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Down in Biological News

Tracking down the causes of multiple sclerosis

This release is available in German . Over 100,000 people suffer from multiple sclerosis in Germany alone. Despite intensive research, the factors that trigger the disease and influence its progress remain unclear. Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology in Martinsried an...

SIRT1 takes down tumors

Yuan et al. have identified another anti-cancer effect of the "longevity" protein SIRT1. By speeding the destruction of the tumor promoter c-Myc, SIRT1 curbs cell division. The study will be published online April 13 ( www.jcb.org ) and will appear in the April 20 print issue of the Journal of Ce...

Cloud computing brings cost of protein research down to Earth

Researchers at the Medical College of Wisconsin Biotechnology and Bioengineering Center in Milwaukee have just made the very expensive and promising area of protein research more accessible to scientists worldwide. They have developed a set of free tools called ViPDAC (virtual proteomics data...

Getting down to cancer basics

Researchers have identified a new cancer gene - one that is common to many cancers and affects the most basic regulation of our genes. The new example - a gene on the X chromosome called UTX - is found in 10% of cases of multiple myeloma and 8% of esophageal cancers. UTX plays a role in overall...

Fowl soil additive breaks down crude oil

It is an unlikely application, but researchers in China have discovered that chicken manure can be used to biodegrade crude oil in contaminated soil. Writing in the International Journal of Environment and Pollution the team explains how bacteria in chicken manure break down 50% more crude oil t...

1 drug may help people both lay down the drink and put out the cigarette

A popular smoking cessation drug dramatically reduced the amount a heavy drinker will consume, a new Yale School of Medicine study has found. Heavy-drinking smokers in a laboratory setting were much less likely to drink after taking the drug varenicline compared to those taking a placebo, accordin...

Rooted plants move mysteriously down greenways, scientists say

GAINESVILLE, Fla. The wild pea pod is big and heavy, with seemingly little prayer of escaping the shade of its parent plant. And yet, like a grounded teenager who knows where the car keys are hidden, it manages if it has a reasonable chance of escape. University of Florida researchers work...

Tracking down the cause of mad cow disease

This release is available in German . The cause of diseases such as BSE in cattle and CreutzfeldJakob disease in humans is a prion protein. This protein attaches to cell membranes by way of an anchor made of sugar and lipid components (a glycosylphosphatidylinositol, GPI) anchor. The ...

New blood test for Down syndrome

Howard Hughes Medical Institute researchers have developed a new prenatal blood test that accurately detected Down syndrome and two other serious chromosomal defects in a small study of 18 pregnant women. If confirmed in larger trials, they say, the test would offer a safer and faster alternative ...

70 years old and going strong with Down syndrome and no dementia

Washington, DC (August 18, 2008) In the world of Down syndrome, 'Mr. C' is a rarity. A real person whose progress has been tracked for the past 16 years, at seventy, 'Mr. C' has well surpassed the average life expectancy of a person with Down syndrome, currently in the late fifties, but in the te...

Chips are down as Manchester makes protein scanning breakthrough

Scientists at The University of Manchester have developed a new and fast method for making biological 'chips' technology that could lead to quick testing for serious diseases, fast detection of MRSA infections and rapid discovery of new drugs. Researchers working at the Manchester Interdiscipl...

Study identifies brain pathway that shuts down seizures

Researchers at the University of Iowa and the Veterans Affairs Iowa City Health Care System have uncovered a brain pathway that shuts down seizures. The multidisciplinary team of scientists pieced together information from clinical observations made in the first half of the 20th century with k...

Pathway found that lets mosquitoes fatten up, slow down for winter

COLUMBUS, Ohio Two genes that help insulin regulate mosquitoes growth have been identified as key contributors to how the insects enter a dormant state to survive winters cold. The research finding broadens the understanding of the mosquito life cycle and appears to shed some light on how oth...

Fox Chase researchers discover a method for clamping down on a cancer-promoting enzyme

There are many pathways that allow an errant gene to turn a cell cancerous, and a number of these pathways go through a single enzyme called the p21-activated kinase 1, or PAK1. Researchers at Fox Chase Cancer Center have now identified a molecule capable of shutting down PAK1 before the enzym...

Researchers uncover details about how dietary restriction slows down aging

University of Washington scientists have uncovered details about the mechanisms through which dietary restriction slows the aging process. Working in yeast cells, the researchers have linked ribosomes, the protein-making factories in living cells, and Gcn4, a specialized protein that aids in the e...

When the chips are down -- soak them!

Good news for chips lovers everywhere new research in SCIs Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture shows that pre-soaking potatoes in water before frying can reduce levels of acrylamide. Acrylamide is a naturally occurring chemical that occurs when starch rich foods are cooked at high t...

Iowa State researcher studies how enzymes break down cellulose

AMES, Iowa Peter Reilly pointed to the framed journal covers decorating his office. Each of the six showed the swirling, twisting, complicated structure of an enzyme. Those bright and colorful illustrations are the work of his lab. And theyre part of Reillys work to understand how the structur...

Ant invaders eat the natives, then move down the food chain

The Argentine ant, Linepithema humile, is one of the most successful invasive species in the world, having colonized parts of five continents in addition to its native range in South America. A new study sheds light on the secrets of its success. The findings, from researchers at the University...

Obesity-related hormone is higher in children with Down syndrome

Children with Down syndrome are more likely than their unaffected siblings to have higher levels of a hormone associated with obesity, according to pediatric researchers. The hormone, leptin, may contribute to the known higher risk of obesity among children and adults with Down syndrome. A rese...

Toxic releases down from North American industry leaders, increasing from other facilities

The latest Taking Stock report from the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) reveals that a continued decline in releases of toxic chemicals to the environment15 percent for the United States and Canada from 1998 to 2004is being driven by a group of industrial facilities that are the lar...

