Evolution is a tinkerer, not an engineer. 'Evolution does not produce novelties from scratch. It works with what already exists,' wrote Nobel laureate François Jacob in 1977, and biologists continue to find this to be true.
CECAD-researchers find a molecular repair pathway for cellular energy production, publication in 'Nature Communications'
New artificial proteins have been created to function as molecular logic gates. Like their electronic counterparts in computers, these biochemical tools can be used to program the behavior of complex systems, such as gene regulation inside human T-cells. This new advance might improve the durability of future cell-based therapies.
Live, single-cell imaging shows cellular 'memory' of growth factor availability throughout the cell cycle (and not just snapshot of growth factor availability) influences cells' decision to replicate.
In the fight against neurodegenerative diseases such as frontotemporal dementia, Alzheimer's and Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, the tau protein is a major culprit. Found abundantly in our brain cells, tau is normally a team player -- it maintains structure and stability within neurons, and it helps with transport of nutrients from one part of the cell to another.
The bacteria that cause tuberculosis need iron to survive. Researchers at the University of Zurich have now solved the first detailed structure of the transport protein responsible for the iron supply. When the iron transport into the bacteria is inhibited, the pathogen can no longer grow. This opens novel ways to develop targeted tuberculosis drugs.
The research team comprised of Designated Associate Professor Tsuyoshi Hirota and Postdoctoral Fellows Simon Miller and Yoshiki Aikawa, of the Nagoya University Institute of Transformative Bio-Molecules, has succeeded in the discovery of novel compounds to lengthen the period of the circadian clock, and has shed light on their mechanisms of action.
Cells will ramp up gene expression in response to physical forces alone, a new study finds. Gene activation, the first step of protein production, starts less than one millisecond after a cell is stretched -- hundreds of times faster than chemical signals can travel, the researchers report.
The causes of 40% of all cases of certain medulloblastomas -- dangerous brain tumors affecting children -- are hereditary. These are the findings of a recent genetic analysis carried out by scientists from the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) and numerous colleagues around the world. A genetic defect that occurs in 15% of these children plays a key role by destabilizing the production of proteins. The researchers suspect that protein metabolism defects could be a previously underestimated cause of other types of cancer.
Genetic information from an 800.000-year-old human fossil has been retrieved for the first time. The results from the University of Copenhagen shed light on one of the branching points in the human family tree, reaching much further back in time than previously possible.