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Placenta Is A Rich Source Of Blood Stem Cells

Researchers at Children's Hospital Boston and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute report a surprising finding about embryonic development: the blood system begins to form not only in the embryo itself, but also in the placenta, the organ that nurtures the baby in utero. . Meticulous experiments in mice revealed that the placenta harbors a large supply of hematopoietic (blood-forming) stem cells. The...

Researchers trace evolution to relatively simple genetic changes

In a stunning example of evolution at work, scientists have now found that changes in a single gene can produce major changes in the skeletal armor of fish living in the wild. .. . "Our motivation is to try to understand how new animal types evolve in nature," said molecular geneticist David M. Kingsley, a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator at the Stanford University School of Medicine....

MSI releases 'moleculizer' - a new approach to simulation of intracellular biochemical networks

Dr. Roger Brent, President and Director of Research at the .the release of a new approach to simulation of intracellular.biochemical networks in the January 2005 edition of Nature.Biotechnology..The research article, entitled .describes MSI's discrete stochastic event simul...

Breakthrough method in nanoparticle synthesis paves the way for new pharmaceutical and biomedical applications

The Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (IBN) has developed a novel method to simultaneously control the size and morphology of nanoparticles, which can be used in pharmaceutical synthesis and novel biomedical applications. .. . Research Scientist Dr. Yu Han and IBN Executive Director Prof. Jackie Y. Ying have developed a fluorocarbon-mediated-synthesis technique that produces nanomete...

Bone Density Recovers After Teens Stop Injected Contraceptive

Lower bone density appears to recover in adolescent females once they stop using the injected contraceptive depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA), according to a study funded by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development of the National Institutes of Health. .. Previous studies had shown that women who use DMPA, marketed under the brand name Depo-Provera, experience a loss of...

Brain-injury rehabilitation depends on acetylcholine circuitry

The ability of the brain to recover from such injury as stroke or trauma depends on a particular circuitry of neurons that "talk" to one another using the brain chemical acetylcholine, researchers led by James Conner and Mark Tuszynski in the Neural repair Group at UCSD have discovered. Their finding in rats could help enhance rehabilitation to recover from such injuries by leading to the develop...

Of mice and men's (and women's) contraceptives

Mice lacking a special protein found only in germ-line cells results in infertility in both males and females, according to a new study from researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. Norman Hecht, PhD, Professor of Human Reproduction in Penn's Center for Research in Reproduction and Women's Health, and colleagues say that these investigations point the way to a new type of...

Six million Africans face famine because of locusts, drought

With locusts and drought having destroyed crops and stripped grazing land for six million people across West Africa, small farmers have started selling livestock cheaply and eating the seed corn they should plant during next month's expected rains, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said today. . .. "The people in these...

Human Eggs Can Develop From Ovarian Surface Cells In Vitro

Research has shown for the first time that human eggs may develop directly from cultured ovarian surface epithelium (OSE) cells derived from adult human ovaries. Oocytes derived from the culture of OSE cells developed in vitro into mature eggs suitable for fertilization and development into an embryo. These findings, published today in the Open Access journal Reproductive Biology and Endocrinolog...

Critical step traced in anthrax infection

Scientists at Harvard Medical School (HMS) have revealed details of a key step in the entry of anthrax toxin into human cells. The work, which grew out of an ongoing effort to produce a better anthrax therapeutic, shows that the protective antigen component of the bacterial toxin plays an active role in transferring the other two components of the toxin through the cell membrane. . The research,...

Scientists at Galileo Pharmaceuticals confirm inflammatory response linked to glucose levels

A team of scientists has discovered three molecules –?from a search of 58,000 compounds –?that appear to inhibit a key perpetrator of Alzheimer's disease. . .. Ken Kosik, co-director of the Neuroscience Research Institute at the University of California, Santa Barbara, headed the effort to find these molecules. The results of the study are published in the July issue of...

DOE's Office of Science sets up program to aid scientists displaced by Hurricane Katrina

The Department of Energy's (DOE) Office of Science has established a program to assist scientists displaced by the effects of Hurricane Katrina. . .. "The Office of Science would like to help in the effort t...

UC Davis researchers move biotechnology closer to replacing electronic pacemakers

UC Davis researchers have successfully used a custom designed protein and gene delivery system to restore normal heart rhythms in pigs with electronic pacemakers, reducing their dependence on implanted devices. This work suggests that scientists are one step closer to making bioengineering a reality in treating the more than 2.2 million Americans affected by irregular heartbeats. . The UC Davis...

Thinking the pain away? Study shows the brain's painkillers may cause 'placebo effect'

Sham painkiller prompts brain to release endorphins, bringing real relief to those in pain .. . .. Previous studies at U-M and elsewhere have shown t...

Space matters: Estimating species diversity in the fossil record

Estimates for the number of living species on earth range from 3.5 million to over 30 million but only 1.9 million species have been classified and described. Estimating historical biodiversity from the fossil record is an even more daunting task. . One tool ecologists - but not paleontologists - have traditionally relied on to identify patterns of existing biological diversity is a long-establis...

Can't serve an ace? Could be muscle fatigue

Fatigue could reduce skills and cause injuries and muscle weakness during sport because the brain does not consider the extra effort required for movement, Monash University researchers have found. .. . .....

Ants win a waxy race

Ever tried to defeat natural forces? Specialist ants are capable of running on slippery waxy plant surfaces in order to reach their nests and food supplies. Some Macaranga trees in South East Asia have waxy stems to protect themselves from ants and other insects. Only one specific ant is capable of running up and down the stem, in order to access its nest and food supply inside the stem. . Tanja...

Hopkins scientists uncover 'tags' that force proteins to cell surface

Discovery likely to streamline drug and vaccine development .. . Because proteins on the cell surface are "lock-on" sites for drugs and other molecules, as well as triggers of immune re...

Lands surface change on Alaska tundra creating longer, warmer summers in Arctic

A gradual lengthening of the snow-free season in Alaska's tundra, and a corresponding northward progression of the growth of shrubs and trees, may be creating a cycle of warmer and longer summers in the Alaskan Arctic according to a new study to be published in the Sept. 22, 2005, issue of Science Express. . The resulting atmospheric heating in the region of northern Alaska is equivalent to what...

Novel targets found for the development of drugs to complement, or replace, statins

Leading marine scientists for the first time have assessed dolphin and porpoise populations around the world which are severely threatened by entanglement in fishing gear and recommended nine urgent priorities for action in a report commissioned by the World Wildlife Fund. These nine projects highlight species threatened by bycatch that will most likely benefit from immediate action and will cont...

Shampoo detergent added to paint makes surfaces self-sterilizing

Adding a common ingredient in shampoo to paints and varnishes can create self-sanitizing coatings for frequently touched surfaces in public buildings that continue killing germs for months, according to research conducted by a multi-state consortium of high school students and retirees. . .. "Public buildings and...

Bacteria can survive for weeks on hospital surfaces

A major cause of hospital-acquired infections can persist for days and even weeks on environmental surfaces found in healthcare settings, including bed linens, computer keyboard covers and acrylic fingernails, according to research presented today at the 105th General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology. . Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a major cause of hospita...

Gaining ground in the race against antibiotic resistance

Antibiotic resistance has put humans in an escalating 'arms race' with infectious bacteria, as scientists try to develop new antibiotics faster than the bacteria can evolve new resistance strategies. But now, researchers have a new strategy that may give them a leg up in the race -- reproducing in the lab the natural evolution of the bacterial enzymes that confer resistance. . A team of scientis...

The roots of civilization trace back to ... roots

About five to seven million years ago, when the lineage of humans and chimpanzees split, edible root plants similar to rutabagas and turnips may have been one of the reasons. According to research by anthropologists Greg Laden of the University of Minnesota and Richard Wrangham of Harvard University, the presence of fleshy underground storage organs like roots and tubers must have sustained our a...

Evolution of life on Earth may hold key to finding life in outer space

Questions about the existence of life in outer space may have a surprisingly close-to-home answer, according to one University of Houston professor. .. . In addition to his Earth-based research, Fox collaborated with the Houston Museum of Natural Sc...

Retina adapts to seek the unexpected, ignore the commonplace

Researchers at Harvard University have found evidence that the retina actively seeks novel features in the visual environment, dynamically adjusting its processing in order to seek the unusual while ignoring the commonplace. The scientists report in this week's issue of the journal Nature on their finding that this principle of novelty-detection operates in many visual environments. . "Apparently...

Locusts' built-in 'surface analysis' ability directs them to fly overland

Swarms of millions of locusts have, since Biblical times and until our very own day, been considered a "plague" of major proportions, with the creatures destroying every growing thing in their path. . Until now, it was thought that the directions of these swarms were predominantly directed by prevailing winds. Now, Hebrew University of Jerusalem scientists have shown that a physiological trait of...

DNA traces evolution of extinct sabertooths and the American cheetah-like cat

By performing sequence analysis of ancient DNA, a team of researchers has obtained data that help clarify our view of the evolutionary relationships shared by the large predatory cats that once roamed the prehistoric New World. . .. Toward the end of the last Ice Age, around 13,000 years ago, North and South America were home to a variety of large cats such as the sabertooths (Smilodon and Homoth...

