Tag Archives: Rodents/Lags

Biologists discover new strategy to treat central nervous system injury

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Neurobiologists at UC San Diego have discovered how signals that orchestrate the construction of the nervous system also influence recovery after traumatic injury. They also found that manipulating these signals can enhance the return of function. Most people who suffer traumatic injuries have incomplete lesions of neural circuits whose function can be partially restored from […]

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Multiple paternity may offer fewer advantages than previously thought

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Females can enhance the survival chances of their offspring by mating with multiple males. When it comes to immunological benefits, however, female promiscuity may not provide the young the advantages long suspected, as a research team from Vetmeduni Vienna confirmed. The researchers also provided the first evidence that females are much more susceptible to Salmonella […]

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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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Brain may show signs of aging earlier than old age

A new study published in Physiological Genomics suggests that the brain shows signs of aging earlier than old age. The study found that the microglia cells — the immune cells of the brain — in middle-aged mice already showed altered activity seen in microglia from older mice. Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and other aging-related neurodegenerative disorders are […]

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Brain induces preference for caloric food for energy storage

Different brain circuits are invoked by the pleasure we derive from eating sweet foods and the calories they supply. Given the choice between eating something caloric with an unpleasant taste and more palatable food with no calories, some vertebrates may choose the former, prioritizing energy to assure their survival. This finding comes from a study […]

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Using magnetic forces to control neurons, study finds brain is vital in glucose metabolism

A new tool to control the activity of neurons in mice avoids the downfalls of current methods by using magnetic forces to remotely control the flow of ions into specifically targeted cells. Applying this method to a group of neurons in the hypothalamus, researchers found that the brain plays a surprisingly vital role in maintaining […]

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* Flipping a light switch recovers memories lost to Alzheimer’s disease mice

Light stimulation of brain cells can recover memories in mice with Alzheimer’s disease-like memory loss, according to new research from the RIKEN-MIT Center for Neural Circuit Genetics. The rescue of memories, which changed both the structure of neurons as well as the behavior of mice, was achieved using optogenetics, a method for manipulating genetically tagged […]

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Scientists pinpoint brain circuit for risk preference in rats

Investigators at Stanford University have identified a small group of nerve cells in a specific brain region of rats whose signaling activity, or lack of it, explains the vast bulk of differences in risk-taking preferences among the animals. That activity not only predicts but effectively determines whether an animal decides to take a chance or […]

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Long-term stress erodes memory

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Sustained stress erodes memory, and the immune system plays a key role in the cognitive impairment, according to a new study from researchers at The Ohio State University. The work in mice could one day lead to treatment for repeated, long-term mental assault such as that sustained by bullying victims, soldiers and those who report […]

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Fat mice provide clue to obesity-colon cancer puzzle

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Obese mice — like obese humans — are at increased risk of colon cancer, and a study published today in Nature finally suggests why. Overweight mice fed a high-fat diet showed an increase in intestinal stem cells due to activation of a protein called PPAR-δ that regulates metabolism. If the results hold true in humans, […]

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Breast cancer: An improved animal model opens up new treatments

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EPFL scientists have developed an animal model for breast cancer that faithfully captures the disease. Tested on human breast tissue, this the most clinically realistic model of breast cancer to date. Breast cancer is the most common cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide, affecting one in eight women. There are different types of breast cancer, but […]

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Scientists map roots of premeditated, violent ‘intent’ in animal brain

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The bad intentions that often precede violence originate in a specific brain region, according to a study in mice led by researchers from NYU Langone Medical Center and published in Nature Neuroscience online March 7. The work is the first, say the study authors, to tie warning signs of premeditated violence — stalking, bullying, and […]

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Few studies focus on threatened mammalian species that are ‘ugly’

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Many Australian mammalian species of conservation significance have attracted little research effort, little recognition, and little funding, new research shows. The overlooked non-charismatic species such as fruit bats and tree rats may be most in need of scientific and management research effort. Investigators looked at research publications concerning 331 Australian terrestrial mammal species that broadly […]

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* Vision restored in rabbits following stem cell transplantation

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Scientists have demonstrated a method for generating several key types of eye tissue from human stem cells in a way that mirrors whole eye development. When transplanted to an animal model of corneal blindness, these tissues are shown to repair the front of the eye and restore vision, which scientists say could pave the way […]

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* Circuit for experience-informed decision-making identified in rats

