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  • April 24, 2014
  • 05:13 PM
  • 2 views

April 24, 2014

by Erin Campbell in HighMag Blog

I’m still waiting for my miniaturizing spaceship* so I can dive into a cell with my dog and ride in the lamella of a crawling cell. Until then, I will gladly enjoy images like today’s, from the Lippincott-Schwartz lab. A cell’s shape can change for many reasons, including crawling, tissue regeneration, and cancer progression. Cell shape is dynamic, relying on temporal and spatial coordination of several processes. The three-dimensional nature of cell shape, however, presents a challenge........ Read more »

Burnette, D., Shao, L., Ott, C., Pasapera, A., Fischer, R., Baird, M., Der Loughian, C., Delanoe-Ayari, H., Paszek, M., Davidson, M.... (2014) A contractile and counterbalancing adhesion system controls the 3D shape of crawling cells. originally published in the Journal of Cell Biology, 205(1), 83-96. DOI: 10.1083/jcb.201311104  

  • April 24, 2014
  • 04:48 AM
  • 19 views

What You Need To Know About The New Ebola Outbreak

by Rebekah Morrow in United Academics

Recent outbreaks of Ebola virus in Guinea have made international news. Ebola virus was first identified in 1976 in the region that is now the Democratic Republic of the Congo in central Africa. The virus was named after the river near where it was found. Since 1976, there have been multiple outbreaks in central Africa, but this year is the first time that an outbreak has occurred as far west as Guinea and Sierra Leone.... Read more »

Groseth, A., Feldmann, H., & Strong, J. (2007) The ecology of Ebola virus. Trends in Microbiology, 15(9), 408-416. DOI: 10.1016/j.tim.2007.08.001  

Pettitt, J., Zeitlin, L., Kim, D., Working, C., Johnson, J., Bohorov, O., Bratcher, B., Hiatt, E., Hume, S., Johnson, A.... (2013) Therapeutic Intervention of Ebola Virus Infection in Rhesus Macaques with the MB-003 Monoclonal Antibody Cocktail. Science Translational Medicine, 5(199), 199-199. DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.3006608  

  • April 24, 2014
  • 04:35 AM
  • 21 views

As if you needed telling...

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"GI [gastrointestinal] dysfunction was prevalent in this cohort of children with ASD [autism spectrum disorders], observations consistent with the reports of parents and other clinicians". That was one of the conclusions reached by Victor Kang and colleagues [1] in their study looking at GI issues in cases of autism.Of course we've been here before... many times in fact, as autism research delivers more evidence that bowel issues are quite frequently over-represented in cases of autism........ Read more »

Kang V, Wagner GC, & Ming X. (2014) Gastrointestinal Dysfunction in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders. Autism research : official journal of the International Society for Autism Research. PMID: 24753336  

  • April 23, 2014
  • 09:36 AM
  • 39 views

Video Tip of the Week: Atlas of Cancer Signaling Networks

by Mary in OpenHelix

Last week I highlighted a software tool that lets you customize maps of molecular interactions, and navigate around at various resolutions to explore. It’s called NaviCell, and it seems to offer a lot of opportunity for folks to develop helpful maps related to their research. This week I’m going to note that this same team […]... Read more »

Kuperstein Inna, Cohen David PA, Pook Stuart, Viara Eric, Calzone Laurence, Barillot Emmanuel, & Zinovyev Andrei. (2013) NaviCell: a web-based environment for navigation, curation and maintenance of large molecular interaction maps. BMC Systems Biology, 7(1), 100. DOI: 10.1186/1752-0509-7-100  

  • April 23, 2014
  • 08:25 AM
  • 27 views

Chili Peppers Run Hot And Cold

by Mark Lasbury in As Many Exceptions As Rules

Hot peppers are hot because their capsaicin binds to the TRPV1 heat sensing ion channel. Agonists of TRPV1 can lead to a hypothermia, while antagonists result in a hyperthermia. Normally these would be poor outcomes, but there are particular instances that new researchs are showing to be beneficial. Brown adipose tissue is promoted by TRPV1 agonists, and studies are showing that capsaicin can hinder formation of white adipose tissue. Likewise, agonists of TRPV1 can induce a protective hypothermi........ Read more »

Yoneshiro T, Aita S, Matsushita M, Kayahara T, Kameya T, Kawai Y, Iwanaga T, & Saito M. (2013) Recruited brown adipose tissue as an antiobesity agent in humans. The Journal of clinical investigation, 123(8), 3404-8. PMID: 23867622  

