Tag: "rio" at biology news

'Gene chips' research in cotton could lead to superior variety

COLLEGE STATION A technology that uses "gene chips," which can help analyze tens of thousands of different DNA elements in a cotton plant, could lead to cotton varieties with superior traits and improved fiber quality. ... ...Dr. Jeff Chen, a Texas Agricultural Experiment Station scientist, is working on a $5.7 million National Science Foundation project led by Thomas Osborn at the University o...

University of Alberta researcher looks for clues to mysterious disease

Few have heard of the degenerative, deadly disease called Ataxia-telangiectasia (A-T) but a University of Alberta researcher is hoping to provide clues to this mysterious disorder.... ...Dr. Shelagh Campbell, from the U of A's Department of Biological Sciences, is a basic researcher who studies how normal cell cycles are regulated, by analyzing genes that are responsible for repairing DNA damage...

Prion propagation: Avoiding the toxic oligomer

The key to any protein's function is its structure. Improperly folded proteins are normally destroyed. But in a wide range of diseases, including prion (from proteinaceous and infectious) diseases and neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson disease and Alzheimer disease, amyloid fibrils, or plaques--misshapen proteins that aggregate into characteristic ropelike configurations--accumulate in ti...

Former US Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt to speak at science symposium

(Spokane, WA) -- Bruce Babbitt, former U.S. Secretary of the Interior under President Clinton and former Governor of Arizona, will serve as the keynote speaker at the annual Environmental and Subsurface Science Symposium, hosted by the Inland Northwest Research Alliance (INRA). INRA is a coalition of eight northwestern research universities created to promote new opportunities for research and ed...

Prions act as stepping stones in evolution

When a protein misfolds, the results can be disastrous. An incorrect change in the molecule's shape can lead to diseases including Alzheimer's and Huntington's. But scientists have discovered that misfolded proteins can have a positive side in yeast, helping cells navigate the dicey current of natural selection by expressing a variety of hidden genetic traits. ...... What's more, at the center o...

Double-segment periodicity underlies 'odd' segment generation in centipedes

In studying the way groups of cells are patterned or arranged to form segments in the developing embryo, researchers have identified a developmental "rule" followed by centipedes and thereby helped to solve a well-known evolutionary puzzle....... Centipedes are a familiar group of arthropods characterized by a long body made up of individual segments, each with its own pair of legs. Despite their...

Italian research links diet with endometriosis risk

Women may be able to lower their risk of endometriosis by eating more fresh fruit and green vegetables. But, eating red meat and ham appears to increase their risk, according to a study published (Thursday 15 July) in Europe's leading reproductive medicine journal Human Reproduction . ...... The researchers, from Milan in Italy, have now called for a prospective study to investigate further the p...

Human periodontal ligament stem cells isolated for the first time

Scientists at the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR), one of the National Institutes of Health, and their colleagues have isolated human postnatal stem cells for the first time directly from the periodontal ligament, the fibrous, net-like tendon that holds our teeth in their sockets.... ...The scientists also say these cells have "tremendous potential" to regenerate...

Birds show superior listening skills

Being called a bird-brain might not be so bad, after all. ... ...Canadian researchers have shown that humans just aren't cut out to discern certain pitches like their feathered friends. Testing completed on humans, rats, and three different species of birds shows that the birds--even ones that have been raised in isolation--are better at identifying, classifying, and memorizing absolute pitches t...

Endometriosis: Could angiostatic therapy be the new treatment of the future?

Berlin, Germany: Chemicals that inhibit the development of new blood vessels could prove to be a new way of treating endometriosis, according to research from The Netherlands and the USA presented today (Monday 28 June) at the 20th annual meeting of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology....... However, the researchers warned that the work is still at an early stage, with the c...

Microbes found in Mayan ruins may deteriorate stone from inside out

NEW ORLEANS May 27, 2004 Researchers from Havard University have discovered the presence of a previously unidentified microbial community inside the porous stone of the Maya ruins in Mexico that may be capable of causing rapid deterioration of these sites. They present their findings at the 104th General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology. ......"The presence of a previously unde...

Mysterious beach closures may be linked to contaminated groundwater, study finds

Every summer, coastal communities from Maine to California are forced to temporarily close some of their most popular beaches because of unsafe levels of bacteria in the water. Typically, these sudden bacterial blooms disappear, only to return without warning later in the season. In many cases, health officials are unable to pinpoint the cause of the contamination, leading frustrated beachgoers t...

IU and Purdue scientists to answer questions about Brood X periodical cicadas

Indiana University and Purdue University scientists will discuss the economic impact, biology, geographical distribution and control of Brood X periodical cicadas, which are scheduled to emerge from the ground in May (2004). These large, winged insects appear in Indiana, and elsewhere, every 17 years. ... ...Brood X cicadas, expected to emerge in the region between mid- to late-May, have develo...

