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Repurposing anti-depressant medication to target medulloblastoma

Repurposing anti-depressant medication to target medulloblastoma

An international research team reports in Nature Medicine a novel molecular pathway that causes an aggressive form of medulloblastoma, and suggests repurposing an anti-depressant medication to target the new pathway may help combat one of the most common brain cancers in children. Continue reading

How cellular guardians of the intestine develop

How cellular guardians of the intestine develop

Even the most careful chosen meal can contain surprises. To defend against infectious microbes, viruses or other potential hazards that find their way to the intestines, a dedicated contingent of immune cells keeps watch within the thin layer of tissue that divides the contents of the gut from the body itself 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

Space station inspired robot to help heal sick children

Space station inspired robot to help heal sick children

Children love robots. In all shapes, sizes, “personalities” and “smarts,” these electronic wonders have been found under Christmas trees by kids and unwrapped on birthdays for years. The gift of space-inspired robotics now goes beyond toys Continue reading

Severing nerves may shrink stomach cancers: Botox injections slow growth of stomach tumors in mice

Severing nerves may shrink stomach cancers: Botox injections slow growth of stomach tumors in mice

Research from Columbia University Medical Center shows that nerves may play a critical role in stomach cancer growth and that blocking nerve signals using surgery or Botox® (onabotulinumtoxinA) could be an effective treatment for the disease. Continue reading

More than just X and Y: a new genetic basis for sex determination

More than just X and Y: a new genetic basis for sex determination

Men and women differ in plenty of obvious ways, and scientists have long known that genetic differences buried deep within our DNA underlie these distinctions. In the past, most research has focused on understanding how the genes that encode proteins act as sex determinants Continue reading

New mouse model points to therapy for liver disease

New mouse model points to therapy for liver disease

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a common affliction, affecting almost 30 percent of Americans, with a significant number suffering from its most severe form, called non-alcoholic steatohepatitis or NASH, which can lead to cirrhosis and liver cancer. In recent years, NASH has become the leading cause of liver transplantation Continue reading

Personal, public costs of scientific misconduct calculated

Personal, public costs of scientific misconduct calculated

Much has been assumed about the private and public damage of scientific misconduct. Yet few have tried to measure the costs to perpetrators and to society. A recent study calculated some of the career impacts, as well as federal funding wasted, when biomedical research papers are retracted Continue reading

NSAIDs may lower breast cancer recurrence rate in overweight, obese women

NSAIDs may lower breast cancer recurrence rate in overweight, obese women

Recurrence of hormone-related breast cancer was cut by half in overweight and obese women who regularly used aspirin or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), according to data published in Cancer Research , a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research. Continue reading

Tissue development ‘roadmap’ created to guide stem cell medicine

Tissue development ‘roadmap’ created to guide stem cell medicine

In a boon to stem cell research and regenerative medicine, scientists at Boston Children’s Hospital, the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University and Boston University have created a computer algorithm called CellNet as a “roadmap” for cell and tissue engineering, to ensure that cells engineered in the lab have the same favorable properties as cells in our own bodies. Continue reading