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tune in Biological News

How plants fine tune their natural chemical defenses

LA JOLLA, CA Even closely related plants produce their own natural chemical cocktails, each set uniquely adapted to the individual plant's specific habitat. Comparing anti-fungals produced by tobacco and henbane, researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies discovered that only a few ...

Ultrasonic frogs can tune their ears to different frequencies

Researchers have discovered that a frog that lives near noisy springs in central China can tune its ears to different sound frequencies, much like the tuner on a radio can shift from one frequency to another. It is the only known example of an animal that can actively select what frequencies it he...

Archerfish tune their shots to universal properties of prey adhesion

Archerfish exhibit the remarkable ability to hunt for insects and other small terrestrial animals by firing precisely aimed streams of water that knock prey onto the water's surface. These water shots were once thought to be all-or-none in quality, but researchers have now discovered new levels of ...

Scientists track impact of DNA damage in the developing brain

...A damage and are a likely source of neurological problems in humans. The cerebellum coordinates movement and balance. The cerebellar interneurons fine tune motor control. "These data will be important for understanding the role the DNA damage response plays in preventing neurological disease," the inve...

New windows opened on cell-to-cell interactions

...'ve got the first system in which like-charge attraction can be controlled, simply by the incorporation of molecules from biological membranes. We can tune attraction or repulsion over the entire spectrum simply by changing the composition of the membrane. This is useful both for technological application...

Researchers see evidence of memory in the songbird brain

...ene expression in its brain in unexpected ways, researchers report. The sequential switching on and off of thousands of genes after a bird hears a new tune offers a new picture of memory in the songbird brain. The finding, detailed this month in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences , wa...

Caltech researchers explore how cells reconcile mixed messages in decisions about growth

...words, Asthagiri explains, the team's research showed that it's possible to tune the systemto make cells more or less able to respond to a certain level of ...w division throughout the cluster. In other words, says Asthagiri, "You can tune the system; you can make the periphery grow more quickly relative to the re...

Saved by junk DNA

...al DNA packaging, which in turn alters gene activity. In this way, unstable junk DNA allows fast shifts in gene activity, which may allow organisms to tune the activity of genes to match changing environments -a vital principle for survival in the endless evolutionary race. Evolution in test tubes T...

New version of Google Earth features California's marine protected areas

... (Santa Barbara, Calif.) You don't have to get wet, or seasick, to find out what is going on in Marine Protected Areas worldwide. Just tune in through your computer. This morning at 10 a.m. Pacific Time, Ocean in Google Earth available to computers everywhere was launched at the Calif...

Rewrite the textbooks: Transcription is bidirectional

...he insights gained extend to transcription in humans. A better understanding of transcription mechanisms could find application in new technologies to tune gene regulation in the future. ...

Mosquitoes create harmonic love song before mating, study finds

...to is the sound of love, scientists have known for some time. But a new Cornell study reports that males and females flap their wings and change their tune to create a harmonic duet just before mating. Cornell entomologists have discovered that male and female mosquitoes (Aedes aegypti), which can spread...

'Strained' quantum dots show new optical properties

...D, a professor in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory University. "We have discovered another way to tune quantum dots' properties: by modulating lattice strain." In addition to their expected utility in biomedical imaging, the new type of quantum dots ...

Wistar scientists find key to keeping killer T cells in prime shape for fighting infection, cancer

...matically enhance antiviral or antitumor T cell responses, but also to fine tune which response you want to enhance in order to reverse T cell exhaustion an...nderstand the pathways the receptors control, and then to learn how to fine tune reversal of exhaustion by targeting pathways that selectively control the d...

Bare bones of crystal growth: Biomolecules enhance metal contents in calcite

...on impurities is often necessary to give specific properties such as strength or electrical conductivity. By using biomolecules, it may be possible to tune impurities to desired levels, Dove said. "Also, this basic research suggests new ways of looking at biochemical origins of pathological skeletal mi...

European researchers harness unique properties of boron to develop new drugs and diagnostics

...makes it possible to design molecules with specific charge distributions by varying their internal structure, and this in turn brings the potential to tune how each part of the structure relates to water molecules, and biomolecules present in living organisms if a component is hydrophobic, meaning it re...

Astrocytes and synaptic plasticity

... By mopping up excess neurotrophic factor from neuronal synapses, astrocytes may finely tune synaptic transmission to affect processes such as learning and memory, say Bergami et al. The major cellular events of learning and memory are long...

Biologists identify genes controlling rhythmic plant growth

...osing the gate to put the brakes on plant growth until the next 24-hour cycle. "This temporal integration of hormone pathways allows plants to fine tune phytohormone responses for seasonal and shade-appropriate growth regulation," they write in their paper. "Many different plant hormone genes, includi...

TGen investigators devise faster, cheaper way of analyzing the human genome

...f individuals.'' John Pearson, the head of TGen's Bioinformatics Research Unit, said the new method would allow scientists worldwide to more easily tune their sequencing experiments, and conduct their experiments with greater speed. "In many cases, rather than sequencing the whole genome for 10 peop...

Biochemists manipulate fruit flavor enzymes

...berry-flavored banana? Biochemists at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston say the day may be coming when scientists will be able to fine tune enzymes responsible for flavors in fruits and vegetables. In addition, it could lead to environmentally-friendly pest control. In the advance onlin...

Story tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, July 2008

...the concept of complexity to the study of materials at the nanoscale, scientists hope to be able to see the interrelations between base components and tune the materials to create previously unseen properties. "If we are able to unravel exactly how everything at the atomic level interacts we should be abl...

Certain anticancer agents could be harmful to patients with heart disease

...ehog signaling pathway is a mechanism to regulate the heart's vasculature by influencing growth factors that promote blood vessel growth. The body can tune the hedgehog pathway to modulate its signal and increase and decrease blood vessels on demand, providing a mechanism to ensure a constant supply of ox...

