Photonic endoscopy

Fibre probe explores the depth of our brain

This could be a major step towards a better understanding of the functions of deeply hidden brain compartments, such as the formation of memories, as well as related dysfunctions, including…

Klotho

Could a ’longevity protein’ be the key to rejuvenating muscles?

One of the downsides to getting older is that skeletal muscle loses its ability to heal after injury. New research from the University of Pittsburgh implicates the so-called “longevity protein”…

Unhealthy lifestyle

How working night shifts raises your risk of type 2 diabetes

Women who work intermittent night shifts and do not follow a healthy lifestyle face an especially high risk of type 2 diabetes, suggests a study published by The BMJ. The researchers found that the…

Controversial research

HIV and gene editing: beware of the butterfly effect, cautions expert

The claim of a chinese professor has caused quite a controversy: He Jiankui announced that he successfully modified human DNA to prevent two girls from contracting HIV. Upon the leak of this research, ethicists and scientists alike condemned Jiankui's gene editing in humans. West Virginia University Vice President and Executive Dean for Health Sciences Dr. Clay Marsh says that although “a lot of good promise” could come from gene editing, it is mostly practiced in lab models, not in people. He notes the human body is complicated and everything is so interconnected that changing one thing can lead to a cascade of changing everything.

Deadly DNA

Suicide: Is it in our genes?

Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States, claiming more than 44,000 people in the country every year, similar to the number of deaths caused by the opioid epidemic. Previous…

Hypotrichosis

Hair loss? This gene might be to blame

Hypotrichosis simplex leads to progressive hair loss already in childhood. A team of researchers led by human geneticists at the University Hospital of Bonn has now deciphered a new gene that is…

Cancer research

Seeking a vaccine to prevent lethal pneumonia

Mariette Barbier, an assistant professor in the West Virginia University School of Medicine, and her research team are investigating ways to keep cystic fibrosis patients and other at-risk…

Neuroscience

"Neuropixels" neural probe to map brain activity

Imec, the world-leading research and innovation hub in nanoelectronics and digital technologies, released and is making available its state-of-the-art high-density neural probe, Neuropixels, to the…

Blood pressure

How does the baroreceptor reflex work?

The baroreceptor reflex is a fascinating medical phenomenon. The reflex is controlled by specialized neurons that react in just a fraction of a second to keep blood pressure fairly consistent. For…

It's all connected

Understanding the "wiring diagrams" of genes in complex tissues

How is the activity of all genes in cells of higher organisms interconnected? And how are the genetic "wiring diagrams" of the cells in complex tissues coordinated with each other?…

Glucose metabolism

Sugar and stress: how are they connected?

Chronic stress is a well-known risk factor for the development of psychiatric illnesses including depression disorders. The brain requires a great deal of glucose, and stress is known to alter…

Glioblastoma

Building a better model for brain tumours

A research team led by the University of Alabama at Birmingham is launching a study to find a better model for glioblastoma, a particularly devastating type of brain tumour, to help determine the…

Innovative material

'Smart' surfaces might pave the way for safer implants and better diagnostics

Researchers at McMaster University have solved a vexing problem by engineering surface coatings that can repel everything, such as bacteria, viruses and living cells, but can be modified to permit…

Cause and effect

Diabetes and heart failure: discovering the connection

Men with diabetes are 2.4 times more likely than non-diabetics to suffer heart failure and women are five times more likely. But why? A new Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine study…

Mysterious blackout

What happens when we lose consciousness during anaesthesia?

The first successful surgery under anaesthesia occurred in the 1840s. Since then—more than 170 years later—people have been developing theories about what might be going on in the brain while a…

Tuberculosis

So did drug resistant TB evolve and spread globally

The most common form of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (TB) originated in Europe and spread to Asia, Africa and the Americas with European explorers and colonialists, reveals a new study led by UCL and…

Study

1 in 2 women set to develop dementia, Parkinson's disease, or stroke

One in two women and one in three men will likely be diagnosed with dementia, Parkinson's disease, or stroke in their lifetime, estimate Dutch researchers in an observational study

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

COPD: Biomarker for kidney disease has unexpected benefits

A commonly used biomarker of kidney disease may also indicate lung problems, particularly COPD, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, according to new research published online in the American…

Diabetes

Measuring glucose levels without drawing blood

Researchers recently evaluated the accuracy of a technology to monitor blood glucose levels without needles or a finger prick. Early results show that the noninvasive technology measures blood…

Dying neurons

Decoding the regulation of cell survival

An interdisciplinary and international research group led by Dr. Volker Busskamp from the Center for Regenerative Therapies Dresden at the TU Dresden (CRTD) has decoded the regulatory impact on…

Painful protein

Understanding Bechterew's disease

Autoimmune diseases like Bechterew’s disease direct our immune systems agains our own bodies. Now, researchers at Jacobs University Bremen have come one step closer to understanding the molecular…

Research

Non-small cell lung cancer: women live longer than men

Women diagnosed with non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLC) live longer than their male counterparts, according to results of a SWOG study presented by Loyola Medicine researcher Kathy Albain, MD, at…

Minds connected

Parents’ brains ‘sync up’ with their infant’s when they play together

When infants are playing with objects, their early attempts to pay attention to things are accompanied by bursts of high-frequency activity in their brain. But what happens when parents play together…

Transcranial magnetic stimulation

Treating post-stroke depression with magnetic fields

Obstetricians and midwives often warn new mothers about postpartum depression. They might mention what symptoms women should look out for—such as crying spells or extreme irritability—and where…

Guselkumab vs Secukinumab

Psoriasis: New data point to improved treatment

The Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson announced results from the ECLIPSE study demonstrating that Tremfya® (guselkumab) was superior to Cosentyx® (secukinumab)* in treating…

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Immune-boosting substance

This gel could help the body after cancer surgery

Many people who are diagnosed with cancer will undergo some type of surgery to treat their disease — almost 95 percent of people with early-diagnosed breast cancer will require surgery and it’s often the first line of treatment for people with brain tumors, for example. But despite improvements in surgical techniques over the past decade, the cancer often comes back after the procedure. Now,…

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Pregnancy

Giving birth raises risk of breast cancer in younger women

Younger women who have recently had a child may have a higher risk of breast cancer than their peers of the same age who do not have children, according to a large-scale analysis co-led by a University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center researcher. The findings, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, may seem contrary to conventional wisdom that childbirth is…

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Birth outcome study

Obesity and pregnancy: A risky couple

New research from the University of Adelaide’s Robinson Research Institute supports the need for dietary and lifestyle interventions before overweight and obese women become pregnant. The researchers have reported the results of a large study of birth outcomes in more than 500 overweight or obese women from three public maternity units in Adelaide, Australia in The Lancet Diabetes &…

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Intracerebral hemorrhage

Can sudden weather change raise stroke risk?

A collaborative study led by a neurologist at Rush University Medical Center and an environmental scientist at the University of Illinois at Chicago suggests that weather patterns that cause dramatic changes in barometric pressure may increase the incidence of a type of stroke known as spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage, that is, the rupture of a blood vessel in the brain. The researchers…

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Neuro-research

Brain-computer interfaces: Getting a Grasp on how we think

A world where machines can be controlled by thought alone – such is the promise of so-called brain-computer interfaces (BCI). BCIs are both hardware and software communication systems that read brain and nerve signals, convert those into electrical signals and translate human thoughts into machine commands. Developers of BCIs rely on artificial intelligence, neural network models and big data…

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Advanced materials

Nanocarriers open up to cancer

Nanosystems that deliver anticancer drugs or imaging materials to tumours are showing significant progress, particularly those that respond to tumour-related stimuli, according to a review published in the journal Science and Technology of Advanced Materials. However, further research is still required to make sure these delivery systems are stable, non-toxic and biodegradable. Nanocarriers…

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Myelodysplastic syndrome

Genetic testing helps predict disease recurrence

A DNA-based analysis of blood cells soon after a stem cell transplant can predict likelihood of disease recurrence in patients with myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), a group of cancerous disorders characterized by dysfunctional blood cells. Such a practice could help doctors identify patients at high risk of disease recurrence early after a transplant and help guide treatment decisions.

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Infections

Zika virus strips immune cells of their identity

Macrophages are immune cells that are supposed to protect the body from infection by viruses and bacteria. Yet Zika virus preferentially infects these cells. Researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine have now unraveled how the virus shuts down the genes that make macrophages function as immune cells.

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Oncology

Discovering cancer cell mutations with optimized technologies

Cancer cells often have mutations in their DNA that can give scientists clues about how the cancer started or which treatment may be most effective. Finding these mutations can be difficult, but a new method may offer more complete, comprehensive results. A team of researchers has developed a new framework that can combine three existing methods of finding these large mutations - or structural…

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Hope against arthritis

Growing cartilage – how does it work?

Anyone with arthritis can appreciate how useful it would be if scientists could grow cartilage in the lab. To this end, Keck School of Medicine of USC scientists in the USC Stem Cell laboratory of Denis Evseenko, MD, PhD, collaborated with colleagues at several institutions to provide new insights into how gene activity drives the development of cartilage. Their findings appear in Nature…

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Research

Zika virus proteins inhibit brain development

In healthy individuals, the Zika virus causes flu-like symptoms. If a pregnant woman becomes infected, the unborn child can suffer from severe brain abnormalities as a result of mechanisms that have not yet been explained. A study by the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry (MPI-B) shows that Zika virus proteins bind to cellular proteins that are…

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Research

Link between obesity, the brain, and genetics

Clinicians should consider how the way we think can make us vulnerable to obesity, and how obesity is genetically intertwined with brain structure and mental performance, according to new research. The study, led by researchers at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital (The Neuro), was an examination of MRI and cognitive test data from 1,200 individuals, supplied as part of the Human…

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From science fiction to reality

Researchers 3D print prototype for bionic eye

A team of researchers at the University of Minnesota have, for the first time, fully 3D printed an array of light receptors on a hemispherical surface. This discovery marks a significant step toward creating a “bionic eye” that could someday help blind people see or sighted people see better. The research is published in Advanced Materials, a peer-reviewed scientific journal covering…

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Weak heart

The many causes of dilated cardiomyopathy

A major study has been launched to investigate the interaction between genes and lifestyle factors and dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). Led by Professor Stuart Cook, at the National Heart and Lung Institute, this, the largest ever DCM study, will investigate why people develop DCM, with a focus on who is most at risk of sudden death or heart failure (HF). Six hospital trusts across England –…

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Cardiology congress

ESC 2018: At the heart of research

When delegates from around 150 countries converge on Munich for ESC Congress 2018 they will no doubt reflect on what they themselves eat. Yes, nutrition is up for debate, questioning, for example, whether weight loss therapies can also prevent heart attacks and strokes. Results from the CAMELLIA-TIMI 61 trial of 12,000 overweight individuals with established cardiovascular disease or diabetes…

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Promising research

First steps towards a new, targeted lung cancer treatment

Scientists have identified a key molecular player in a subtype of lung cancer which could lead to a new way to tackle the disease, according to research published in Nature Communications. They found lung squamous cell carcinoma (LUSC) cells contained high amounts of a protein called BCL11A. The study showed that manipulating the gene responsible for the protein stopped the development of LUSC in…

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Boxers or briefs?

Why getting rid of tighty-whities is good for your fertility

Researchers have discovered a good reason to not wear tight-fitting underwear – beyond the obvious aspect of fashion: According to new research led by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, men who frequently wear boxers have significantly higher sperm concentrations and total sperm counts when compared with their briefs-wearing counterparts. The findings of this study, conducted in the…

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