Ecological divergence of wild birds drives avian influenza spillover and global spread
- PLoS Pathogens
Paleontologists discovered the jaws of an Etruscan bear from the early Pleistocene period (2–1.5 million years ago). Previously the remains of Etruscan bears (which is the ancestor of brown and cave bears) as part of the fauna of large mammals of the early Pleistocene were found in Western Europe, Asia, and North Africa. And now it was found in the Crimea, in the Taurida cave.
- Historical Biology
Researchers at the Medical University of South Carolina used a novel method of microscopy to visualize changes in mitochondrial function in a preclinical model of alcohol-induced liver damage. Following both acute and chronic alcohol exposure, the mitochondria become damaged. This leads to destruction of the mitochondria through a process called mitophagy. Although it is beneficial in the short term, long-term activation of mitophagy leads to conditions such as inflammation, fibrosis and cancer.
- NIH/National Institutes of Health
People with neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) develop tumors on nerves throughout their bodies. Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have discovered that nerve cells with the mutation that causes NF1 are hyperexcitable and that suppressing this hyperactivity with the epilepsy drug lamotrigine stops tumor growth in mice.
- Nature Communications
- Georgio Foundation, Neurofibromatosis Therapeutic Acceleration Program, NIH/National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Defense, Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation for Childhood Cancer
Three studies, published in Science Immunology and led by investigators at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, and the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard, provide intriguing answers about how long COVID-19 immunity lasts and the nature of immune recall after infection, vaccination or both.
- Science Immunology
- Massachusetts Consortium for Pathogen Readiness, NIH/National Institutes of Health, the China Evergrande Group, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Food Allergy Science Initiative, MGH Executive Committee on Research, Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research
In studies with mouse and human tissue, as well as live mice, Johns Hopkins Medicine researchers report that a snag in the normal process of cleaning up broken DNA in brain cells may hasten the progression of Parkinson’s disease. Specifically, the researchers found that a protein dubbed “STING” responds to clean-up signals in brain cells damaged by Parkinson’s disease by creating a cycle of inflammation that may accelerate the disease’s progression.
- Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
- National Institute of General Medical Studies, National Institute on Aging, Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund