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A nucleotide change could initiate fragile X syndrome

9/1/2014
Researchers reveal how the alteration of a single nucleotidethe basic building block of DNAcould initiate fragile X syndrome, the most common inherited form of intellectual disability. The study appears in The Journal of Cell Biology . Fragile X syndrome is caused by a defect in a g... [Comments]A nucleotide change could initiate fragile X syndrome

Scientists call for investigation of mysterious cloud-like collections in cells

9/1/2014
WASHINGTON About 50 years ago, electron microscopy revealed the presence of tiny blob-like structures that form inside cells, move around and disappear. But scientists still don't know what they do even though these shifting cloud-like collections of proteins are believed to be crucial to the life of a cell, and therefore could offer a new approach to disease treatment. In the Journal of... [Comments]

Zooming in for a safe flight

9/1/2014
As nocturnal animals, bats are perfectly adapted to a life without light. They emit echolocation sounds and use the delay between the reflected echoes to measure distance to obstacles or prey. In their brains, they have a spatial map representing different echo delays. A study carried out by researchers at Technische Universitt Mnchen (TUM) has shown for the first time that this map dynamicall... [Comments]

Week-long meeting on naming algae, fungi, and plants recorded for posterity

9/1/2014
The week-long discussions and decisions of the Nomenclature Section of the XVIII International Botanical Congress took place in Melbourne, Australia in July 2011. This meeting is held every six years and it is where the world's premier experts on the rules for naming algae, fungi and plant... [Comments]Week-long meeting on naming algae, fungi, and plants recorded for posterity

Sugar substance 'kills' good HDL cholesterol, new research finds

8/31/2014
Scientists at the University of Warwick have discovered that 'good' cholesterol is turned 'bad' by a sugar-derived substance. The substance, methylglyoxal - MG, was found to damage 'good' HDL cholesterol, which removes excess levels of bad cholesterol from the body. Low levels of... [Comments]Sugar substance 'kills' good HDL cholesterol, new research finds

New tuberculosis blood test in children is reliable and highly specific

8/31/2014
A new blood test provides a fast and accurate tool to diagnose tuberculosis in children, a new proof-of-concept study shows. The newly developed test (TAM-TB assay) is the first reliable immunodiagnostic assay to detect active tuberculosis in children. The test features excellent specificity, a similar sensitivity as culture tests in combination with speed of a blood test. The promising findin... [Comments]

Scientists develop 'electronic nose' for rapid detection of C. diff infection

8/31/2014
A fast-sensitive "electronic-nose" for sniffing the highly infectious bacteria C. diff , that causes diarrhoea, temperature and stomach cramps, has been developed by a team at the University of Leicester. Using a mass spectrometer, the research team has demonstrated that it is possible... [Comments]Scientists develop 'electronic nose' for rapid detection of C. diff infection

A new synthetic amino acid for an emerging class of drugs

8/31/2014
One of the greatest challenges in modern medicine is developing drugs that are highly effective against a target, but with minimal toxicity and side-effects to the patient. Such properties are directly related to the 3D structure of the drug molecule. Ideally, the drug should have a shape that is perfectly complementary to a disease-causing target, so that it binds it with high specificity. Pu... [Comments]

Discovery reveals how bacteria distinguish harmful vs. helpful viruses

8/31/2014
When they are not busy attacking us, germs go after each other. But when viruses invade bacteria, it doesn't always spell disaster for the infected microbes: Sometimes viruses actually carry helpful genes that a bacterium can harness to, say, expand its diet or better attack its own hosts.... [Comments]Discovery reveals how bacteria distinguish harmful vs. helpful viruses

Antarctic sea-level rising faster than global rate

8/31/2014
A new study of satellite data from the last 19 years reveals that fresh water from melting glaciers has caused the sea-level around the coast of Antarctica to rise by 2cm more than the global average of 6cm. Researchers at the University of Southampton detected the rapid rise in sea-level... [Comments]Antarctic sea-level rising faster than global rate

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