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Memory and executive hubs work in lockstep during awake mental replay. Researchers have discovered how the rat brain ‘s memory and executive hubs talk with each other as decision-making is informed by past experiences. Also, the rat brain encodes memories for location during periods of stillness via a separate system than for memories of activity. […]

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Thousands of goats and rabbits vanish from major biotech lab

Santa Cruz Biotechnology has used goats to make antibodies for research. In July 2015, the major antibody provider Santa Cruz Biotechnology owned 2,471 rabbits and 3,202 goats. Now the animals have vanished, according to a recent federal inspection report from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). The company, which is headquartered in Dallas, Texas, is […]

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Link made between genetics, aging

Scientists at the University of Georgia have shown that a hormone instrumental in the aging process is under genetic control, introducing a new pathway by which genetics regulates aging and disease. Previous studies have found that blood levels of this hormone, growth differentiation factor 11, decrease over time. Restoration of GDF11 reverses cardiovascular aging in […]

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Proposal to ban imported monkeys catches scientists off guard

Australian bill provokes rush of protests ahead of parliamentary deadline. Nicholas Price works to understand the brain’s fundamental functions, with a view towards developing a bionic eye. The neuroscientist uses marmosets and macaques in his experiments at Monash University’s Biomedicine Discovery Institute in Melbourne. In late January, he was shocked to discover a bill before […]

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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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* Groundbreaking discovery made use skin cells to kill cancer

Skin cells turned cancer-killing stem cells hunt down, destroy deadly remnants inevitably left behind when a brain tumor is surgically removed In a first for medical science, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill pharmacy researchers turn skin cells into cancer-hunting stem cells that destroy brain tumors known as glioblastoma — a discovery that can […]

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Team suppresses oxidative stress, neuronal death associated with Alzheimer’s disease

The brain is an enormous network of communication, containing over 100 billion nerve cells, or neurons, with branches that connect at more than 100 trillion points. They are constantly sending signals through a vast neuron forest that forms memories, thoughts and feelings; these patterns of activity form the essence of each person. Alzheimer’s disease (AD) […]

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Brain boost: Research to improve memory through electricity?

In a breakthrough study that could improve how people learn and retain information, researchers at the Catholic University Medical School in Rome significantly boosted the memory and mental performance of laboratory mice through electrical stimulation. The study, sponsored by the Office of Naval Research (ONR) Global, involved the use of Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation, or […]

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Aggression causes new nerve cells to be generated in the brain

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A group of neurobiologists from Russia and the USA, including Dmitry Smagin, Tatyana Michurina, and Grigori Enikolopov from Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT), have proven experimentally that aggression has an influence on the production of new nerve cells in the brain. The scientists conducted a series of experiments on male mice and published […]

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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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Potential therapy for most aggressive type of lung cancer in preclinical models

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Lung cancer is one of the most prevalent types of cancer, with more than 20,000 new cases diagnosed each year in Spain. Lung adenocarcinomas carrying oncogenic KRAS, the engine driving these tumours in 30% of cases, constitute the most aggressive sub-type because, unlike other types of lung cancer, there are no targeted therapies beyond the […]

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Radiation causes blindness in wild animals in Chernobyl

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This year marks 30 years since the Chernobyl nuclear accident. Vast amounts of radioactive particles spread over large areas in Europe. These particles, mostly Cesium-137, cause a low but long-term exposure to ionizing radiation in animals and plants. This chronic exposure has been shown to decrease the abundances of many animal species both after the […]

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A mouse’s house may ruin experiments

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Mice are sensitive to minor changes in food, bedding and light exposure. It’s no secret that therapies that look promising in mice rarely work in people. But too often, experimental treatments that succeed in one mouse population do not even work in other mice, suggesting that many rodent studies may be flawed from the start. […]

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Impact of climate change on parasite infections depends on host immunity

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New research demonstrates how climate change and the immune reaction of the infected individual can affect the long-term and seasonal dynamics of parasite infections. The study, led by Penn State University scientists, assessed the infection dynamics of two species of soil-transmitted parasites in a population of rabbits in Scotland every month for 23 years. The […]

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An ancestor of the rabbit connects Europe and Asia

The species Amphilagus tomidai was recently discovered — an ancestor of the rabbit which lived in present-day Siberia during the Miocene, about 14 million years ago. The discovery of this mammal, belonging to a family which was thought to only exist in Europe, reveals that the two continents were connected ‑free of natural barriers‑ due […]

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