Researchers make major gain in understanding how prions jump species

CLEVELAND Researchers at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine have taken a major step towards understanding how abnormal prion proteins, the suspected cause of mad cow and related diseases, change shape to jump from one animal species to another. In test tube experiments, they were able to make human prion proteins exhibit characteristics of mouse prions or hamster prions through...

Artificial prions created

The culprit behind mad cow disease, a.k.a. bovine spongiform encephalopathy, is the most infamous mammalian form of prions. Prions are misfolded proteins that are capable of growing, replicating, and being passed on to daughter cells - that is, they are by themselves heritable. Beyond their disease manifestation, prions also occur naturally in some organisms (such as yeast) and may play importa...

Experiments establish 'protein-only' nature of prion infections

Two independent research groups have established conclusively that prions are proteins, and that they do not depend on genes or other factors for transmission of their traits. According to the scientists, the studies answer a nagging question that had raised doubts among some researchers about the validity of the so-called "protein-only" hypothesis of prion infectivity. ...Scientists have grapple...

'Protein-only' prions confirmed in FSU yeast study

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.--A key discovery about how prions -- mysterious bits of protein thought to be the cause of mad cow disease and similar brain disorders -- infect healthy cells is being hailed by scientists as a breakthrough in the quest to understand the role of these proteins in neurological diseases. ... The findings by two Florida State University scientists are described in the March 18 issu...

Ontario researchers see increase in taste and odour-causing algae problems

(Kingston, ON) Ninety per cent of the lakes surveyed in a new study of Ontario's "cottage country" north of Toronto have seen a significant rise in taste and odour-causing algae most dramatically in the past 20 years, the researchers report. ......One of the most frequent complaints voiced by cottagers to local officials is that water in their lakes periodically tastes or smells bad. ......A co...

Improved medical treatment of serious heart problems focus of UH-led group

HOUSTON, Feb. 16, 2004 Suncica Canic, University of Houston mathematics professor, and her research group are presenting new findings related to the medical treatment of two serious heart problems at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) annual meeting in Seattle at 8 a.m. P.S.T., Monday, Feb. 16. ... ...The main goal of her work is to help cardiologists gain deeper ins...

The Lions of Tsavo: Exploring the Legacy of Africa's Notorious Man-eaters

CHICAGOThe very day that the first team of volunteer conservationists joined Dr. Patterson in Kenya to study the notorious Tsavo lions, a lion was heard roaring at the foot of their camp. ...Nevertheless, the volunteers persevered, and others followed. Good thing. Such volunteers are the eyes and ears of Dr. Patterson's research, the first thorough scientific project aimed at understanding the...

Bacteriophage genomics approach to antimicrobial drug discovery published in Nature Biotechnology

MONTREAL, CANADA (January 12, 2004): Identifying the targets that bacterial viruses, or phages, use to halt bacterial growth and then screening against those targets for small molecule inhibitors that attack the same targets provides a unique platform for the discovery of novel antibiotics. Researchers from Montreal-based PhageTech, Inc. describe in the February issue of Nature Biotechnology this...

Enzyme fully degrades mad cow disease prion

Research by North Carolina State University scientists, in conjunction with scientists from the Netherlands and BioResource International, an NC State spin-off biotechnology company, has shown that, under proper conditions, an enzyme can fully degrade the prion or protein particle believed to be responsible for mad cow disease and other related animal and human diseases....... These transmissib...

Combining various magnetic resonance imaging techniques may help improve breast cancer detection

Researchers at Johns Hopkins say that combining various types of magnetic resonance (MR) imaging techniques more accurately sorts cancers from benign masses in breast tissues than any single imaging techniques. Their findings are presented in the October issue of Radiology. ...Magnetic resonance imaging scanners can be calibrated to take images that highlight a specific type of human tissue. F...

Fox Chase Cancer Center researcher develops new model for studying prions mad cow disease

PHILADELPHIA--Fox Chase Cancer Center researchers and their colleagues in Japan and San Francisco have obtained new insight into the molecular structure of prion particles responsible for mad cow disease and other degenerative neurological disorders. In new research to be published in this week's Online Early Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences ( ), Fox Chase biophysic...

Cognitive performance influenced by gene for prion protein (also affected by mad cow disease)

Cognitive abilities are influenced by an interplay of genes and environment. With regard to the genetic component, multiple genes are assumed to be responsible for interindividual variation in cognitive abilities. Despite tremulous progress in molecular genetics, little is known about specific genes that contribute to this complex behavior. In an attempt to further delineate the genetic component...

Mussel researcher awarded Meritorious Service Award by the U.S. Department of the Interior

Blacksburg Richard J. Neves, professor of fisheries and wildlife science at Virginia Tech, was awarded the Meritorious Service Award from the U. S. Department of the Interior in recognition of his outstanding contributions to the U.S. Geological Survey in the conservation of freshwater mussels in North America. ...... Previously honored by The Nature Conservancy for his fruitful pioneering effor...

Dartmouth study advances prion disease research

Hanover, NH Adding to the paradox of prion diseases, Dartmouth Medical School researchers have discovered that RNA plays a role in converting a normal prion protein into a mutant that leads to mad cow disease and other fatal brain illnesses. ... ...Their study, reported in the Oct. 16 issue of Nature, provides important clues to understanding the role of prions, unorthodox infectious agents who...

