of the anti-obesity hormone leptin.  Scientists found out that treatment of obese mice with this GLP-1/Glucagon co-agonist improves metabolism and body weight associated with restored function of the weight lowering hormone leptin.

First Comprehensive Test to Detect Genetic Modification in Food

January 15, 2014 11:26 am | News | Comments

As the abundance of genetically modified (GM) foods continues to grow, so does the demand for monitoring and labeling them. The genes of GM plants used for food are tweaked to make them more healthful or pest-resistant, but some consumers are wary of such changes.

Personal Care Products Possible Sources of Potentially Harmful Parabens for Babies

January 15, 2014 11:00 am | News | Comments

Through lotions, shampoos, and other personal care products (PCPs), infants and toddlers are likely becoming exposed to potentially harmful substances, called parabens, at an even higher level than adult women in the U.S., researchers have reported.

Authenticating Premium Chocolate

January 15, 2014 10:31 am | News | Comments

For some people, nothing can top a morsel of luxuriously rich, premium chocolate. But until now, other than depending on their taste buds, chocolate connoisseurs had no way of knowing whether they were getting what they paid for. Scientists are now reporting a method to authenticate the varietal purity and origin of cacao beans, the source of chocolate’s main ingredient, cocoa.

Tricky Protein May Help HIV Vaccine Development

January 14, 2014 11:53 am | News | Comments

Duke scientists have taken aim at what may be an Achilles' heel of the HIV virus. Combining expertise in biochemistry, immunology and advanced computation, researchers at Duke University have determined the structure of a key part of the HIV envelope protein, the gp41 membrane proximal external region (MPER), which previously eluded detailed structural description.

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Study Demonstrates Need to Change Scoring System for Heart Disease

January 14, 2014 11:44 am | News | Comments

A study led by researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine shows that one of the most widely used systems for predicting risk of adverse heart events should be re-evaluated. A surprise finding was that coronary artery calcium (CAC) density may be protective against cardiovascular events.

Benefits of Cognitive Training Can Last 10 Years in Older Adults

January 14, 2014 11:35 am | Videos | Comments

Exercises meant to boost mental sharpness can benefit older adults as many as 10 years after they received the cognitive training, researchers said. A multi-institutional team of researchers reported that older adults who had participated in the mental exercise programs reported less difficulty with everyday tasks of living than were those who had not participated, even after 10 years had passed.

Fish Derived Serum Omega-3 Fatty Acids Help Reduce the Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

January 14, 2014 11:12 am | News | Comments

High concentrations of serum long-chain omega-3 fatty acids may help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, according to a University of Eastern Finland study. The sources of these fatty acids are fish and fish oils. The Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study (KIHD) determined the serum omega-3 fatty acid concentrations of 2,212 men between 42 and 60 years of age at the onset of the study, in 1984–1989.

Swedish Doctors Transplant Wombs into 9 Women

January 13, 2014 2:15 am | by MALIN RISING - Associated Press - Associated Press | News | Comments

Nine women in Sweden have successfully received transplanted wombs donated from relatives and will soon try to become pregnant, the doctor in charge of the pioneering project has revealed. The women were born without a uterus or had it removed because of cervical cancer. Most are in their 30s and are part of the first major experiment to test whether it's possible to transplant wombs into women so they can give birth to their own children.

Y Chromosome "Going to Stick Around," Study Says

January 10, 2014 12:31 pm | News | Comments

A comparison of Y chromosomes in eight African and eight European men dispels the common notion that the Y‘s genes are mostly unimportant and that the chromosome is destined to dwindle and disappear.                

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Study Shows Promise for Preventing Resistance in Tumors

January 10, 2014 12:25 pm | News | Comments

A new study suggests that activating the tumor suppressor p53 in normal cells causes them to secrete Par-4, another potent tumor suppressor protein that induces cell death in cancer cells.                  

Blood Cells Take on Many-Sided Shape During Clotting

January 10, 2014 11:46 am | News | Comments

Researchers have found a new role in stemming bleeding and preventing obstruction of blood flow, explaining the need for speed in busting harmful clots.                             

New Approach to Studying How Variants Affect Gene Expression

January 10, 2014 11:40 am | News | Comments

Researchers have now developed a novel approach to study the ways in which genetic differences affect how strongly certain genes are "expressed"— that is, how they are translated into the proteins that do the actual work in cells.      

Researchers Develop Artificial Bone Marrow

January 10, 2014 11:25 am | News | Comments

Artificial bone marrow may be used to reproduce hematopoietic stem cells. A prototype has now been developed by scientists. The porous structure possesses essential properties of natural bone marrow and can be used for the reproduction of stem cells at the laboratory.

Easing Face, Hand Transplants

January 9, 2014 1:30 pm | by Harvard Medical School | News | Comments

Researchers have taken an important step toward improving the success of hand, face and other transplants that involve multiple types of tissue. The team described how a procedure to induce immune tolerance to organ transplants also induces tolerance to a model limb transplant in miniature swine. 

Mapping Reveals 110 MS Risk Genes

January 9, 2014 12:45 pm | News | Comments

Researchers have mapped genetic variations associated with an increased risk of multiple sclerosis (MS) and myasthenia gravis (MG), bringing science one step closer to understanding these serious autoimmune disorders.         

Brain System Can Naturally Moderate Stress

January 9, 2014 12:44 pm | News | Comments

Scientists have published new findings on a system in the brain, known as the nociceptin system, which naturally moderates the effects of stress.                              

Elephant Shark Genome Decoded

January 9, 2014 12:34 pm | News | Comments

An international team of researchers has sequenced the genome of the elephant shark and found new insights into the shark's bone formation and immunity.                            

Bio-inspired Glue Keeps Hearts Sealed

January 9, 2014 12:26 pm | News | Comments

Researchers have developed a bio-inspired adhesive that they say can rapidly attach biodegradable patches inside a beating heart— in just the places where holes occur in conditions such as ventricular heart defects.           

Rare Genetic Cause of Tourette Syndrome Found

January 9, 2014 12:13 pm | News | Comments

A rare genetic mutation that disrupts production of histamine in the brain is a cause of the tics and other abnormalities of Tourette syndrome, according to new findings.                        

Researchers Differentiate Between Microbial Good and Evil

January 9, 2014 11:48 am | News | Comments

To safely use bacteria in agriculture to help fertilize crops, it is vital to understand the difference between harmful and healthy strains. But can the microbial good and evil be told apart? Yes, life scientists and an international team of researchers report.

The Massachusetts “Obamacare” Model Works

January 9, 2014 11:21 am | by Cynthia Fox | Articles | Comments

The partial model for Obamacare—Massachusetts’ near-universal health care program, adopted in 2006—resulted in measurably improved health. According to a study conducted by researchers from Harvard University and the University of Michigan—with help from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)—the health of Massachusetts residents rose more in the first five years of the program than did the health of residents in other New England states.

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