Feng Z, Hai-Ning Y, Xiao-Man C, Zun-Chen W, Sheng-Rong S, & Das UN. (2014) Effect of yellow capsicum extract on proliferation and differentiation of 3T3-L1 preadipocytes. Nutrition (Burbank, Los Angeles County, Calif.), 30(3), 319-25. PMID: 24296036  

Muzzi M, Felici R, Cavone L, Gerace E, Minassi A, Appendino G, Moroni F, & Chiarugi A. (2012) Ischemic neuroprotection by TRPV1 receptor-induced hypothermia. Journal of cerebral blood flow and metabolism : official journal of the International Society of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism, 32(6), 978-82. PMID: 22434066  

  • April 23, 2014
  • 04:25 AM
  • 33 views

Phenylalanine and schizophrenia: new directions for intervention?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

As regular readers might already have noticed, amino acids are a bit of a obsession of mine on this blog. Out of all of them - and there are quite a few - I'm particularly interested in the aromatic amino acids and the their various connections to health and wellbeing. I've talked at length about some of the proposed connections made between amino acids such as tryptophan, tyrosine and phenylalanine to all manner of conditions but specifically with the autism spectrum in mind (see here).The conv........ Read more »

Olaoluwa Okusaga, Olesja Muravitskaja, Dietmar Fuchs, Ayesha Ashraf, Sarah Hinman, Ina Giegling, Annette M. Hartmann, Bettina Konte, Marion Friedl, Jason Schiffman.... (2014) Elevated Levels of Plasma Phenylalanine in Schizophrenia: A Guanosine Triphosphate Cyclohydrolase-1 Metabolic Pathway Abnormality?. PLoS ONE. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0085945  

  • April 22, 2014
  • 10:22 AM
  • 32 views

Frogs Survive Subzero Temperatures by Living as Ice Cubes

by Elizabeth Preston in Inkfish

No matter how rough a winter you think you had, it was nothing compared to what a wood frog survives every year. Some of these little amphibians are still waiting for spring, when they’ll thaw out and turn from frog-shaped blocks of ice back into animals. Recently, scientists took a close look at wood frogs […]The post Frogs Survive Subzero Temperatures by Living as Ice Cubes appeared first on Inkfish.... Read more »

Larson DJ, Middle L, Vu H, Zhang W, Serianni AS, Duman J, & Barnes BM. (2014) Wood frog adaptations to overwintering in Alaska: New limits to freezing tolerance. The Journal of experimental biology. PMID: 24737762  

  • April 21, 2014
  • 03:00 PM
  • 41 views

EASTER CHOCOLATE CRAVINGS: THE POWER OF POLYPHENOLS

by Alex Giffen in Antisense Science

The health benefits of chocolate explained this Easter... Read more »

Katz, D., Doughty, K., & Ali, A. (2011) Cocoa and Chocolate in Human Health and Disease. Antioxidants , 15(10), 2779-2811. DOI: 10.1089/ars.2010.3697  

Franco R, Oñatibia-Astibia A, & Martínez-Pinilla E. (2013) Health benefits of methylxanthines in cacao and chocolate. Nutrients, 5(10), 4159-73. PMID: 24145871  

Selmi C, Cocchi CA, Lanfredini M, Keen CL, & Gershwin ME. (2008) Chocolate at heart: the anti-inflammatory impact of cocoa flavanols. Molecular nutrition , 52(11), 1340-8. PMID: 18991246  

Ellam S, & Williamson G. (2013) Cocoa and human health. Annual review of nutrition, 105-28. PMID: 23642199  

  • April 21, 2014
  • 05:15 AM
  • 45 views

Lathosterolosis, cholesterol and autism?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

Although intrigued by the findings reported by Pier Luigi Calvo and colleagues [1] describing a "unique case" potentially linking liver functions and cognitive functions with a hat-tip to the presentation of autistic behaviours, I'll readily admit that I am way out of my comfort and competence zones when discussing this paper so please be ready with that pinch of salt.How do you like your eggs in the morning? @ Wikipedia As per what the paper and accompanying press release (see he........ Read more »

Calvo, P., Brunati, A., Spada, M., Romagnoli, R., Corso, G., Parenti, G., Rossi, M., Baldi, M., Carbonaro, G., David, E.... (2014) Liver Transplantation in Defects of Cholesterol Biosynthesis: The Case of Lathosterolosis. American Journal of Transplantation. DOI: 10.1111/ajt.12645  

  • April 20, 2014
  • 11:45 PM
  • 53 views

Cross-validation in finance, psychology, and political science

by Artem Kaznatcheev in Evolutionary Games Group

A large chunk of machine learning (although not all of it) is concerned with predictive modeling, usually in the form of designing an algorithm that takes in some data set and returns an algorithm (or sometimes, a description of an algorithm) for making predictions based on future data. In terminology more friendly to the philosophy […]... Read more »

