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Robot May Accelerate Trials for Stroke Medications

February 12, 2014 12:12 pm | News | Comments

The development of drugs to treat acute stroke or aid in stroke recovery is an endeavor that only rarely pays off in the form of approval. Drug companies spend years testing safety and dosage in the clinic, only to find in Phase 3 clinical efficacy trials have little to no benefit. A robot developed at MIT may help speed up drug development, letting companies know earlier in the process whether a drug will work in stroke patients.

Drug Discovery Potential of Natural Microbial Genomes

January 23, 2014 12:58 pm | News | Comments

Scientists at UCSD developed a new genetic platform that allows efficient production of naturally occurring molecules, and have used it to produce a novel antibiotic compound. The scientists harvested a set of genes predicted to encode a natural product from ocean bacteria, then used synthetic biology technology to identify and test a new antibiotic – taromycin A – found to be effective in fighting drug-resistant MRSA.

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.


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.

On-demand Vaccines Possible with Engineered Nanoparticles

January 8, 2014 11:58 am | News | Comments

Engineers hope a new type of vaccine they have shown to work in mice will one day make it cheaper and easy to manufacture on-demand vaccines for humans. Immunizations could be administered within minutes where and when a disease is breaking out.

Scientists Uncover Detailed Picture of Muscular Dystrophy Defect

January 2, 2014 12:04 pm | News | Comments

Scientists have revealed an atomic-level view of a genetic defect that causes a form of muscular dystrophy, myotonic dystrophy type 2, and have used this information to design drug candidates with potential to counter those defects.      

Low Oxygen Conditions Promote Breast Cancer Spread

December 26, 2013 11:40 am | News | Comments

Biologists at The Johns Hopkins University have discovered that low oxygen conditions, which often persist inside tumors, are sufficient to initiate a molecular chain of events that transforms breast cancer cells from being rigid and stationery to mobile and invasive. 

First Structure of Enzyme that Removes Methylation Obtained

December 26, 2013 11:28 am | News | Comments

Scientists have obtained the first detailed molecular structure of a member of the Tet family of enzymes. The finding is important for the field of epigenetics because Tet enzymes chemically modify DNA, changing signposts that tell the cell's machinery "this gene is shut off" into other signs that say "ready for a change."


New Drug Candidates for Chagas Disease Show Promise

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

A team of researchers from Canada has developed a class of compounds which may help eradicate a neglected tropical disease that is currently hard to kill in its chronic form. The research was published ahead of print in Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy.

Innovative Screening Strategy Uncovers New Drugs, Biology

December 23, 2013 11:15 am | News | Comments

Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) have demonstrated a drug-discovery strategy with a double payoff—it enables the rapid selection of chemical compounds that have a desired effect on cells and also highlights how the compounds work. To illustrate the power of the innovative technique, the TSRI researchers used it to identify a compound that shows promise for treating obesity-linked diabetes. Learn more...

Study IDs, Breaks Down 'Wall' Around Tumors

December 20, 2013 12:12 pm | News | Comments

Researchers have identified how the ‘wall’ around cancer tumors functions and how to break it down, enabling the body’s own defenses to reach and kill the cancer cells within.                     

One Step Closer to a 'Universal' Flu Vaccine

December 20, 2013 11:49 am | News | Comments

Researchers report promising steps toward the creation of a universal flu vaccine, one that could be produced more quickly and offer broader protection than the virus-specific inoculants available today.              

Lessening X-ray Damage is Healthy for Protein Discovery

December 19, 2013 11:18 am | News | Comments

New recommendations for using X-rays promise to speed investigations aimed at understanding the structure and function of biologically important proteins– information critical to the development of new drugs.            


ALS Toxicity Reduced in Animal Models

December 17, 2013 11:10 am | News | Comments

In a new study researchers have found a way of reducing ALS disease toxicity, which slows the dysfunction of neurons and shows that a parallel mechanism can reduce toxicity in mammalian cells.                   

Antibodies Block Malaria Invasion

December 16, 2013 11:43 am | News | Comments

Scientists have discovered a key process during the invasion of the blood cell by the Malaria parasite, and more importantly, found a way to block this invasion.                          

Hearts of Men, Women Affected Differently by Diabetes Meds

December 13, 2013 12:51 pm | News | Comments

Widely used treatments for type 2 diabetes have different effects on the hearts of men and women, even as the drugs control blood sugar equally well in both sexes, according to new research.                   

New Bird Flu Strain Still Damaging After Drug-resistance

December 11, 2013 11:30 am | News | Comments

Researchers reported that a virulent new strain of influenza appears to retain its ability to cause serious disease in humans even after it develops resistance to antiviral medications.                   

Gene May Predict Human Response to Antidepressants

December 11, 2013 11:15 am | News | Comments

Researchers have discovered a gene that may reveal whether people are likely to respond well to SSRI antidepressants, both generally and in specific formulations.                           

Gene Therapy Promising for Hemophilia

December 11, 2013 10:52 am | News | Comments

Researchers have found that a new kind of gene therapy led to a dramatic decline in bleeding events in dogs with naturally occurring hemophilia A.                             

'Bubble Boy' Disease Treated with Gene Therapy

December 9, 2013 12:44 pm | News | Comments

Researchers reported promising outcomes data for the first group of boys with X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency syndrome (SCID-X1), a fatal genetic immunodeficiency also known as "bubble boy" disease, who were treated as part of an international clinical study of a new form of gene therapy.

Restoring 'Exhausted' HIV-fighting Immune Cells

December 3, 2013 12:35 pm | News | Comments

Researchers have identified a protein that causes loss of function in immune cells combatting HIV. The scientists report that the protein, Sprouty-2, is a promising target for future HIV drug development.                 

Killer Cocktail Fights Brain Cancer

November 25, 2013 2:53 pm | News | Comments

A novel immune-boosting drug combination eradicates glioblastoma brain cancer in mice, according to a new study.                                        

Team Creates 'Synthetic Antibodies'

November 25, 2013 12:05 pm | News | Comments

Chemical engineers have developed a novel way to generate nanoparticles that can recognize specific molecules, opening up a new approach to building durable sensors for many different compounds.                

New Link Between Obesity, Diabetes Found

November 21, 2013 12:15 pm | News | Comments

A single overactive enzyme worsens the two core defects of diabetes—impaired insulin sensitivity and overproduction of glucose—suggesting that a drug targeting the enzyme could help correct both at once, according to new mouse studies.     

Ultrasound, Nanoparticles May Help Diabetics Avoid the Needle

November 21, 2013 11:20 am | News | Comments

A new nanotechnology-based technique for regulating blood sugar in diabetics may give patients the ability to release insulin painlessly using a small ultrasound device, allowing them to go days between injections.           

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