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Models in Biological News

Crop models help increase yield per unit of water used

MADISON, WI, May 4, 2009 -- Crop water use efficiency (WUE, or yield per unit of water used), also known as crop water productivity, can be improved through irrigation management and methods, including deficit irrigation (irrigating less than is required for maximum yields) and supplemental irriga...

CSHL team develops mouse models of leukemia that predict response to chemotherapy

Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y. Being able to accurately predict how a given cancer will respond to chemotherapy would spare patients with non-responsive tumors the burden of undergoing toxic and ultimately unhelpful treatment. Just as important, knowing which of a patient's cancer-causing genetic lesi...

Disease Models & Mechanisms -- selected for indexing in Medline

The Company of Biologists is pleased to announce that its latest journal, Disease Models & Mechanisms ( DMM ) (dmm.biologists.org) has been selected for inclusion in MEDLINE. MEDLINE (http://www.pubmed.gov) is the premier bibliographic database of the US National Library of Medicine (NLM). Part...

New models question old assumptions about how many molecules it takes to control cell division

Blacksburg, Va. -- A single cell whether a yeast cell or one of your cells is exquisitely sensitive to its surroundings. It receives input signals, processes the information, makes decisions, and issues commands for making the proper response. As with any control system, noise errors, slip-ups,...

Bacteria are models of efficiency

The bacterium Escherichia coli, one of the best-studied single-celled organisms around, is a master of industrial efficiency. This bacterium can be thought of as a factory with just one product: itself. It exists to make copies of itself, and its business plan is to make them at the lowest possi...

New movement models tested at the Smithsonian in Panama

Feeling threatened? Hungry? Looking for a mate? Move! Tracking and remote sensing data are making it easier to locate organisms and find out what they are up to. However, general theories of movement are lacking. In a special feature on Movement Ecology in the journal Proceedings of the National ...

Swamping bad cells with good in ALS animal models helps sustain breathing

In a disease like ALS - one that's always fatal and that has a long history of research-resistant biology - finding a proof of principle in animal models is significant. This week, Johns Hopkins researchers report that transplanting a new line of stem cell-like cells into rat models of the dise...

In computer models and observations, researchers see potential for significant 'red tide' season

The end of April usually brings the first signs of harmful algae in New England waters, and this year, researchers from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and North Carolina State University (NC State) are preparing for a potentially big bloom. A combination of abundant beds of al...

Arctic climate models playing key role in polar bear decision

MADISON - The pending federal decision about whether to protect the polar bear as a threatened species is as much about climate science as it is about climate change. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) is currently considering a proposal to list the polar bear as a threatened species unde...

Smithsonian researchers develop models to assess wetland health

Healthy wetlands perform vital ecological functions in a watershed. But assessing their condition and ability to perform those functions is not easy, especially as wetlands are disappearing fast due to human encroachment. In a special issue of the journal Wetlands, Smithsonian scientists repo...

REGiMMUNE presents enhanced efficacy data in preclinical transplantation models

Boston, MA June 1, 2009 REGiMMUNE Corporation today announced that its lead product candidate RGI-2001, in combination with a low-dose of Sirolimus, demonstrated enhanced efficacy in transplantation tolerance induction in models of skin transplantation and acute Graft-versus-Host disease (GvHD)....

Arctic ice retreating more quickly than computer models project

Arctic sea ice is melting at a significantly faster rate than projected by even the most advanced computer models, a new study concludes. The research, by scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and the University of Colorado's National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), sh...

Statin treatment improves spatial memory in mouse models of Alzheimer's

Treatment with Simvastatin, one of the statin drugs widely used for lowering cholesterol in humans, significantly improved spatial memory - how to navigate a water maze - in mice genetically bred to have an Alzheimer’s like disease. Although statin improved memory in both males and females, the res...

Stem cells found in adult skin can be transplanted and function in mouse models of disease

Researchers at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) and the University of Calgary have found that stem cells derived from adult skin can create neural cell types that can be transplanted into and function in mouse models of disease. This research is reported in the June 14, 2006 issue of The J...

