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Genetic cause of common breast tumors found

Genetic cause of common breast tumors found

A multi-disciplinary team of scientists from the National Cancer Centre Singapore, Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore, and Singapore General Hospital have made a major breakthrough in understanding the molecular basis of fibroadenoma, one of the most common breast tumors diagnosed in women. Continue reading

Scientists map one of most important proteins in life — and cancer

Scientists map one of most important proteins in life — and cancer

Scientists reveal the structure of one of the most important and complicated proteins in cell division — a fundamental process in life and the development of cancer — in research published in Nature . Continue reading

New technology for diagnosis of cancer cells

New technology for diagnosis of cancer cells

The type of therapy a cancer patient receives, largely depends on the trained eye of a pathologist. Investigating diseased organs and tissues under the microscope is one of their tasks. However, human judgment is, by its very nature, subject to a certain degree of variation Continue reading

Alzheimer’s linked to brain hyperactivity

Alzheimer’s linked to brain hyperactivity

Patients with Alzheimer’s disease run a high risk of seizures. While the amyloid-beta protein involved in the development and progression of Alzheimer’s seems the most likely cause for this neuronal hyperactivity, how and why this elevated activity takes place hasn’t yet been explained — until now. A new study by Tel Aviv University researchers, published in Cell Reports , pinpoints the precise molecular mechanism that may trigger an enhancement of neuronal activity in Alzheimer’s patients, which subsequently damages memory and learning functions Continue reading

Gut microbe levels are linked to type 2 diabetes and obesity

Gut microbe levels are linked to type 2 diabetes and obesity

People with Type 2 diabetes or obesity have changes in the composition of their intestinal micro-organisms — called the gut microbiota — that healthy people do not have, researchers from Turkey have found. They presented the results Sunday at the joint meeting of the International Society of Endocrinology and the Endocrine Society: ICE/ENDO 2014 in Chicago. Continue reading

Biology of infection: A bacterial ballistic system

Biology of infection: A bacterial ballistic system

Bacteria secrete a broad range of specific proteins that can affect the behavior or survival of cells in their environment. Among the specialized transport systems responsible for the export of such factors are so-called Type VI secretion systems. In collaboration with Axel Mogk of the Center for Molecular Biology Heidelberg (ZMBH), biochemist Petra Wendler at the LMU’s Gene Center has now determined the three-dimensional structure of one of these export complexes. Continue reading

Bacteria evade human immune system with a burst of mutations during initial infection

Bacteria evade human immune system with a burst of mutations during initial infection

Bacteria that cause ulcers in humans undergo accelerated evolution during the initial stages of infection, allowing them to evade the immune system, according to new research by an international team of researchers including Penn State scientists. The study shows, for the first time, and in real-time, the interplay between the human immune system and invading bacteria that allows the bacteria to counter the immune response by quickly evolving. A paper describing the research is published in the 13 June 2014 issue of the journal Nature Communications Continue reading

Eye evolution: From dark-light to detailed eyesight

Eye evolution: From dark-light to detailed eyesight

Larvae of the marine bristle worm Platynereis dumerilii orient themselves using light. Early in their development, these larvae swim towards the light to use surface currents for their dispersal. Continue reading

Humans’ tiny cellular machines: Spliceosomes in detail

Humans’ tiny cellular machines: Spliceosomes in detail

A grandfather clock is, on its surface, a simple yet elegant machine. Tall and stately, its job is to steadily tick away the time. Continue reading

Atomic structure of essential circadian clock protein complex determined

Atomic structure of essential circadian clock protein complex determined

Structural biologists have made important progress towards better understanding the functioning of the circadian clock. The circadian or inner clock coordinates the sleep-wake rhythm and many other body processes that regulate, for example, metabolism, blood pressure, and the immune system Continue reading