List/Grid

Molecular Biology Subscribe to Molecular Biology

Second-line afatinib significantly improves progression-free survival in recurrent or metastatic head and neck cancer, phase III trial shows

Second-line afatinib significantly improves progression-free survival in recurrent or metastatic head and neck cancer, phase III trial shows

The tyrosine kinase inhibitor afatinib significantly improved progression-free survival compared to methotrexate in patients with recurrent or metastatic squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck after failure of platinum-based chemotherapy, the results of a phase III trial show. Continue reading

Biologists delay the aging process by ‘remote control’

Biologists delay the aging process by ‘remote control’

UCLA biologists have identified a gene that can slow the aging process throughout the entire body when activated remotely in key organ systems. Working with fruit flies, the life scientists activated a gene called AMPK that is a key energy sensor in cells; it gets activated when cellular energy levels are low Continue reading

In one of nature’s innovations, a single cell smashes and rebuilds its own genome

In one of nature’s innovations, a single cell smashes and rebuilds its own genome

Life can be so intricate and novel that even a single cell can pack a few surprises, according to a study led by Princeton University researchers. The pond-dwelling, single-celled organism Oxytricha trifallax has the remarkable ability to break its own DNA into nearly a quarter-million pieces and rapidly reassemble those pieces when it’s time to mate, the researchers report in the journal Cell. Continue reading

Targeting protein-making machinery to stop harmful bacteria

Targeting protein-making machinery to stop harmful bacteria

One challenge in killing off harmful bacteria is that many of them develop a resistance to antibiotics. Continue reading

Disease in a dish approach could aid Huntington’s disease discovery

Disease in a dish approach could aid Huntington’s disease discovery

Creating induced pluripotent stem cells or iPS cells allows researchers to establish “disease in a dish” models of conditions ranging from Alzheimer’s disease to diabetes. Scientists at Yerkes National Primate Research Center, Emory University have now applied the technology to a model of Huntington’s disease (HD) in transgenic nonhuman primates, allowing them to conveniently assess the efficacy of potential therapies on neuronal cells in the laboratory. Continue reading

New gene mutations for Wilms tumor found

New gene mutations for Wilms tumor found

Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center and the Gill Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Children’s Medical Center, Dallas, have made significant progress in defining new genetic causes of Wilms tumor, a type of kidney cancer found only in children. Wilms tumor is the most common childhood genitourinary tract cancer and the third most common solid tumor of childhood Continue reading

Knowing how bacteria take out trash could lead to new antibiotics

Knowing how bacteria take out trash could lead to new antibiotics

A collaborative team of scientists including biochemist Peter Chien at the University of Massachusetts Amherst has reconstructed how bacteria tightly control their growth and division, a process known as the cell cycle, by specifically destroying key proteins through regulated protein degradation. Regulated protein degradation uses specific enzymes called energy dependent proteases to selective destroy certain targets. Because regulated protein degradation is critical for bacterial virulence and invasion, understanding how these proteases function should help to uncover pathways that can be targeted by new antibiotics Continue reading

New discovery could help turn antibiotic into antimalarial drug

New discovery could help turn antibiotic into antimalarial drug

Melbourne researchers are making progress towards new antimalarial drugs, after revealing how an antibiotic called emetine blocks the molecular machinery that produces the proteins required for malaria parasite survival. Although emetine is effective against malaria it is not used as a preventive drug due to its significant side effects. Continue reading

Mimicking natural evolution with ‘promiscuous reactions’ to improve the diversity of drugs

Mimicking natural evolution with ‘promiscuous reactions’ to improve the diversity of drugs

The researchers, who report their findings online in the journal Nature Chemistry , took their inspiration from evolution in nature. The research may uncover new pharmaceutical drugs that traditional methods would never have found. “Nature produces some amazing structures with really interesting biological activity, but the plant or animal did not design them. Continue reading

Some anti-inflammatory drugs affect more than their targets

Some anti-inflammatory drugs affect more than their targets

Researchers have discovered that three commonly used nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs, alter the activity of enzymes within cell membranes. Their finding suggests that, if taken at higher-than-approved doses and/or for long periods of time, these prescription-level NSAIDs and other drugs that affect the membrane may produce wide-ranging and unwanted side effects. More positively, the researchers say, their work provides the basis for a test that drug developers can use to predict and perhaps avoid these side effects in new medicines they make Continue reading