MIT creates new material for fuel cells

...ectricity. Using a relatively new technique known as layer-by-layer assembly, the MIT researchers created an alternative to Nafion. We were able to tune the structure of [our] film a few nanometers at a time, Hammond said, getting around some of the problems associated with other approaches. The result...

Berkeley researchers identify photosynthetic dimmer switch

...hin that produces radical cations. Furthermore, it appears that this conformational change is reversible, which opens the possibility of being able to tune the electronic coupling between the chlorophylls and thereby modulate the energy of the chlorophylls-zeaxanthin charge-transfer state. In other words,...

Researchers bridge the 'terahertz gap' with new tunable metamaterial

...s case metallic split-ring resonators that interact with light in order to tune metamaterials beyond their fixed point on the electromagnetic spectrum, an ...d a single layer of metamaterial and semiconductor that allowed the team to tune terahertz resonance across a range of frequencies in the far-infrared spect...

FEBS Letters Structured Digital Abstracts experiment

...ctured Digital Abstracts and explains the experiment and relevance in full detail. The aim of the experiment is threefold: To develop and fine tune simple tools to facilitate data entries and the authors selection of terms from controlled vocabularies. To propose a text layout for a structured ...

U-M 'ballast-free ship' could cut costs while blocking aquatic invaders

...ydrodynamics Laboratory's towing tank, the oldest facility of its kind that is owned by a U.S. educational institution. In addition to helping fine tune the design, results from the latest round of tank tests and computer simulations suggest the ballast-free ship will deliver an unforeseen benefit. The...

Chemical engineers discover new way to control particle motion

...ids because it lowers the system's free energy, he said. The Truskett team determined that confining a fluid to small length scales allowed them to tune the thermodynamically-favored state to coincide with one that has layering and fast particle dynamics. ...

Researchers visualize complex pigment mixtures in living cells

... the photosynthesis process of collecting sunlight and turning it into chemical energy. Such information could be valuable in helping researchers fine tune the bacteria for specific purposes, said Wim Vermaas, a professor in ASUs School of Life Sciences and lead author of the report, In vivo hyperspectral...

Great Ape Trust signs agreement with Universitas Nasional in Jakarta

...vided a rich source of protein, fat and calories and could have been consumed over a period of hours, thus saving energy. The behavior is perfectly in tune with the origins of meat-eating in humans, Shumaker said, and also is perfectly consistent with other innovative behaviors of orangutans. Scientists...

The construction of heart modelling leads path to new therapies

...xperimental data from animals than humans. Such animal data can help calibrate some aspects of the models, but only data from human hearts can fine tune them to the point at which they can actually make useful predictions and test therapies. Fortunately such data is now becoming available as a result o...

Technique controls nanoparticle size, makes large numbers

...ctthen the properties are very different. They can have certain unique properties, said Biswas. By changing the size and the crystal structure you can tune the functionality. Fabulous Flames To make these nanoparticles and alter their size, Biswas uses a flame aerosol reactor (FLAR). The flame pr...

Cilia: small organelles, big decisions

... Johns Hopkins researchers say they have figured out how human and all animal cells tune in to a key signal, one that literally transmits the instructions that shape their final bodies. It turns out the cells assemble their own little radi...

Researchers set new record for brightness of quantum dots

...ssor of electrical and computer engineering and corresponding author of a paper published in the August issue of the journal Nature Nanotechnology. We tune them to the specific wavelength of a laser used to stimulate the quantum dots, which couples the energy more efficiently and increases the brightness....

New insight into the mechanisms of voltage sensing and transduction in biological processes

... critical for understanding general mechanisms of voltage sensing and many disorders coupled with altered membrane excitabilities. The VSPs ability to tune phosphoinositide phosphatase activity by voltage will also serve as an important molecular tool to understand mechanisms of tumor suppressor phosphata...

Rhythmic breathing adapts to external beat through 'brain calculus'

...animal behavior. For instance, roses smell heady and intense at first, but minutes later they lose their affect due to habituation. The body learns to tune it out if its not going to kill you, says Poon. In mammals, nonassociative learning also involves a secondary form of habituation, called desensit...

Art and music for the birds

...tors of the interactive exhibit receive a schedule of songs emitting from each station, which will repeat approximately five songs each. Birds can tune in to classics like Vivaldi’s “Concert in D Major,” Miles Davis’s “Blue and Green,” and Led Zepplin’s “Kasmir.” They may also hear songs about the win...

Math that powers spam filters used to understand how brain learns to move our muscles

... show similar “probable” learning patterns and use them to develop and fine tune new movements, whether babies trying to walk or stroke patients re-connecti...probably” attached to mail you don’t want and “learning” as they go to fine tune what they exclude from your in-box. The computer model, Shadmehr says...

A 'traffic light' for neurons means 'go' for improving brain research

...se patterns could compel neurons to emit messages that correspond to real neural instructions. In the future, this could allow researchers to test and tune sophisticated neuron behaviors. Much farther down the road, Deisseroth speculates, the ability to artificially stimulate neural signals, such as movem...

Nanoparticles can track cells deep within living organisms

...r Nanotechnology Excellence, says this technology offers significant advantages over other cell-labeling technologies under development. "We can tune an MRI scanner to the specific frequency of the fluorine compound in the nanoparticles, and only the nanoparticle-containing cells will be visible in ...

Faster, low cost sequencing technologies needed to drive era of personalized medicine

...etic makeup. Any patient wanting a complete picture of their inherited DNA, or genome, would drop their jaw at the sight of the bill -- to the current tune of $10 million or more charged for every human or mammalian-sized genome sequenced. Now, with a grant award from the National Human Genome Research ...
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