A subset of the stem cells in hair follicles have the potential to regenerate the coating that insulates neurons in mice, reports Thomas Hornyak of the VA Maryland Health Care System and the University of Maryland School of Medicine and colleagues, in a new study published 24th April in PLOS Genetics. The study offers a new direction for finding therapeutic options for certain neurodegenerative diseases.
Ammonia -- a colorless gas essential for things like fertilizer -- can be made by a new process which is far cleaner, easier and cheaper than the current leading method. UTokyo researchers use readily available lab equipment, recyclable chemicals and a minimum of energy to produce ammonia. Their Samarium-Water Ammonia Production (SWAP) process promises to scale down ammonia production and improve access to ammonia fertilizer to farmers everywhere.
A more efficient and cost-effective way to detect lanthanides, the rare earth metals used in smartphones and other technologies, could be possible with a new protein-based sensor that changes its fluorescence when it binds to these metals.
University of Texas at Dallas scientists have demonstrated that the growth rate of the majority of lung cancer cells relates directly to the availability of a crucial oxygen-metabolizing molecule called heme. In a preclinical study recently published in Cancer Research, they showed that the expansion of lung tumors in mice slowed when access to heme was restricted. They also engineered new molecules aimed at starving the cancer cells of heme.
Childhood trauma is known to increase the risk of post-traumatic stress disorder in adulthood, especially for women, but the biological reasons for this correlation remain largely unknown. In a new study from the University of Missouri, researchers have proposed a solution to this mystery in the form of a model that could help psychiatrists better understand the far-reaching impacts of early trauma on women, while also clarifying why not all women with traumatic childhoods develop PTSD.
In a joint collaboration, researchers from Denmark and Switzerland have shown that bacteria produce a specific stress molecule, divide more slowly, and thus save energy when they are exposed to antibiotics. The new knowledge is expected to form the basis for development of a new type of antibiotics.
Radioactive antibodies that target cancer cells are used for medical diagnostics with PET imaging or for targeted radioimmunotherapy. Researchers from the University of Zurich have created a new method for radiolabelling antibodies using UV light. In less than 15 minutes, the proteins are ready-to-use for cancer imaging or therapy.
Cycad plant roots release signals into the soil that triggers the transformation of bacteria into its motile form, helping them move to the plant roots and establish a symbiotic partnership.
Japanese scientists at Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology and Yokohama National University have identified the molecular mechanism that gives the skin secretions of a species of frog effective antimicrobial properties. Unravelling the molecular mechanism that facilitates antimicrobial activity of these peptides can help us better understand how the defense system of the frog has evolved, and how this can be used to fight microbial infections of medical importance.
Researchers in Australia at Queensland University of Technology (QUT) and QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute have found that the dengue fever mosquito common to north and central Queensland poses the greatest danger of spreading the Zika virus in Australia. The researchers showed that not only was the dengue mosquito effective at transmitting Zika, the virus was also in the mosquitoes' reproductive organs. This finding suggests that Zika could persist in mosquito populations by females passing it to their offspring.