MIT engineers have uncovered the secret to the exceptional toughness of conch shells, and say the same principles can be used for body armor and helmets.
Melanoma is a particularly difficult cancer to treat once it has metastasized, spreading throughout the body. University of Illinois researchers are using chemistry to find the deadly, elusive malignant cells within a melanoma tumor that hold the potential to spread. Once found, the stemlike metastatic cells can be cultured and screened for their response to a variety of anti-cancer drugs, providing the patient with an individualized treatment plan based on their own cells.
Swiss scientists from the University of Geneva, Switzerland, and the University of Basel have created artificial viruses that can be used to target cancer. These designer viruses alert the immune system and cause it to send killer cells to help fight the tumor. The results, published in the journal Nature Communications, provide a basis for innovative cancer treatments.
Researchers have discovered a biochemical signaling process that causes densely packed cancer cells to break away from a tumor and spread the disease elsewhere in the body.
With C$2.7 million in government and private funding from Canada and the US, a 10-year community-led project on the north shore of Lake Erie has dramatically reduced roadkill on a thoroughfare running through a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve. A new paper estimates 89 percent fewer turtles and 28 percent fewer snakes now venture onto Ontario's Long Point Causeway, an important achievement in protecting at-risk species offering a model for other communities worldwide.
George Washington University researchers, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, find through looking at genetic data sets of presumed cancer-free women who carry BRCA 1/2 variants, the co-occurrence of a rare COMT genetic variant in some women. This research outlines a strategy for looking at large genetic data sets for clues as to why a genetic carrier may never develop the associated diseases.
Researchers from MIT's Tangible Media Group have concocted something akin to edible origami, in the form of flat sheets of gelatin and starch that, when submerged in water, instantly sprout into three-dimensional structures, including common pasta shapes such as macaroni and rotini.
UW synthetic biology researchers have demonstrated a new method for digital information processing in living cells, analogous to the logic gates used in electric circuits. The circuits are the largest ever published to date in eurkaryotic cells and a key step in harnessing the potential of cells as living computers that can respond to disease, efficiently produce biofuels or develop plant-based chemicals.
A research team from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory has performed the first-ever direct nanoscale examination of a living cell membrane. In doing so, it also resolved a long-standing debate by identifying tiny groupings of lipid molecules that are likely key to the cell's functioning.
Induced pluripotent stem cells (IPSCs) hold great promise in regenerative medicine, personalized medicine and drug discovery. However, while avoiding the ethical controversies associated with embryonic stem cells, they carry neoplastic risk owing to the use of the oncogenes c-Myc and Lin28. This has limited their utility in the biomedical arena.