Superbugs, also known as Gram-negative bacteria, are causing a global health crisis. To combat antibiotic-resistant infections, researchers are pursuing clever new ways to thwart the bacteria's tough defense system. Now, they have uncovered some of the previously unknown machinery that builds the bacterial outer membrane, information that could lead to new treatments for untreatable infections.
The creation of new library of mutants of the single-celled photosynthetic green alga, Chlamydomonas reinhardtii enabled a Carnegie- and Princeton University-led team of plant scientists to identify more than 300 genes that are potentially required for photosynthesis. Photosynthesis is the process by which plants, algae, and some bacteria convert energy from sunlight into carbohydrates -- filling our planet's atmosphere with oxygen as a byproduct.
Chemistry researchers have patented a method for making anti-leukemia compounds that until now have only been available via an Asian tree that produces them.
Magnetic stir bars are regarded as reusable consumables, and in many labs they last for months. This study shows that in a regular catalysis lab almost all magnetic stir bars become permanently contaminated with metal nanoparticles. Regular cleaning procedures do not remove such contamination completely. Indeed, subsequent release of metal traces in the next reactions is unacceptable even in small quantitates. The results of this study are published in ACS Catalysis.
Researchers have engineered nanoscale protein micelles capable of both delivering chemotherapeutic drugs and of being tracked by MRI. The innovation allows researchers to administer therapy while noninvasively monitoring the therapeutic progress and drastically reducing the need for surgical intervention. They biosynthesized a protein block copolymer containing amino acid building blocks with fluorinated thermoresponsive assembled protein (F-TRAP), which assembles into a nanoscale micelle with the noteworthy abilities.
A study by the University of Liverpool reveals new insights into how cells respond to oxygen deprivation. Published in the prestigious journal Science, the researchers found that chromatin, the complex of DNA and proteins where all genes reside, quickly changes in response to low oxygen.
Scientists at the University of Surrey and University College London have revealed an innovative in vitro method that can help to develop easy to swallow medicine for children and older people.
CRISPR/Cas enables the targeted deactivation of genes by cutting DNA at pre-determined sites. This is accomplished by providing the Cas enzyme with a genetic zip code. Using an entire library of zip codes, it is then possible to simultaneously probe multiple sites within the genome, for example to determine which genes are essential for cancer cell survival. This could revolutionize drug discovery.
Direct observations of the structure and catalytic mechanism of a prototypical kinase enzyme -- protein kinase A or PKA -- will provide researchers and drug developers with significantly enhanced abilities to understand and treat fatal diseases and neurological disorders such as cancer, diabetes, and cystic fibrosis. The discovery was made by an international team of researchers using macromolecular neutron crystallography at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Institut Laue-Langevin in Grenoble, France.
Two proteins work hand in hand to ensure that the tumor cells of neuroblastoma can grow at full speed. In Nature, a Würzburg research team shows how the proteins can do this.