Navigation Links
UCI team discovers how protein in teardrops annihilates harmful bacteria
Date:1/19/2012

Irvine, Calif. A disease-fighting protein in our teardrops has been tethered to a tiny transistor, enabling UC Irvine scientists to discover exactly how it destroys dangerous bacteria. The research could prove critical to long-term work aimed at diagnosing cancers and other illnesses in their very early stages.

Ever since Nobel laureate Alexander Fleming found that human tears contain antiseptic proteins called lysozymes about a century ago, scientists have tried to solve the mystery of how they could relentlessly wipe out far larger bacteria. It turns out that lysozymes have jaws that latch on and chomp through rows of cell walls like someone hungrily devouring an ear of corn, according to findings that will be published Jan. 20 in the journal Science.

"Those jaws chew apart the walls of the bacteria that are trying to get into your eyes and infect them," said molecular biologist and chemistry professor Gregory Weiss, who co-led the project with associate professor of physics & astronomy Philip Collins.

The researchers decoded the protein's behavior by building one of the world's smallest transistors 25 times smaller than similar circuitry in laptop computers or smartphones. Individual lysozymes were glued to the live wire, and its eating activities were monitored.

"Our circuits are molecule-sized microphones," Collins said. "It's just like a stethoscope listening to your heart, except we're listening to a single molecule of protein."

It took years for the UCI scientists to assemble the transistor and attach single-molecule teardrop proteins. The scientists hope the same novel technology can be used to detect cancerous molecules. It could take a decade to figure out, but would be well worth it, said Weiss, who lost his father to lung cancer.

"If we can detect single molecules associated with cancer, then that means we'd be able to detect it very, very early," Weiss said. "That would be very exciting, because we know that if we treat cancer early, it will be much more successful, patients will be cured much faster, and costs will be much less."


'/>"/>

Contact: Janet Wilson
janethw@uci.edu
949-824-3969
University of California - Irvine
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. URI pharmacy researcher discovers new gene that regulates body weight
2. UCSF-led team discovers cause of rare disease
3. Team discovers how a cancer-causing bacterium spurs cell death
4. 23andMe discovers genetic variant that may protect those at risk for Parkinsons disease
5. Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center research discovers key to survival of brain cells
6. UNH researcher discovers research manipulated to support pro-eugenic beliefs
7. Research discovers genetic link to Barretts esophagus, esophageal cancer
8. Expert discovers simple method of dealing with harmful radioactive iodine
9. UCSF team discovers key to fighting drug-resistant leukemia
10. UCSF team discovers new way to predict breast cancer survival and enhance effectiveness of treatment
11. OHSU Doernbecher discovers new approach to drug resistance in aggressive childhood cancer
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/9/2016)... ... ... "I have gout, and I wanted to treat it naturally," said an ... relieve gout and pain caused by varicose veins. I drank it every morning for ... what VA doctors called the worst sinusitis case they'd seen and relieved gas, stress ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Mediaplanet today announces distribution of the latest edition of “Transplants,” ... up as an organ donor for the 123,000 people in the United States who ... save up to 8 saves through organ donation and enhance many others through tissue ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... , ... December 09, 2016 , ... ... through the Pennsylvania Cable Network (PCN) during the summer of 2016. The program ... Grant provided by the United States Department of Health and Human Services Administration. ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... , ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... Franchising Company LLC, announced the first national #QuackGivesBack campaign which supported local ... “This was our first franchise-wide Quack Gives Back initiative, and we’re ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... 08, 2016 , ... CURE Media Group, the nation’s leading digital and print ... Upstage Lung Cancer in efforts to combat lung cancer, announced CURE Media Group President ... “CURE Media Group is honored to team up with Upstage Lung Cancer in order ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/8/2016)... Australia Ophthalmic Lasers Market Outlook to 2022 Summary ... to 2022", provides key market data on the Australia ... of US dollars, volume (in units) and average prices ... and YAG Lasers. The report also provides company ... market segements, and global corporate-level profiles of the key ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... , Dec. 8, 2016  The global biosurgery ... 8.8% during the forecast period of 2016 to 2021. ... by 2021 from USD 18.21 billion in 2016. The ... rising incidences of sports related injuries and spinal problems, ... rising need of effective blood loss management. ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... , Dec. 8, 2016 KEY FINDINGS ... largest share of the market in 2016 and is ... can be attributed to a large number of surgical ... hold the largest share in the patient temperature management ... such as reducing loss of blood during surgeries, lowering ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: