Research

When scientific curiosity paves the way for improved healthcare: Read more about promising studies and trials that lead to more effective drugs, procedures as well as medical guidelines.

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Study

Half of Ebola outbreaks go undetected

Half of Ebola outbreaks have gone undetected since the virus was discovered in 1976, scientists at the University of Cambridge estimate. The new findings come amid rising concern about Ebola in the…

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Research

Prostate cancer: Researchers find molecular switch to prolong survival

Wilmot Cancer Institute scientists believe they have figured out why a commonly used drug to treat late-stage prostate cancer often stops working after four or five months and appears to have a dual…

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In future pregnancies

Identifying the risk of recurrence of developmental disorder

Having a child with a developmental disorder can cause parents to worry about the outcome of further pregnancies. In cases where the genetic mutation causing the disorder is not present in either…

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Throat cancer

Antibodies against HPV16 can develop for decades

An international group of researchers has found that antibodies to the human papilloma virus type 16 (HPV16) develop in the body between six to 40 years prior to a clinical diagnosis of throat…

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Microsatellites

Stomach and colorectal cancer: AI identifyies patients for immunotherapy

Changes in certain sections of the genetic material of cancer cells, so-called microsatellites, can provide an important indication of whether immunotherapy may be successful in a patient with…

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Gene-editing

CRISPR baby mutation significantly increases mortality

A genetic mutation that a Chinese scientist attempted to create in twin babies born last year, ostensibly to help them fend off HIV infection, is also associated with a 21% increase in mortality in…

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CRISPR-fied chickens

Gene-edited chicken cells could leave flu with nowhere to hide

Scientists from Imperial College London and the University of Edinburgh have used gene-editing techniques to stop the bird flu virus from spreading, in chicken cells grown in the lab.

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Intervention in fat metabolism

Improved diabetes in spite of obesity

Eating too much fat and sugar makes you overweight and unhealthy – even young children know that. But why is that, and is there anything we can do about it? In a study published in the journal…

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Bioprinting

Producing tissue and organs through lithography

The production of artificial organs is a hot research topic. In the near future, artificial organs will compensate for the lack of organ donations and replace animal experiments. Although there are…

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Crohn’s disease

Adult-onset IBD linked to higher mortality

While the onset of inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease) in adulthood is tied to a higher mortality, the actual number of deaths has been falling, a Swedish study from…

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Research

Anxiety might be alleviated by regulating gut bacteria

People who experience anxiety symptoms might be helped by taking steps to regulate the microorganisms in their gut using probiotic and non-probiotic food and supplements, suggests a review of studies…

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Psychiatry

Leonardo da Vinci: pure genius or ADHD?

Professor Marco Catani suggests the best explanation for Leonardo da Vinci's inability to finish his works is that the great artist may have had Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder. Leonardo…

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Survival specialists

Systems biology of antibiotics

Bacteria have fascinating properties. They adapt excellently to their respective environment, and they existed long before humans. Their toughness has led to the fact that bacteria have successfully…

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Common DNA structure

Nano-signature discovery could revolutionise cancer diagnosis

A quick and easy test to detect cancer from blood or biopsy tissue could eventually result in a new approach to patient diagnosis. The test has been developed by University of Queensland researchers…

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Up in smoke

Early exposure to nicotine predisposes brain to addiction

Neonatal exposure to nicotine alters the reward circuity in the brains of newborn mice, increasing their preference for the drug in later adulthood, report researchers at University of California San…

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Research

First use of vasoprotective antibody in cardiogenic shock

Scientists at the German Centre for Cardiovascular Research (DZHK) have started a study to find out whether a monoclonal antibody restoring vascular integrity is safe and has positive effects on…

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New discovery

Cancer drugs promote stem cell properties of colorectal cancer

Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) and the Mannheim University Medical Center have now discovered that a certain group of cancer drugs (MEK…

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Growing danger

Bowel cancer rising among young adults in Europe

The rate of bowel cancer – also known as colorectal cancer or CRC – is rising among adults aged 20-49 in Europe, suggests new research. Rates rose most steeply among the youngest age group (20-29…

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Nanotechnology

Targeting cancer cells with gold nanorods

Scientists at the University of Birmingham are working with a Canadian tech company to investigate whether gold nanorods can be used to target cancer cells in the human body. They have joined experts…

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Clinical trials beginning

Possible preeclampsia treatment is on the way

For over 20 years, a team of researchers at Lund University has worked on developing a drug against preeclampsia – a serious disorder which annually affects around 9 million pregnant women…

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Gastroenterology

Biliary tract cancer: Genetic imbalance could be the key

Patients with biliary tract cancer have altered genetic architecture in some immune system receptor systems. This has been shown by researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden in a new study…

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Early detection

Lung cancer: Why screening is especially beneficial for women

Is computed tomography suitable for detecting lung cancer at a very early stage and thus still well treatable? Scientists at the German Cancer Research Center have investigated this with the LUSI…

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Improvement of cardiac care

Rapid myocardial infarction verification

The use of troponin assays to rule in or rule out myocardial infarction (MI) rapidly is critical on several levels. The quick result can reassure the patient that they have not had a heart attack and can return home safely; or, in the event of MI, the relevant treatment can start very soon. It also ensures that clinicians can make the right decision with confidence. Troponin levels have been the…

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Neurology

On-going malignant astrocytoma vaccine tests

A new vaccination for malignant astrocytoma brings such patients hope. However, research is still in its infancy. We spoke with Professor Michael Platten, Medical Director of the Neurological Clinic at Medical University Mannheim, about the present state of research and the serious opportunities this presents. During the interview, he also revealed how cooperation with the pharmaceutical industry…

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New study

Ribosome inhibition may hold the key to multi-stage cancer treatment

Nearly 90% of all cancer patient deaths are due to metastasis. A study from Uppsala University shows that a process that allows the cells to metastasise is aided by the synthesis of new ribosomes, the cell components in which proteins are produced. The results open the possibility for new treatment strategies for advanced cancers. The study is published in Nature Communications. As tumours…

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Bioprinting

3D printing of biological tissue

The future of medicine is biological – and scientists hope we will soon be using 3D-printed biologically functional tissue to replace irreparably damaged tissue in the body. A team of researchers from the Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology IGB has been working with the University of Stuttgart for a number of years on a project to develop and optimize suitable…

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Dementia pathway

Is LATE the new Alzheimer’s?

A recently recognized brain disorder that mimics clinical features of Alzheimer’s disease has for the first time been defined with recommended diagnostic criteria and other guidelines for advancing and catalyzing future research. Scientists from several National Institutes of Health-funded institutions, in collaboration with international peers, described the newly-named pathway to dementia,…

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Aging research

Finding Nemo's secret of longevity

It is the Methusalem among fishkind: The colorful Clownfish lives longer than 20 years in the Aquarium. Researchers of the Scuola Normale Superiore in Pisa, Italy, in collaboration with the Leibniz Institute on Aging (FLI) in Jena, Germany, have investigated the genetics behind the longevity of Clownfish. By sequencing the genome and comparing the sequences with other species, they were able to…

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Survival of the fittest

How bacteria can adapt to resist antibiotic treatment

In a joint collaboration, researchers from Denmark and Switzerland have shown that bacteria produce a specific stress molecule, divide more slowly, and thus save energy when they are exposed to antibiotics. The new knowledge is expected to form the basis for development of a new type of antibiotics. All free-living organisms are under constant pressure to survive. Darwin dubbed this…

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Antisocial behaviour

How the brain of children with conduct disorder is different

Behavioural problems in young people with severe antisocial behaviour – known as conduct disorder – could be caused by differences in the brain’s wiring that link the brain’s emotional centres together, according to new research led by the University of Birmingham. Conduct disorder affects around 1 in 20 children and teenagers and is one of the most common reasons for referral to child…

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Research

Promising new stroke therapy in development

Researchers at The Ohio State University College of Medicine and The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center have developed a novel stroke therapy that, when tested in mice and dogs, has proven superior to the standard of care therapy now offered to patients suffering a stroke. Findings of the study are published online in Molecular Therapy. “We have shown that our drug, which is completely…

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Microscopy in the body

The next generation of endoscopy technology

Biotechnologists, physicists, and medical researchers at FAU have developed technology for microscopic imaging in living organisms. A miniaturised multi-photon microscope, which could be used in an endoscope in future, excites the body’s own molecules to illuminate and enables cells and tissue structures to be imaged without the use of synthetic contrast agents. The findings have now been…

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Biotechnology

First ever 3D printed heart from a patient’s own cells

In a major medical breakthrough, Tel Aviv University researchers have "printed" the world's first 3D vascularised engineered heart using a patient's own cells and biological materials. Until now, scientists in regenerative medicine — a field positioned at the crossroads of biology and technology — have been successful in printing only simple tissues without blood vessels. "This…

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A new weapon against antibiotic resistance

Programming a hunter/killer toxin

When the first antibiotics were discovered in the early 20th century, the rate of death from infectious diseases fell dramatically. But the emergence of multidrug-resistant bacteria as a result of antibiotic misuse is raising fears that by 2050, these same diseases will once again become the leading cause of death worldwide. In a bid to boost the arsenal available to tackle this threat,…

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Preventing toxic plaques

Key step forward in tackling neurodegenerative diseases

A protein complex has been shown to play a key role in preventing the build-up of toxic plaques in the brain linked to neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s disease. An international team of researchers from the Universities of Leeds, Stanford (USA) and Konstanz (Germany) have discovered that the nascent polypeptide-associated complex (NAC) helps to prevent the…

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NAFLD

Fatty liver disease: critical regulator discovered

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a condition where fat accumulates in the liver and has become the most common liver disease worldwide. While NAFLD shows few or no symptoms at initial stages, it is a potentially serious disease which can progress to an inflammatory state called steatohepatitis (NASH), which can lead to liver cirrhosis and cancer. Fatty liver disease can be managed by…

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CMT, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's

Study links key protein to Charcot-Marie-Tooth and other nerve diseases

A new study provides critical insight into a little-known, yet relatively common, inherited neurological condition called Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (CMT). The findings point to a pathway to possible treatments for this disease and better understanding of other neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer's disease, that affect millions. The study focused on two related proteins, MFN2 and…

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Building a risk profile

Audiologists seek genetic link to tinnitus

Tinnitus, more commonly known as ringing in the ears, is a serious audiological and neurological condition affecting nearly 50 million Americans. Noise and music exposure are the predominant environmental risk factors for tinnitus. There is no known cure, and there are no FDA-approved medications developed specifically to treat it. The fact is, tinnitus is very common but not well understood. A…

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Gene editing

DNA “shredder”: a different kind of CRISPR

In the last six years, a tool called CRISPR-Cas9 has transformed genetic research, allowing scientists to snip and edit DNA strands at precise locations like a pair of tiny scissors. But sometimes, it takes more than scissors to do the job. Now, a collaborative international team has unveiled a new CRISPR-based tool that acts more like a shredder, able to wipe out long stretches of DNA in human…

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In situ vaccination

Turning tumors into cancer vaccine factories

Researchers at Mount Sinai have developed a novel approach to cancer immunotherapy, injecting immune stimulants directly into a tumor to teach the immune system to destroy it and other tumor cells throughout the body. The “in situ vaccination” worked so well in patients with advanced-stage lymphoma that it is also undergoing trials in breast and head and neck cancer patients, according to a…

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Tumor-associated macrophages

Immune cells key to predicting cancer outcomes

Scientists have identified key changes in immune cells within cancerous tumours that could help improve the development of treatments. The study, which has been published in the journal Cancer Cell, also found a set of genes that are expressed at high levels in breast cancer tumours and linked to more aggressive cancer types. Researchers say the discoveries offer clues to diagnosis and predicting…

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Dial 'M' for microfold cells

Identifying a key player in gut defense development

A joint team from Hokkaido University and Keio University has identified a gut protein essential for neonatal mice to fight infections, according to research published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine. The insight could help understand how infants develop their own intestinal immune systems after weaning. The gut is constantly exposed to potentially harmful bacteria that come with food and…

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Virology

Trapping viruses inside a cell: harmful or helpful?

Viruses are often used as vehicles for delivery in gene therapy because they’re engineered not to damage the cell once they get there, but neglecting to consider how the virus will exit the cell could have consequences. Some viruses use a molecule called heparan sulfate to help them attach to cells. The molecule, found in many different kinds of cells (including those from animal tissue), could…

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Finding the connection

Can air pollution lead to psychosis in teens?

Research from King’s College London provides the first evidence of an association between air pollution and psychotic experiences in adolescence. The study, published in JAMA Psychiatry, provides a potential explanation for why growing up in cities is a risk factor for psychosis. This is the first time researchers have linked detailed geographical air pollution data with a representative sample…

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AAA

New cause of abdominal aortic aneurysm uncovered

Researchers have discovered that a family of lipids (fats) contribute to the development of a serious aortic disease, by driving clotting in the blood vessel wall. The findings could lead to the development of new treatments for this potentially life threatening condition. The team, led by researchers at Cardiff University, in collaboration with colleagues at Oxford and Erlangen, discovered that…

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Neurodegeneration

Study sheds new light on microglia

Inside the body, disease and injury can leave behind quite the mess — a scattering of cellular debris, like bits of broken glass, rubber and steel left behind in a car accident. Inside the central nervous system (CNS), a region that includes the brain and spinal cord, it is the job of certain cells, called microglia, to clean up that cellular debris. Microglia have counterparts called…

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