Daisies lead scientists down path to new leukemia drug

A new, easily ingested form of a compound that has already shown it can attack the roots of leukemia in laboratory studies is moving into human clinical trials, according to a new article by University of Rochester investigators in the journal, Blood. The Rochester team has been leading the inv...

Paracetamol, one of most used analgesics, could slow down bone growth

In Medicine, paracetamol is used to soothe every kind of pain, from simple molar pain to pain produced by bone fractures. This medicine is one of the most used nowadays. However, research carried out at the Departamento de Enfermeria of the University of Granada showed that taking paracetamol ...

Super atoms turn the periodic table upside down

Researchers at Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) in The Netherlands have developed a technique for generating atom clusters made from silver and other metals. Surprisingly enough, these so-called super atoms (clusters of 13 silver atoms, for example) behave in the same way as individual at...

Batten down the hatches against HIV

A promising approach to gene therapy involves short DNA fragments (interfering RNA) that bind to specific genes and block their "translation" into the corresponding, disease-related protein. A stumbling block has been the efficient and targeted delivery of RNA into the cells. Researchers led by Hon...

Biodiesel won't drive down global warming

EU legislation to promote the uptake of biodiesel will not make any difference to global warming, and could potentially result in greater emissions of greenhouse gases than from conventional petroleum derived diesel. This is the conclusion of a new study reported today in Chemistry & Industry, ...

Hay fever can send work productivity down the drain

Employers can blame hay fever for the loss of millions of hours of work productivity this spring. A new study of nearly 600 people with hay fever symptoms, including sneezing, watery eyes and runny and itchy noses, found that workers missed an hour of work per week during peak hay fever season. ...

Drug treatment improves learning in mice with Down syndrome symptoms, Stanford/Packard study shows

A once-a-day, short-term treatment with a drug compound substantially improved learning and memory in mice with Down syndrome symptoms, say researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. What’s more, the gains lasted for months after the treatment ...

Tearing down the fungal cell wall

Scientists at the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute and Duke University Medical Center have pinpointed a fungal gene that appears to play an important role in the development and virulence of Alternaria brassicicola. A. brassicicola, a destructive fungal pathogen that causes black spot disease on ...

Drug dials down the energy within cells, UM researchers find

A drug effective at treating animal models of human autoimmune disorders and other diseases works by dialing down the activity of a key enzyme involved in energy production, University of Michigan researchers have found. "Many drugs block the function of enzymes, essentially turning them off," sa...

New tiger report release: Tiger habitat down from just a decade ago

The most comprehensive scientific study of tiger habitats ever done finds that the big cats reside in 40 percent less habitat than they were thought to a decade ago. The tigers now occupy only 7 percent of their historic range. This landmark study, commissioned by the National Fish & Wild...

Study finds drug may cut down involuntary movements

The medication tetrabenazine cut down involuntary movement in patients with Huntington's disease on average by about 25 percent, with many patients experiencing a greater improvement, according to a study in the February 14 issue of the journal Neurology. Overall, patients who received the medic...

USC researchers track down the stem cells that create feathers

The stem cells that produce bird feathers have been visualized and analyzed for the first time, signifying the initial step in a scientific journey that may ultimately shed light on human organ regeneration. The research, published in the December 15 issue of the journal Nature, was performed by ...

System Drastically Cuts Down Botulism Detection Time

A new study reveals critical molecular events in the origin of fat cells. The findings are central to understanding chronic diseases, such as obesity and diabetes, as fat cells produce hormones critical for metabolic control, the researchers said. The study finds that a hormonal cocktail routinel...

Gradient guides nerve growth down spinal cord

The same family of chemical signals that attracts developing sensory nerves up the spinal cord toward the brain serves to repel motor nerves, sending them in the opposite direction, down the cord and away from the brain, report researchers at the University of Chicago in the September 2005 issue of...

Hospitalizations because of chicken pox down dramatically since implementation of vaccine

Since the introduction of the varicella (chicken pox) vaccine in 1995, hospitalizations and doctor visits because of chicken pox have dropped dramatically, according to a study in the August 17 issue of JAMA. Varicella vaccine is recommended for routine immunization of children aged 12 to 18 mont...

Researchers track down cause of a disfiguring bone disorder

Scientists have tracked down the biological trigger that gives rise to Van Buchem disease, a hereditary, disfiguring bone disorder that can cause blindness and deafness. The findings provide insight into long-range gene regulation and could lead to new treatments for osteoporosis and other cripplin...

Venom doc tracks down snake bioweapons

Bryan Grieg Fry, Ph.D., a scientist from the University of Melbourne, Australia, has conducted the first comprehensive analysis of the origin and evolution of one of nature's most sophisticated bioweapons: snake venom. His results are reported in the March issue of the journal Genome Research. Ve...

Shutting down the HIV assembly line

After infecting a susceptible cell, the human immunodeficiency virus hijacks that cell's normal machinery to produce carbon copies of itself. New HIV particles roll off the cellular assembly lines, burst like bubbles out of the cell, and float off to invade other cellular factories. Vanderbilt Univ...

Growth in the sea comes down to a struggle for iron

Scientists know that injecting iron into some major regions of the oceans can stimulate the growth of diatoms and other phytoplankton, but something odd occurs as these tiny marine plants continue to grow. They begin to starve in the midst of plenty, acting as though iron, an essential nutrient, st...

Navigating in the ocean of molecules

... This release is available in German . Tracking down new active agents for cancer or malaria treatment could soon become easier ...tances whose biological activity is already known. "In this way, we tracked down new inhibitors for 2-lipoxygenase and the oestrogen receptor alpha," says S...
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