Researchers at the RIKEN Brain Science Institute in Japan have discovered how to reverse the abnormal axonal development characteristic of CFEOM3, a congenital disease that affects the muscles that control eye movements. The work shows how creating a specific mutation rescued abnormal axonal growth in the developing mouse brain.
... Read more »
Minoura, I., Takazaki, H., Ayukawa, R., Saruta, C., Hachikubo, Y., Uchimura, S., Hida, T., Kamiguchi, H., Shimogori, T., & Muto, E. (2016) Reversal of axonal growth defects in an extraocular fibrosis model by engineering the kinesin–microtubule interface. Nature Communications, 10058. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms10058
Previous research has suggested that the Amazon could reach a tipping point when rainforest gives way to a grassy savannah. Could this really happen? A new modeling study suggests the diversity of the Amazon could prevent such a drastic change.... Read more »
Levine NM, Zhang K, Longo M, Baccini A, Phillips OL, Lewis SL, Alvarez-Dávila E, Segalin de Andrade AC, Brienen RJ, Erwin TL.... (2015) Ecosystem heterogeneity determines the ecological resilience of the Amazon to climate change. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. PMID: 26711984
Learn what electrolithoautotrophs are and how the scientists proved that A. ferrooxidans can use electric potential to fuel growth.... Read more »
Ishii, T., Kawaichi, S., Nakagawa, H., Hashimoto, K., & Nakamura, R. (2015) From chemolithoautotrophs to electrolithoautotrophs: CO2 fixation by Fe(II)-oxidizing bacteria coupled with direct uptake of electrons from solid electron sources. Frontiers in Microbiology. DOI: 10.3389/fmicb.2015.00994
Natural clay (such as Oregon Blue clay) can help in killing a broad range of bacterial pathogens including antibiotic resistant bacteria.
Researchers have reported that natural antibacterial clays upon hydration and topical application can kill human pathogens and these pathogens also include antibiotic resistant strains. They noted that only certain clays are bactericidal in nature. Those clays having soluble reduced met........ Read more »
Morrison, K., Misra, R., & Williams, L. (2016) Unearthing the Antibacterial Mechanism of Medicinal Clay: A Geochemical Approach to Combating Antibiotic Resistance. Scientific Reports, 19043. DOI: 10.1038/srep19043
All it took was one mutation more than 600 million years ago. With that random act, a new protein function was born that helped our single-celled ancestor transition into an organized multicellular organism. That’s the scenario — done with some molecular time travel — that emerged from basic research in the lab of University of Oregon biochemist Ken Prehoda.... Read more »
Anderson, D., Whitney, D., Hanson-Smith, V., Woznica, A., Campodonico-Burnett, W., Volkman, B., King, N., Prehoda, K., & Thornton, J. (2016) Evolution of an ancient protein function involved in organized multicellularity in animals. eLife. DOI: 10.7554/eLife.10147
Black smokers are deep-sea hydrothermal vents found in the ocean. Now scientists believe that they may host electroecosystems in which the primary producers use electric currents as their energy source.... Read more »
Nakamura, R., Takashima, T., Kato, S., Takai, K., Yamamoto, M., & Hashimoto, K. (2010) Electrical Current Generation across a Black Smoker Chimney. Angewandte Chemie International Edition, 49(42), 7692-7694. DOI: 10.1002/anie.201003311
Using mathematical models, scientists have ‘looked’ into the interior of super-Earths and discovered that they may contain compounds that are forbidden by the classical rules of chemistry — these substances may increase the heat transfer rate and strengthen the magnetic field on these planets.... Read more »
Niu, H., Oganov, A., Chen, X., & Li, D. (2015) Prediction of novel stable compounds in the Mg-Si-O system under exoplanet pressures. Scientific Reports, 18347. DOI: 10.1038/srep18347
If your favorite activity is lying motionless on the ground, you'd better make sure hungry animals can't find you. Snakes and other creatures that hunt by ambush, waiting for their prey to wander past, often have impressive visual camouflage. But at least one type of viper seems to disguise itself in another way, too: its smell is undetectable to predators.
Puff adders (Bitis arietans) are big, fat vipers that move around very little while they wait for prey. They're widespread in Af... Read more »
Miller AK, Maritz B, McKay S, Glaudas X, & Alexander GJ. (2015) An ambusher's arsenal: chemical crypsis in the puff adder (Bitis arietans). Proceedings. Biological sciences / The Royal Society, 282(1821). PMID: 26674950
A molecule is like an instrument in an orchestra. Find out about the symphony inside your own cells.... Read more »
C. Wilson, R. V. Agafonov, M. Hoemberger, S. Kutter, A. Zorba, J. Halpin, V. Buosi, R. Otten, D. Waterman, D. L. Theobald, D. Kern. (2015) Using ancient protein kinases to unravel a modern cancer drug’s mechanism. Science, 882-886. info:/10.1126/science.aaa1823
A recent study looking at the impact of USDA-recommended diets on the environment has received significant media attention. Some of these reports have been a bit misleading, so read here to learn the details about this important study that should impact US dietary policy!... Read more »
Tom, M., Fischbeck, P., & Hendrickson, C. (2015) Energy use, blue water footprint, and greenhouse gas emissions for current food consumption patterns and dietary recommendations in the US. Environment Systems and Decisions. DOI: 10.1007/s10669-015-9577-y
LSD is known to cause changes in consciousness, including “ego-dissolution”, or a loss of the sense of self. Despite a detailed knowledge of the action of LSD at specific serotonin receptors, it has not been understood how this these pharmacological effects can translate into such a profound effect on consciousness.... Read more »
Lebedev, A., Lövdén, M., Rosenthal, G., Feilding, A., Nutt, D., & Carhart-Harris, R. (2015) Finding the self by losing the self: Neural correlates of ego-dissolution under psilocybin. Human Brain Mapping, 36(8), 3137-3153. DOI: 10.1002/hbm.22833
Water and energy policy have long been separate despite the deep link between energy production and freshwater consumption. Here we discuss a new study examining this link with policy implications about how to prevent resource scarcity.... Read more »
Holland RA, Scott KA, Flörke M, Brown G, Ewers RM, Farmer E, Kapos V, Muggeridge A, Scharlemann JP, Taylor G.... (2015) Global impacts of energy demand on the freshwater resources of nations. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 112(48). PMID: 26627262
Swedish scientists have built a camera that makes methane gas visible. The tool could help researchers study greenhouses gases and answer tricky questions about climate change. It's also good for visualizing cow farts.
Magnus Gålfalk of Linköping University explains that the camera works using infrared spectroscopy. Called "hyperspectral imaging," the method simultaneously captures a spectrum of infrared light for every pixel in a photo. Many gases absorb infrared light, Gålfalk says, ........ Read more »
World leaders meet in Paris this week to agree to legally binding agreements to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In honor of this historic conference, I take a look at a few stories around the world about how climate change already influences our global civilization.... Read more »
Rivero-Calle, S., Gnanadesikan, A., Del Castillo, C., Balch, W., & Guikema, S. (2015) Multidecadal increase in North Atlantic coccolithophores and the potential role of rising CO2. Science. DOI: 10.1126/science.aaa8026
In addition to treating depression, a commonly used antidepressant medication also protects against compounds that can cause memory loss and dementia, a Loyola University Medical Center study has found. The study found that blood levels of two neurotoxic compounds dropped significantly in depressed patients after they were treated with the antidepressant escitalopram (Lexapro).... Read more »
Halaris, A., Myint, A., Savant, V., Meresh, E., Lim, E., Guillemin, G., Hoppensteadt, D., Fareed, J., & Sinacore, J. (2015) Does escitalopram reduce neurotoxicity in major depression?. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 118-126. DOI: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2015.04.026
A molecule from chili peppers can be modified to bind to a protein involved in cancer progression. How would a molecule similar to hot pepper spice be used to fight cancer?... Read more »
Elumalai N, Berg A, Rubner S, & Berg T. (2015) Phosphorylation of Capsaicinoid Derivatives Provides Highly Potent and Selective Inhibitors of the Transcription Factor STAT5b. ACS chemical biology. PMID: 26469307
Professor Meiering and her colleagues were able to incorporate both structure and function into the design process by using bioinformatics to leverage information from nature. They then analyzed what they made and measured how long it took for the folded, functional protein to unfold and breakdown... Read more »
Broom A, Ma SM, Xia K, Rafalia H, Trainor K, Colón W, Gosavi S, & Meiering EM. (2015) Designed protein reveals structural determinants of extreme kinetic stability. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 112(47), 14605-10. PMID: 26554002
Researchers at the University of Waterloo have discovered a new way to create designer proteins that have the potential to transform biotechnology and personalized medicines.
In a range of experiments Professor Elizabeth Meiering, in collaboration with colleagues from India and the United States, created a protein that can withstand a range of physiological and environmental conditions – a problem that has challenged chemists looking to create super stable, highly functional proteins.... Read more »
Broom, A., Ma, S., Xia, K., Rafalia, H., Trainor, K., Colon, W., Gosavi, S., & Meiering, E. (2015) Designed protein reveals structural determinants of extreme kinetic stability. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1510748112
The Wilson Center’s Synthetic Biology Project has released a short documentary on the growth of the do-it-yourself biology (DIYbio) movement as seen through a community DIYbio lab in Baltimore, Maryland. ... Read more »
The Wilson Center. (2015) The rise of do-it-yourself biology: A look at the Baltimore Underground Science Space. Synthetic Biology Project. info:other/Link
A recent study indicates that Antarctic sea ice is growing, but what about its long-term evolution? Read on to see what scientists have discovered about the Antarctic's future.... Read more »
Zwally JH et al. (2015) Mass gains of the Antarctic ice sheet exceed losses. Journal of Glaciology. DOI: 10.3189/2015JoG15J071
Do you write about peer-reviewed research in your blog? Use ResearchBlogging.org to make it easy for your readers — and others from around the world — to find your serious posts about academic research.
If you don't have a blog, you can still use our site to learn about fascinating developments in cutting-edge research from around the world.
Research Blogging is powered by SMG Technology.
To learn more, visit seedmediagroup.com.