Chemical change may help predict seriousness and course of some cancer

COLUMBUS, Ohio A pattern produced by a chemical change that turns off genes in tumor cells may help predict the seriousness of a particular cancer, and perhaps its outcome....... The study by researchers at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute examined how a chemical change known as methylation spreads fro...

Study offers genetic clues to causes of mysterious skin disease

People suffering from scleroderma, a debilitating, sometimes-fatal skin disease, may one day benefit from a study that gives doctors their first look at the genes behind the poorly understood disease....... A team of scientists including Princeton geneticist David Botstein and led by his postdoctoral fellow Michael Whitfield (now at Dartmouth) found more than 2,700 genes with an unusual level of...

Study shows prions stick around in certain soils

MADISON - Dirt may help scientists answer a question that has baffled them for decades: How does chronic wasting disease (CWD) in deer and elk spread from animal to animal?...... By turning to the land, University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers show that prions - infectious proteins considered to be at the root of the disease - literally stick to some soil types, suggesting that the landscape m...

New study of Europa may explain mysterious ice domes, places to search for evidence of life

A new University of Colorado at Boulder study of Jupiter's moon Europa may help explain the origin of the giant ice domes peppering its surface and the implications for discovering evidence of past or present life forms there.... ...Assistant Professor Robert Pappalardo and doctoral student Amy Barr previously believed the mysterious domes may be formed by blobs of ice from the interior of the fr...

Tipping the balance of prion infectivity

Two important questions face biologists studying the infectious proteins called prions: What stops prions that infect one species from infecting another species and what causes the invisible transmission barrier between species to fail sometimes?...... , Howard Hughes Medical Institute researchers have shown how point mutations in prions -- which do not compromise their infectivity -- can neverth...

Borneo elephants: A high priority for conservation

A new study settles a long-standing dispute about the genesis of an endangered species. With scant fossil evidence supporting a prehistoric presence, scientists could not say for sure where Borneo's elephants came from. Did they descend from ancient prototypes of the Pleistocene era or from modern relatives introduced just 300500 years ago? That question, as Fernando et al. report in an article t...

Infants more vulnerable to serious brain injury from falling than previously thought

ARLINGTON, Va., Aug. 12, 2003 -- Babies are more vulnerable to serious head injury during a fall than had been previously thought, according to new research that may also begin to help child abuse investigators distinguish between accidental and intentional injury. ... ...Whitaker investigator Susan Margulies of the University of Pennsylvania found that rotational forces generated by a baby's hea...

Dengue infection more serious for elderly persons

Older people who become infected with the dengue virus are more likely to need hospitalization, are more likely to suffer more severe forms of the infection, and are more likely to die compared to any other age group except infants. The findings are a part of the first research study that analyzed the clinical manifestations of dengue infection among persons 65 and older. ... ...The findings are...

Swedish researchers link endometriosis with increased risk of some cancers

Madrid, Spain: Women with endometriosis have an increased risk of developing ovarian cancer, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, endocrine and brain cancers, a Swedish researcher told the annual meeting of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology today (Wednesday 2 July).... ...However, Dr Anna-Sofia Berglund said that since these were relatively rare cancers and the increase in the risk was...

Spanish fertility experts bring hope of avoiding serious complication of assisted reproduction

Madrid, Spain: Research by Spanish fertility experts is bringing new hope to women of avoiding a serious complication of assisted reproduction ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) .... ...In its severest form, which requires urgent medical treatment, the syndrome affects around 200 women a year in Spain and as many as 2,000 a year in Europe. OHSS occurs when a woman's ovaries go into overdri...

Seeking the cause of a mysterious whale disease

Ft. Pierce, FL On June 25, scientists will meet at HARBOR BRANCH Oceanographic Institution to study and discuss a deadly heart disease affecting pygmy and dwarf sperm whale populations. The workshop will bring together human and marine mammal researchers in an effort to better understand causes of the heart defect using medical techniques normally applied to humans.... ...Dr. Gregory Bossart, d...

Exposure to pollution before viral infection linked to more serious asthma attacks

Children with asthma at risk of viral infection from flu or the common cold could also be at an increased risk of severe asthma attacks if they have been exposed to nitrogen dioxide pollution from sources such as vehicle exhausts or gas cookers.... ...A link between exposure to the air pollutant nitrogen dioxide and respiratory disease has been suggested. Viral infections are the major cause of...

Researchers discover possible diagnosis, treatment, vaccine for mad cow, prion diseases

Research led by scientists at the U of T and Caprion Pharmaceuticals have uncovered the basis for a diagnostic, immunotherapy and vaccine, providing a way to detect and treat the brain-wasting damage of infectious prions like those found in mad cow disease and its human version, Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease....... Dr. Neil Cashman, a principal investigator at U of T's Centre for Research in Neurodeg...
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