What's nature worth? New computer models tell all

Breath in. The air is free. But we'd all agree it's not worthless. So, what's the price tag on benefits provided by nature? In 1997, the University of Vermont's Robert Costanza and his co-authors put the answer at $33 trillion per year in a now-famous paper in the journal Nature. In the decade f...

Proteins spur diabetic mice models to grow blood vessels, nerves

University of Utah researchers have taken a potentially powerful new therapy for treating diabetes, peripheral vascular disease, and other illnesses out of the test tube and into animals by demonstrating it restores nerve and blood vessel growth in mice. The research has particularly important im...

Stem cell transplants improve recovery in animal models for stroke, cerebral palsy

A single dose of adult donor stem cells given to animals that have neurological damage similar to that experienced by adults with a stroke or newborns with cerebral palsy can significantly enhance recovery from these types of injuries, researchers say. Using a commonly utilized animal model for s...

Animal models show that anabolic steroids flip the adolescent brain's switch for aggression

Anabolic steroids not only make teens more aggressive, but may keep them that way into young adulthood. The effect ultimately wears off but there may be other, lasting consequences for the developing brain. These findings, published in February's Behavioral Neuroscience, also showed that aggressi...

Engineers discover why toucan beaks are models of lightweight strength

As a boy growing up in Brazil 40 years ago, Marc A. Meyers marveled at the lightweight toughness of toucan beaks that he occasionally found on the forest floor. Now a materials scientist and professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at UCSD's Jacobs School of Engineering, Meyers said makers...

Setting the standard for computer models of life

Biologists are making a concerted effort to catalogue all the molecular components of living things, from the smallest molecules and ions to the genetic code. These 'parts lists' help them to build computer models that simulate living processes. By combining models of simple processes they hope ...

Blocking the nerve receptor EP1 in mouse models reduces brain damage caused by stroke

Researchers at Johns Hopkins have discovered how to block a molecular switch that triggers brain damage caused by the lack of oxygen during a stroke. The Hopkins study, conducted on mice, is believed to be the first to demonstrate that a protein on the surface of nerve cells called the EP1 receptor...

Sickle cell disease corrected in human models using stem cell-based gene therapy

In a study to be published in the January 2006 issue of Nature Biotechnology, researchers led by a team of scientists at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center have devised a novel strategy that uses stem cell-based gene therapy and RNA interference to genetically reverse sickle cell disease (SCD) ...

Computer models aid understanding of antibody-dependent enhancement in spread of dengue fever

Evolutionary trade-off exists between advantage and disadvantage Some viruses' ability to exploit the human body's own defenses to increase their replication may be both a blessing and curse, according to the findings of a study conducted by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of P...

Traditional models underestimate extinction rates

Last year, the World Conservation Union reported an unprecedented decline in biodiversity, with nearly 16,000 species facing extinction. The biggest threat to most species is loss of habitat. And as habitat loss and degradation proceed nearly unabated, the need to accurately predict the population ...

Understanding biases in epidemic models important when making public health predictions

Mathematical models have become invaluable decision-making tools for public health officials. As demonstrated during the United Kingdom's foot-and-mouth epidemic of 2001, models can be useful in two ways: they can reveal the underlying characteristics of an infection and they can allow the comparis...

A new way to share models of biological systems

Today sees the launch of BioModels, the world's first database of annotated biological models. BioModels is the result of a collaboration led by the European Bioinformatics Institute (UK) and the SBML Team, an international group that develops open-source standards to describe biological systems. O...

Molecular models advance the fight against malaria

Research from Dartmouth Medical School, demonstrating how malaria parasites form mutations that make them stubbornly resistant to drug therapy, may hold the key to a new treatments for a disease that afflicts more than half a billion people worldwide. The scientists developed disease models using...

