Tag Archives: Cell Biology

Test run finds no cancer risk from stem cell therapy

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Therapeutic stem cells can be made without introducing genetic changes that could later lead to cancer, a study in PLOS Genetics has found. The discovery, made by researchers at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, is a boost for scientists working on ways to make regenerative medicines from induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells; a type of […]

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Why do cells rush to heal a wound? Mysteries of wound healing unlocked

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Researchers at the University of Arizona have discovered what causes and regulates collective cell migration, one of the most universal but least understood biological processes in all living organisms. The findings, published in the March 13, 2015, edition of Nature Communications, shed light on the mechanisms of cell migration, particularly in the wound-healing process. The […]

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Radiation improves survival in older patients with soft tissue sarcomas

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UC Davis researchers have shown that radiation therapy following surgery benefits older patients more than their younger counterparts, a surprising finding that could change the way some patients are treated for soft tissue sarcomas (STS). The study, published in the journal Anticancer Research, used data from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) program to […]

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The up- and downside of caloric restriction for aging and health

It’s already well known that a diet may have a life-extending effect. Researchers from Leibniz Institute on Aging — Fritz Lipmann Institute (FLI) in Jena, Germany, now showed that besides improving the functionality of stem cells in mice, a caloric restriction also leads to a fatale weakening of their immune system — counteracting the life-lengthening […]

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Antibiotic resistance: it’s a social thing

Trace concentrations of antibiotic, such as those found in sewage outfalls, are enough to enable bacteria to keep antibiotic resistance, new research from the University of York has found. The concentrations are much lower than previously anticipated, and help to explain why antibiotic resistance is so persistent in the environment. Antibiotic resistance can work in […]

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New compounds discovered as candidates for new antimicrobial drugs against Listeria infection

Scientists at Umeå Centre for Microbial Research (UCMR) have discovered chemical compounds which are able to attenuate the virulence of the bacterial human pathogen Listeria monocytogenes. Their findings are published today in the high impact journal Cell Chemical Biology. The dramatic increase of antibiotic resistance makes new antimicrobial strategies necessary. The researchers at Umeå University […]

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Stem cells used to identify cellular processes related to glaucoma

Using stem cells derived from human skin cells, researchers led by Jason Meyer, assistant professor of biology, along with graduate student Sarah Ohlemacher of the School of Science at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, have successfully demonstrated the ability to turn stem cells into retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), the neurons that conduct visual information from the […]

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Likely biological link found between Zika virus, microcephaly

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Working with lab-grown human stem cells, a team of researchers suspect they have discovered how the Zika virus probably causes microcephaly in fetuses. The virus selectively infects cells that form the brain’s cortex, or outer layer, making them more likely to die and less likely to divide normally and make new brain cells. The researchers […]

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Cancer cells eat their neighbors’ ‘words’

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Cancer cells are well-known as voracious energy consumers, but even veteran cancer-metabolism researcher Deepak Nagrath was surprised by their latest exploit: Experiments in his lab at Rice University show that some cancer cells get 30-60 percent of their fuel from eating their neighbors’ “words.” “Our original hypothesis was that cancer cells were modifying their metabolism […]

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* Popular stem cell techniques deemed safe; unlikely to pass on cancer-causing mutations

A new study led by scientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) and the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI) shows that the act of creating pluripotent stem cells for clinical use is unlikely to pass on cancer-causing mutations to patients. The research, published February 19, 2016 in the journal Nature Communications, is an important step […]

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Stem cell technique makes sperm in a dish

Scientists in China have finally succeeded in creating functioning sperm from mice in the laboratory. To accomplish this feat, the researchers coaxed mouse embryonic stem cells to turn into functional sperm-like cells, which were then injected into egg cells to produce fertile mouse offspring. The work, reported February 25 in Cell Stem Cell, provides a […]

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Fat cells outlive skinny ones

Cells with higher fat content outlive lean cells, shows a new study. This study has implications for larger organisms, such as humans, as the results support the phenomenon known as the “obesity paradox.” This concept shows that overweight people have the lowest all-cause mortality rates while fit people, oddly enough, have mortality rates comparable to […]

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* Electron microscopy captures snapshot of structure coronaviruses use to enter cells

High-resolution cryo-electron microscopy and supercomputing have now made it possible to analyze in detail the infection mechanisms of coronaviruses. These viruses are notorious for attacking the respiratory tract of humans and animals. A research team that included scientists from the University of Washington (UW), the Pasteur Institute and the University of Utrecht has obtained an […]

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Destroying worn-out cells makes mice live longer

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Eliminating worn-out cells extends the healthy lives of lab mice — an indication that treatments aimed at killing off these cells, or blocking their effects, might also help to combat age-related diseases in humans. As animals age, cells that are no longer able to divide — called senescent cells — accrue all over their bodies, […]

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Common cell transformed to master heart cell

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By genetically reprogramming the most common type of cell in mammalian connective tissue, researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have generated master heart cells — primitive progenitors that form the developing heart. Writing online Feb. 11 in the journal Cell Stem Cell, a team led by cardiologist Timothy J. Kamp reports transforming mouse fibroblasts, cells […]

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First serotonin neurons made from human stem cells

Su-Chun Zhang, a pioneer in developing neurons from stem cells at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, has created a specialized nerve cell that makes serotonin, a signaling chemical with a broad role in the brain. Serotonin affects emotions, sleep, anxiety, depression, appetite, pulse and breathing. It also plays a role in serious psychiatric conditions like schizophrenia, […]

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Innovation sheds light on how genetic information travels from cell’s nucleus

Discovery science led by the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry is opening a window on cell biology rarely seen before. New research featured in the Journal of Cell Biology has revealed a real-time look at how genetic information travels within a living cell. The discovery, observed through a specially designed high-powered microscope, […]

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* New technology enables us to ‘chart’ all cells in brain

The human brain is made up of hundreds of millions of cells. Many of these cells and their functions are as yet unknown. This is about to change with a new technology that is being used for the first time at the Center for Brain Research at MedUni Vienna and Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm. By […]

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* Reproduction, stem cell researchers set up a rescue plan for Northern White Rhino

International scientists set up a rescue plan for the last three northern white rhinos (Ceratotherium simum cottoni) on Earth. The goal is to use the remaining three rhinos and tissue samples from already dead individuals to multiply them into a viable self-sustaining population. For this purpose, scientists apply recent findings in reproduction and stem cell […]

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Novel RNA delivery system may treat incurable blood cancers

With a median survival rate of just five to seven years, Mantle Cell Lymphoma (MCL) is considered the most aggressive known blood cancer — and available therapies are scarce. Three thousand Americans are diagnosed with MCL every year, and despite progress in personalized therapies to treat metastases elsewhere in the body, systemic therapeutic drug delivery […]

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Insulin-producing pancreatic cells created from human skin cells

Scientists at the Gladstone Institutes and the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) have successfully converted human skin cells into fully-functional pancreatic cells. The new cells produced insulin in response to changes in glucose levels, and, when transplanted into mice, the cells protected the animals from developing diabetes in a mouse model of the disease. […]

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Link between a mitochondrial defect and heart disease

Diet rich in fatty acids can prevent heart disease and increase survival of the mice with this condition, study shows. A defect in a vital mitochondrial process in heart cells causes a type of dilated cardiomyopathy, a heart condition that in humans leads in most cases to heart disease and premature death. The study, published […]

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* Neuroscientists reveal how the brain can enhance connections

When the brain forms memories or learns a new task, it encodes the new information by tuning connections between neurons. MIT neuroscientists have discovered a novel mechanism that contributes to the strengthening of these connections, also called synapses. At each synapse, a presynaptic neuron sends chemical signals to one or more postsynaptic receiving cells. In […]

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Can stem cell technology be harnessed to generate biological pacemakers?

Although today’s pacemakers are lifesaving electronic devices, they are limited by their artificial nature. For example, their parts can fail or they can become infected. In addition, the devices require regular maintenance, must be replaced periodically, and can only approximate the natural regulation of a heartbeat. A Review article published on November 20 in Trends […]

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Functional human liver cells grown in the lab

In new research appearing in the journal Nature Biotechnology, an international research team led by The Hebrew University of Jerusalem describes a new technique for growing human hepatocytes in the laboratory. This groundbreaking development could help advance a variety of liver-related research and applications, from studying drug toxicity to creating bio-artificial liver support for patients […]

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How glucose regulation enables malignant tumor growth

A new study led by researchers at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center. The researchers identified a critical molecule in that pathway that, if blocked, might cripple lipid production by cancer cells and slow tumor growth. This approach would be a new strategy for treating a lethal type of brain cancer called glioblastoma multiforme, […]

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* Nerve cells warn brain of damage to inner ear

Some nerve cells in the inner ear can signal tissue damage in a way similar to pain-sensing nerve cells in the body, according to new research from Johns Hopkins. If the finding, discovered in rats, is confirmed in humans, it may lead to new insights into hyperacusis, an increased sensitivity to loud noises that can […]

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Engineered bat virus stirs debate over risky research

An experiment that created a hybrid version of a bat coronavirus — one related to the virus that causes SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) — has triggered renewed debate over whether engineering lab variants of viruses with possible pandemic potential is worth the risks. In an article published in Nature Medicine1 on 9 November, scientists […]

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Building immune system memory

Mechanism identified for enhancing immunological memory in helper T cells. Molecular mechanisms that control an immune cell’s ability to remember have been identified by scientists. They found that in helper T (CD4+) cells, the proteins Oct1 and OCA-B work together to put immune response genes on standby so that they are easily activated when the […]

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Researchers solve longtime puzzle about how we learn

More than a century ago, Pavlov figured out that dogs fed after hearing a bell eventually began to salivate when they heard the ring. A Johns Hopkins University-led research team has now figured out a key aspect of why. In the current issue of the journal Neuron, neuroscientist Alfredo Kirkwood settles a long-running debate in […]

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