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A group of international scientists have developed a new method to study   Ebola virus in wildlife. The Wildlife Conservation Society-led research   describes the use of fecal samples from wild great apes to identify populations likely to have been expo

Game Changer for Improving Understanding of Ebola and Great Apes

September 19, 2014 | by Wildlife Conservation Society | Comments

A group of international scientists have developed a new method to study Ebola virus in wildlife. The Wildlife Conservation Society-led research describes the use of fecal samples from wild great apes to identify populations likely to have been exposed to the virus. 

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Researchers report the discovery of a novel mechanism in the brain involved in the formation of memory and learning. The discovery could have therapeutic ramifications for conditions including dementia, age-related memory loss or even post-traumatic stres

Novel Mechanism Involved in Memory Discovered in Mice

September 19, 2014 8:39 am | by Univ. of Alabama at Birmingham | Comments

Researchers report the discovery of a novel mechanism in the brain involved in the formation of memory and learning. The discovery could have therapeutic ramifications for conditions including dementia, age-related memory loss or even post-traumatic stress disorder.

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Scientists have discovered that knocking out the gene NrCAM leads to an increase of dendritic spines on excitatory pyramidal cells in the brains of mammals. Other studies have confirmed that the overabundance of dendritic spines on this type of brain cell

Gene in Mice Linked to Increased Dendritic Spines – a Sign of Autism

September 18, 2014 1:25 pm | by Univ. of North Carolina School of Medicine | Comments

Scientists have discovered that knocking out the gene NrCAM leads to an increase of dendritic spines on excitatory pyramidal cells in the brains of mammals. Other studies have confirmed that the overabundance of dendritic spines on this type of brain cell allows for too many synaptic connections to form between neurons — a phenomenon strongly linked to autism.

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Confidence is a familiar feeling for all of us. But scientists have found that confidence is more than an emotion. It is a measureable quantity, an objective prediction that informs our decisions. In fact, the researchers have pinpointed a brain r

Neural Basis of Confidence in the Rat Brain Uncovered

September 18, 2014 1:05 pm | by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory | Comments

Confidence is a familiar feeling for all of us. But scientists have found that confidence is more than an emotion. It is a measureable quantity, an objective prediction that informs our decisions. In fact, the researchers have pinpointed a brain region in rats whose function is required to for the animals to express confidence in their decisions.

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British scientists say a former nurse has become the first person in the country to receive an experimental Ebola vaccine in an early trial to test its safety. The vaccine is meant to spark the immune system's production of Ebola antibodies. It does not c

Volunteer Gets Experimental Ebola Vaccine

September 18, 2014 12:44 pm | by Associated Press | Comments

British scientists say a former nurse has become the first person in the country to receive an experimental Ebola vaccine in an early trial to test its safety. The vaccine is meant to spark the immune system's production of Ebola antibodies. It does not contain any infectious material and shouldn't trigger an Ebola infection, researchers said.

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The most common type of hospital-associated infection may be preventable with a vaccine, new research in mice suggests. The experimental vaccine prevented urinary tract infections associated with catheters, the tubes used in hospitals and other care facil

In Mice, Vaccine Stops Urinary Tract Infections Linked to Catheters

September 18, 2014 12:23 pm | by Michael Purdy, Washington Univ. at St. Louis | Comments

The most common type of hospital-associated infection may be preventable with a vaccine, new research in mice suggests. The experimental vaccine prevented urinary tract infections associated with catheters, the tubes used in hospitals and other care facilities to drain urine from a patient’s bladder.

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Neuroscientists have discovered the “molecular brakes” that time the generation of important cells in the inner ear cochleas of mice. These “hair cells” translate sound waves into electrical signals that are carried to the brain and are interpreted as sou

Proteins Ensure Right Development of Inner Ear 'Hair Cells' in Mice

September 17, 2014 3:44 pm | by Johns Hopkins Medicine | Comments

Neuroscientists have discovered the “molecular brakes” that time the generation of important cells in the inner ear cochleas of mice. These “hair cells” translate sound waves into electrical signals that are carried to the brain and are interpreted as sounds. If the arrangement of the cells is disordered, hearing is impaired.

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Mutations in the human retinoblastoma protein gene are a leading cause of eye cancer. Now, scientists have turned to fruit fly eyes to unlock the secrets of this important cancer gene.

Abnormal Properties of Cancer Protein Revealed in Fly Eyes

September 17, 2014 2:20 pm | by Michigan State Univ. | Comments

Mutations in the human retinoblastoma protein gene are a leading cause of eye cancer. Now, scientists have turned to fruit fly eyes to unlock the secrets of this important cancer gene.                   

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Artificial sweeteners, promoted as aids to weight loss and diabetes   prevention, could actually hasten the development of glucose intolerance and   metabolic disease; and they do it in a surprising way: by changing the composition and function of the g

Artificial Sweeteners Cause Abnormal Glucose Metabolism in Mice

September 17, 2014 1:50 pm | by Weizmann Institute of Science | Comments

Artificial sweeteners, promoted as aids to weight loss and diabetes prevention, could actually hasten the development of glucose intolerance and metabolic disease; and they do it in a surprising way: by changing the composition and function of the gut microbiota — the substantial population of bacteria residing in our intestines.

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Aging of insulin-secreting cells is coupled to a progressive decline in signal transduction and insulin release, according to a recent study. The finding provides a new molecular mechanism underlying age-related impairment of insulin-producing cells and d

Mechanism behind Age-dependent Diabetes Discovered in Mice

September 17, 2014 1:32 pm | by Karolinska Institutet | Comments

Aging of insulin-secreting cells is coupled to a progressive decline in signal transduction and insulin release, according to a recent study. The finding provides a new molecular mechanism underlying age-related impairment of insulin-producing cells and diabetes.

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The latest collection of CASIS-sponsored research, termed Advancing Research Knowledge (ARK)-2, centers heavily on life sciences. Investigations destined for the space station’s national laboratory include the Bone Densitometer, which will be the first X-

CASIS SpaceX Launch to Test Rodent Bone Density on Space Station

September 17, 2014 1:02 pm | by Austin Jordan, NASA/Johnson Space Center | Comments

The latest collection of CASIS-sponsored research, termed Advancing Research Knowledge (ARK)-2, centers heavily on life sciences. Investigations destined for the space station’s national laboratory include the Bone Densitometer, which will be the first X-ray machine installed on the space station. A joint project between CASIS, NASA and Techshot, the facility will be instrumental in conducting rodent research on station.

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Researchers have shown that the human version of a gene called Foxp2 makes it easier to transform new experiences into routine procedures. When they engineered mice to express humanized Foxp2, the mice learned to run a maze much more quickly than normal m

Human Speech Gene Makes Mice Smarter

September 16, 2014 2:48 pm | by Anne Trafton, MIT | Comments

Researchers have shown that the human version of a gene called Foxp2 makes it easier to transform new experiences into routine procedures. When they engineered mice to express humanized Foxp2, the mice learned to run a maze much more quickly than normal mice.

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Nanotechnology researchers have successfully engineered synthetic materials which encouraged bone formation in sheep. The advancement means the successful use of synthetic materials in bone grafts for human patients is a step closer. The material could al

Nano Engineering Advances Bone-forming Material in Sheep

September 16, 2014 2:01 pm | by Murdock Univ. | Comments

Nanotechnology researchers have successfully engineered synthetic materials which encouraged bone formation in sheep. The advancement means the successful use of synthetic materials in bone grafts for human patients is a step closer. The material could also have potential future applications in fracture repair and reconstructive surgery.

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Researchers have made a recent breakthrough with the development of a new compound found to be highly effective in animal models of spinal muscular atrophy, a neurodegenerative disease that causes muscles to weaken over time.

New Drug Effective for Spinal Muscular Atrophy in Mice

September 16, 2014 1:49 pm | by Sarah Clinton, Univ. of Missouri | Comments

Researchers have made a recent breakthrough with the development of a new compound found to be highly effective in animal models of spinal muscular atrophy, a neurodegenerative disease that causes muscles to weaken over time.       

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Thoughts of the family tree may not be uppermost in the mind of a person   suffering from a slipped disc, but those spinal discs provide a window into our evolutionary past.

From Worm Muscle to Spinal Discs

September 16, 2014 1:39 pm | by Sonia Furtado Neves, EMBL | Comments

Thoughts of the family tree may not be uppermost in the mind of a person suffering from a slipped disc, but those spinal discs provide a window into our evolutionary past.                       

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A team set out to better understand the molecular pathways involved in heart failure. The researchers discovered a group of long non-coding RNAs specific to heart muscle. These particular RNA pieces came from a genetic region that normally codes for myosi

Molecule Protects against Heart Failure in Mice

September 15, 2014 2:17 pm | by Carol Torgan, NIH | Comments

A team set out to better understand the molecular pathways involved in heart failure. The researchers discovered a group of long non-coding RNAs specific to heart muscle. These particular RNA pieces came from a genetic region that normally codes for myosin heavy chain proteins, which are abundant in heart tissue. Thus, the team named them Myheart.

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