Research Using Mouse Models Reveals A Novel Key Player In The Initiation Of Colon Cancer

Gastric and colorectal cancers account for more than 1 million deaths worldwide every year and several research groups have been working to identify the molecular events that result in the initiation and progression of these tumors. It has been established that interfering with the function of one ...

Study Models Impact Of Anthrax Vaccine

Rapidly distributing antibiotics to people exposed to anthrax spores during a bioterrorist attack, could by itself, prevent about 70 percent of anthrax infections from occurring, according to researchers from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. To increase the prevention rate to 90...

AGU journal highlights -- Aug. 6, 2009

...ke Study pinpoints sources of Earth's "hum" IPCC models might overestimate methane and nitrous oxide emiss...a sink of atmospheric carbon dioxide. Most current models predict that the strength of the Southern Ocean ca... not included. They compare coupled carbon-climate models with and without ozone depletion and find that inc...

Protein handlers should be effective treatment target for cancer and Alzheimer's

...shock factors in animals to better understand their role in these diseases. Drs. Mivechi and Moskofidis, a viral immunologist, have developed 20 mouse models missing different molecular chaperones or heat shock factors in the last decade to help explore the large family of molecular chaperones. For contrast...

University of Hawaii at Manoa researchers reveal ocean acidification at Station ALOHA

...ter pH. Since the beginning of the industrial age, CO 2 -driven acidification of the surface oceans has already caused a 0.1 unit lowering of pH, and models suggest that another 0.3 pH unit drop by the year 2050 is likely. Continued acidification of the sea may have a host of negative impacts on marine bi...

Joint research into an enzyme that causes genetic diseases

...diabetes treatments. The paper presents the enzyme's structure under physiological conditions for the first time, and reveals which of the previous models is the correct one. Mikel Valle, a researcher from CIC bioGUNE's Structural Biology Unit explains that This is the start of a highly ambitious stud...

Scary ancient spiders revealed in 3-D models, thanks to new imaging technique

...l College London have created detailed 3D computer models of two fossilised specimens of ancient creatures c...er. In the new study, the researchers' computer models reveal that Cryptomartus hindi 's first two legs ...into their backward-facing mouths. The computer models also revealed that Cryptomartus hindi 's mouth ap...

Neuropathic pain: The sea provides a new hope of relief

...Hsuan Jean MD, PhD and other colleagues, Dr Wen tested capnellene and a second very similar compound, in isolated microglial cells and in experimental models of the condition in rats. They found that the compounds significantly reduced pain-related activities in isolated microglia, and that these compoun...

New hope for fisheries

...ey call for MSY to be reinterpreted as an absolute upper limit rather than a target, in line with U.N. recommendations. The authors used ecosystem models to calculate a multi-species MSY (or MMSY) that adds up yield across all species, taking account of their interrelations. That analysis suggests that ...

August 2009 Geology and GSA Today media highlights

... entrained solids into sink holes. The study was based on scaled laboratory models of Hebes and on satellite images and spectra. The authors conclude that a s...gional- to global-scale climate dynamics and developing general circulation models that can adequately predict future climate scenarios cannot be overstated. ...

UC San Diego engineer provides insights to decades-old DNA squabble

...abnormal regulation of chromatin. The structure of chromatin has been a subject of many controversies during the last 30 years, with two different models being the focus of debate. The new findings by Arya and his collaborators suggest that the structure of chromatin is actually a combination of both o...

Global curbs on overfishing are beginning to work

... point out that some excess fishing effort is simply displaced to countries with weaker laws and enforcement capacity. Dr Fulton used the ecosystem models Atlantis and Ecosim to analyse ecosystem recovery in 31 fisheries worldwide, 10 in detail, including Australia's Southern and Eastern Scalefish and Sh...

K-State researcher, collaborators study virulence of pandemic H1N1 virus

...re very familiar with zoonotic diseases and we can contribute by working on models for animal and human diseases," Richt said. "This expertise is very critica...es, there are different clinical outcomes," he said. Establishing animal models for pandemic H1N1 is important, Richt said, because physicians have two typ...
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