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Microgravity research helping to understand the fungi within

Microgravity research helping to understand the fungi within

You may not recognize it by name, but if you have ever had a child with a diaper rash, that child was likely a host to Candida albicans ( C. albicans ) Continue reading

Cancer cells may respond to mechanical force

Cancer cells may respond to mechanical force

The push and pull of physical force can cause profound changes in the behavior of a cell. Two studies from researchers working at the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center reveal how cells respond to mechanical manipulation, a key factor in addressing the underlying causes of cancer and other diseases. Continue reading

Disruption of VISTA plays an important role in regulating immune response

Disruption of VISTA plays an important role in regulating immune response

Date: April 7, 2014 Source: Norris Cotton Cancer CenterDartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center Summary: The body’s immune system response was enhanced in a study when researchers disrupted VISTA, a protein that prevents the immune system from overreacting. Understanding how checkpoint regulators like VISTA function is important to cancer researchers, who hope to use the immune system to attack tumors. Researchers at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth have found that the body’s immune system response was enhanced when they disrupted VISTA, a protein that prevents the immune system from overreacting Continue reading

Disruption of VISTA plays an important role in regulating immune response

Disruption of VISTA plays an important role in regulating immune response

Date: April 7, 2014 Source: Norris Cotton Cancer CenterDartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center Summary: The body’s immune system response was enhanced in a study when researchers disrupted VISTA, a protein that prevents the immune system from overreacting. Understanding how checkpoint regulators like VISTA function is important to cancer researchers, who hope to use the immune system to attack tumors. Continue reading

Population of neutrophils in body found by researchers

Population of neutrophils in body found by researchers

Case Western Reserve University researchers have discovered a novel population of neutrophils, which are the body’s infection control workhorses. These cells have an enhanced microbial killing ability and are thereby better able to control infection. Continue reading

Chronic sleep disturbance could trigger onset of Alzheimer’s

Chronic sleep disturbance could trigger onset of Alzheimer’s

People who experience chronic sleep disturbance — either through their work, insomnia or other reasons — could face an earlier onset of dementia and Alzheimer’s, according to a new pre-clinical study by researchers at Temple University. “The big biological question that we tried to address in this study is whether sleep disturbance is a risk factor to develop Alzheimer’s or is it something that manifests with the disease,” said Domenico Praticò, professor of pharmacology and microbiology/immunology in Temple’s School of Medicine, who led the study. Initially, the researchers looked at longitudinal studies which indicated that people who reported chronic sleep disturbances often developed Alzheimer’s disease Continue reading

Pathways that direct immune system to turn ‘on’ or ‘off’ found

Pathways that direct immune system to turn ‘on’ or ‘off’ found

A key discovery explaining how components of the immune system determine whether to activate or to suppress the immune system, made by Kelvin Lee, MD, Professor of Oncology and Co-Leader of the Tumor Immunology and Immunotherapy Program at Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI), and colleagues led to published findings being selected as the “Paper of the Week” by the Journal of Biological Chemistry (JBC). Continue reading

Air pollution primes children for asthma-related cockroach allergy

Air pollution primes children for asthma-related cockroach allergy

Feb. 6, 2013 — An allergic reaction to cockroaches is a major contributor to asthma in urban children, but new research suggests that the insects are just one part of a more complex story. Very early exposure to certain components of air pollution can increase the risk of developing a cockroach allergy by age 7 and children with a common mutation in a gene called GSTM may be especially vulnerable Continue reading

Genetically modified tobacco plants produce antibodies to treat rabies

Genetically modified tobacco plants produce antibodies to treat rabies

Feb. 1, 2013 — Smoking tobacco might be bad for your health, but a genetically altered version of the plant might provide a relatively inexpensive cure for the deadly rabies virus. In a new research report appearing in The FASEB Journal , scientists produced a monoclonal antibody in transgenic tobacco plants that was shown to neutralize the rabies virus. Continue reading

Two-step immunotherapy attacks advanced ovarian cancer

Two-step immunotherapy attacks advanced ovarian cancer

Jan. 31, 2013 — Most ovarian cancer patients are diagnosed with late stage disease that is unresponsive to existing therapies. In a new study, researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine show that a two-step personalized immunotherapy treatment — a dendritic cell vaccine using patients’ own tumor followed by adoptive T cell therapy — triggers anti-tumor immune responses in these type of patients. Continue reading