The movement of material in and out a cell, endocytosis, depends on proteins that cut the membrane to form vesicles encapsulating the transported materials. Researchers at the Nara Institute of Science and Technology (NAIST) discover the role of the protein ANKHD1 and its ankyrin repeat domains. The finding suggests the mechanism resembles other vesiculation proteins and gives clarity to an essential and ubiquitous function in cells.
A molecule-trapping material that normally degrades in water remains stable after two years of humidity exposure when treated with a common skin bleach.
Gut diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) are increasingly prevalent worldwide, especially in industrialized countries. In 2015 alone, 250,000 people in the UK were diagnosed with IBD, and 3 million in the United States. Symptoms can include pain and swelling of the stomach, bloody diarrhea, weight loss and extreme tiredness.
In new research from Berkeley Lab and our collaborators, scientists discovered how a protein produced by bullfrogs inhibits the deadly neurotoxin involved in red tide events, glimpsed how atoms move in four dimensions, and identified a bacterial gene that could be engineered into biofuel-producing microbes to greatly boost process efficiency.
A group of scientists from Japan -- led by Professor Takashi Kamakura of Tokyo University of Science -- has demonstrated, for the first time, the molecular and cellular basis of the 'adverse' effects of the antibiotic chloramphenicol on eukaryotic cells.
Parts of the genomes of two ~120,000-year-old Neandertals from Germany and Belgium have been sequenced at the MPI for Evolutionary Anthropology. The analyses showed that the last Neandertals, who lived around 40,000 years ago, trace at least part of their ancestry back to these European Neandertals that lived around 80,000 years earlier. The 120,000-year-old Neandertal from Germany, however, carried some ancestry that may originate from an isolated Neandertal population or from relatives of modern humans.
Parkinson's disease can begin in the gut and spread to the brain via the vagus nerve, researchers report June 26 in the journal Neuron. This pathway was observed in a new mouse model, which recapitulates both motor and non-motor deficits as well as early-stage and late-stage features associated with Parkinson's disease.
Ion channels are pores in the membrane of cells or cell organelles that allow ions to be transported across the membrane. Biochemists have now succeeded in imaging an important regulatory region of the human TRPML2 calcium ion channel at high resolution, an area of the channel shaped like a large ring on one side of the membrane. This ring acts like a doorman, deciding whether ions can move through the channel.
Prof. LIU Bo and colleagues at the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC) have developed a chiral separation membrane capable of capturing left-handed chiral molecules and releasing right-handed counterpart using two-dimensional layered materials. The chiral membrane, showing a separation efficiency up to 89% towards limonene racemate, is expected to be put into industrial production.
The function of protein machines in biological cells is so complex that even supercomputers cannot predict their cycles at atomic detail. But, as demonstrated in this review article, many aspects of their operation at mesoscales can be already revealed by exploring simple mechanical models, amenable for simulations on common computers. The authors also show how artificial protein-like structures with machine properties can be designed.