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Spinal cord neurons that control skilled limb movement identified

Spinal cord neurons that control skilled limb movement identified

Researchers have identified two types of neurons that enable the spinal cord to control skilled forelimb movement. The first is a group of excitatory interneurons that are needed to make accurate and precise movements; the second is a group of inhibitory interneurons necessary for achieving smooth movement of the limbs Continue reading

Cutting cancer to pieces: New research on bleomycin

Cutting cancer to pieces: New research on bleomycin

A variety of cancers are treated with the anti-tumor agent bleomycin, though its disease-fighting properties remain poorly understood. Continue reading

New type of protein action found to regulate development

New type of protein action found to regulate development

Johns Hopkins researchers report they have figured out how the aptly named protein Botch blocks the signaling protein called Notch, which helps regulate development. In a report on the discovery, to appear online April 24 in the journal Cell Reports , the scientists say they expect the work to lead to a better understanding of how a single protein, Notch, directs actions needed for the healthy development of organs as diverse as brains and kidneys Continue reading

New type of protein action found to regulate development

New type of protein action found to regulate development

Johns Hopkins researchers report they have figured out how the aptly named protein Botch blocks the signaling protein called Notch, which helps regulate development. In a report on the discovery, to appear online April 24 in the journal Cell Reports , the scientists say they expect the work to lead to a better understanding of how a single protein, Notch, directs actions needed for the healthy development of organs as diverse as brains and kidneys Continue reading

Finding safe drugs to treat neurodegenerative diseases

Finding safe drugs to treat neurodegenerative diseases

People diagnosed with Huntington’s disease, most in their mid-thirties and forties, face a devastating prognosis: complete mental, physical, and behavioral decline within two decades. “Mutant” protein clusters, long blamed for the progression of the genetic disease, have been the primary focus of therapies in development by pharmaceutical companies Continue reading

Enzymes that help fix cancer-causing DNA defects disovered

Enzymes that help fix cancer-causing DNA defects disovered

Purdue University researchers have identified an important enzyme pathway that helps prevent new cells from receiving too many or too few chromosomes, a condition that has been directly linked to cancer and other diseases. Mark Hall, associate professor of biochemistry, found that near the end of cell division, the enzyme Cdc14 activates Yen1, an enzyme that ensures any breaks in DNA are fully repaired before the parent cell distributes copies of the genome to daughter cells. Continue reading

Target for treating dengue fever discovered

Target for treating dengue fever discovered

Two recent papers by a University of Colorado School of Medicine researcher and colleagues may help scientists develop treatments or vaccines for Dengue fever, West Nile virus, Yellow fever, Japanese encephalitis and other disease-causing flaviviruses. Jeffrey S. Continue reading

Researchers examine metabolism in defective cells

Researchers examine metabolism in defective cells

UAlberta researchers are taking a closer look at how two metabolic pathways interact to increase the lifespan of cells with mitochondrial defects. Magnus Friis (PhD ’10) is the lead author of the study, which was published online on April 10 and will be published in the April 24 issue of Cell Reports. Mitochondria produce energy for cells through oxidative metabolism, but the process produces toxic byproducts that can accumulate and cause defects in the cell’s mitochondria Continue reading

Researchers examine metabolism in defective cells

Researchers examine metabolism in defective cells

UAlberta researchers are taking a closer look at how two metabolic pathways interact to increase the lifespan of cells with mitochondrial defects. Magnus Friis (PhD ’10) is the lead author of the study, which was published online on April 10 and will be published in the April 24 issue of Cell Reports Continue reading

Protein researchers closing in on the mystery of schizophrenia

Protein researchers closing in on the mystery of schizophrenia

Schizophrenia is a severe disease for which there is still no effective medical treatment. In an attempt to understand exactly what happens in the brain of schizophrenic people, researchers from the University of Southern Denmark have analysed proteins in the brains of rats that have been given hallucinogenic drugs. This may pave the way for new and better medicines. Continue reading