Discarded placentas deliver researchers promising cells similar to embryonic stem cells

Routinely discarded as medical waste, placental tissue could feasibly provide an abundant source of cells with the same potential to treat diseases and regenerate tissues as their more controversial counterparts, embryonic stem cells, suggests a University of Pittsburgh study to be published in the journal Stem Cells and available now as an early online publication in Stem Cells Express. . A part...

Displaced songbirds navigate in the high Arctic

By experimentally relocating migratory white-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys gambelii) from their breeding area in the Canadian Northwest Territories to regions at and around the magnetic North Pole, researchers have gained new insight into how birds navigate in the high Arctic. In particular, the findings aid our understanding of how birds might determine longitudinal information--a cha...

Once-dreaded leprosy 'replaced' by tuberculosis, say researchers

What caused leprosy ?a widely dreaded disease in medieval Europe ?to fade from the scene? By the 16th century, the scourge had practically disappeared there. .. . Their conclusion is based upon the examination of DNA from human remains from the ancient and medieval periods in Israel and Europe. In these examinations, the scientists found traces of both leprosy and tuberculosis bacteria in 42 p...

Einstein scientists discover how protein crucial for motion is synthesised at the right place in the cell

Researchers at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and the German Cancer Research Institute have shown how protein synthesis is targeted to certain regions of a cell--a process crucial for the cellular motility that governs nerve growth, wound healing and cancer metastasis. Their study appears in the November 24 issue of the journal Nature. . Led by Drs. Robert Singer and Dr Stefan Huettelmai...

Study uncovers placental microtransfusions lead to transmission of AIDS virus during childbirth

Transmission of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, from pregnant women to their infants sometime during childbirth is a huge international problem, studies have shown. Between 25 percent and 35 percent of babies born to untreated HIV-infected mothers become infected themselves. . .. "The question has always been how does the virus get from the mothers to the babies?" said principal investigator Dr....

Seaweed yields new compounds with pharmaceutical potential

Researchers have discovered 10 new molecular structures with pharmaceutical potential in a species of red seaweed that lives in the shallow coral reef along the coastline of Fiji in the south Pacific Ocean. . Some of these natural compounds showed the potential to kill cancer cells, bacteria and the HIV virus, according to research at the Georgia Institute of Technology. In fact, two of them exhi...

Brain activity related to processing faces is similar in people with, without autism

New brain imaging research at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill indicates that when people with autism look at a face, activity in the brain area that responds is similar to that of people without autism. . The finding is surprising, as it is widely known that autistic individuals tend to avoid looking directly at faces. The research also counters previous published reports that the...

Team led by Carnegie Mellon University scientist finds first evidence of a living memory trace

An international team of scientists for the first time has detected a memory trace in a living animal after it has encountered a single, new stimulus. The research, done with honeybees sensing new odors, allows neuroscientists to peer within the living brain and explore short-term memory as never before, according to scientist Roberto Fernández Galán, a leading author on the report who is current...

Sahara's edge studied from ground, air and space to improve water management

An international team worked on the verge of the Sahara to gather data on the ground and in the air, to be compared with imagery of the same region acquired by ESA satellites. The results will be used in support of an ambitious project to apply satellite remote sensing to improve monitoring and management of vast water aquifers concealed beneath the desert. . High-resolution radar as well as hype...

Microbes under Greenland Ice may be preview of what scientists find under Mars' surface

A University of California, Berkeley, study of methane-producing bacteria frozen at the bottom of Greenland's two-mile thick ice sheet could help guide scientists searching for similar bacterial life on Mars. . Methane is a greenhouse gas present in the atmospheres of both Earth and Mars. If a class of ancient microbes called Archaea are the source of Mars' methane, as some scientists have propos...

Health of Acehnese reefs in the wake of the tsunami shows human impacts more harmful

According to research reported this week in Current Biology, tsunami damage to coral reefs closest to the epicenter of the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman earthquake was occasionally spectacular, but surprisingly limited, particularly when compared to damage from chronic human misuse in the region. . Less than 100 days after the tsunami of December 26, 2004, a team of ecologists from James Cook University,...

Tracking the memory trace

Memory formation follows a dynamic pattern, allowing for retrieval from different areas of the brain, depending on when an organism needs to remember, said a researcher at Baylor College of Medicine. . That is what Dr. Ron L. Davis, professor of molecular and cellular biology at BCM, theorizes, based on his most recent report on the topic that finds a memory trace in Drosophila or fruit flies is...
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