  • April 20, 2014
  • 03:34 PM
  • 102 views

420: How Marijuana Messes With the Brain

by Alexis Delanoir in How to Paint Your Panda

Cannabis use has previously been associated with cognitive impairment, and Smith et al. (2013) showed that heavy marijuana use was associated with poor working memory and brain abnormalities. Now, Gilman et al. (2014) propose that even casual use of marijuana is associated with such negative effects. Is this an issue of correlation/causation, of funding bias, or are the world's weed smokers really in neurological danger? In this post, in celebration of 4/20, I provide context for the recent........ Read more »

Meier, M., Caspi, A., Ambler, A., Harrington, H., Houts, R., Keefe, R., McDonald, K., Ward, A., Poulton, R., & Moffitt, T. (2012) Persistent cannabis users show neuropsychological decline from childhood to midlife. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 109(40). DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1206820109  

  • April 20, 2014
  • 09:31 AM
  • 80 views

Was Lamarck right after all? A look at epigenetic inheritance

by EE Giorgi in CHIMERAS

Myths © EEGFrom the Wikipedia definition of epigenetics: "In biology, and specifically genetics, epigenetics is the study of heritable changes in gene activity that are not caused by changes in the DNA sequence."Wait a minute... how can we inherit anything that's not encoded in the DNA? All the information we inherit from our parents is coded in the DNA ... Right?That's correct. However, there's something very important that goes hand in hand with the information contained in the genes: how and........ Read more »

  • April 19, 2014
  • 12:51 PM
  • 75 views

First female “penis” discovered in cave-dwelling insects

by beredim in Strange Animals

Image showing the female penis of N. auroraCredit: Current Biology, Yoshizawa et al.Kingdom: AnimaliaPhylum: ArthropodaClass: InsectaOrder: PsocopteraFamily: PrionoglarididaeGenus: NeotroglaSpecies: N. aurora, N. curvet and 2 otherThis Thursday, researchers announced that they have discovered several insect species that display the "world's first" known instance of gender-reversed genitalia. In simple words, they have found 4 insect species with female... "penises." and male "vaginae"!........ Read more »

  • April 19, 2014
  • 07:34 AM
  • 133 views

Typing Method for Cryptosporidium Meleagridis

by Christen Rune Stensvold in Christen Rune Stensvold

You can read about the development and use of a highly applicable typing method for C. meleagridis isolates in a newly published paper in Journal of Clinical Microbiology.... Read more »

  • April 19, 2014
  • 07:34 AM
  • 155 views

Typing Method for Cryptosporidium Meleagridis

by Christen Rune Stensvold in Blastocystis Parasite Blog

You can read about the development and use of a highly applicable typing method for C. meleagridis isolates in a newly published paper in Journal of Clinical Microbiology.... Read more »

  • April 17, 2014
  • 11:02 PM
  • 179 views

Dear CNRS: That mouse study did not "confirm" the neurobiological origin of ADHD in humans

by in Neuroscientifically Challenged

Late last week the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS - the acronym is based on the French translation) put out a press release describing a study conducted through a collaboration between several of its researchers and scientists from The University of Strasbourg. CNRS is a large (30,000+ employees), government-run research institution in France. It is the largest research organization in Europe, and is responsible for about 1/2 of the French scientific papers published annual........ Read more »

  • April 17, 2014
  • 09:39 AM
  • 73 views

What’s the Answer? (new Biostars interface)

by Mary in OpenHelix

BioStars is a site for asking, answering and discussing bioinformatics questions and issues. We are members of the community and find it very useful. Often questions and answers arise at BioStars that are germane to our readers (end users of genomics resources). Every Thursday we will be highlighting one of those items or discussions here […]... Read more »

Parnell Laurence D., Lindenbaum Pierre, Shameer Khader, Dall'Olio Giovanni Marco, Swan Daniel C., Jensen Lars Juhl, Cockell Simon J., Pedersen Brent S., Mangan Mary E., & Miller Christopher A. (2011) BioStar: An Online Question . PLoS Computational Biology, 7(10). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1002216.g002  

  • April 17, 2014
  • 09:26 AM
  • 60 views

April 17, 2014

by Erin Campbell in HighMag Blog

The endoplasmic reticulum and humans have quite a bit in common. Both are dynamic and constantly changing, but both also need something to ground and stabilize them. Maybe I’m reading too much into the beauty of the ER, but the image today is from a paper that only fuels my fascination. The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is a large, complex membrane-bound organelle that spreads throughout the cell and hosts the synthesis, folding, and sorting of membrane and secretory proteins. This network is ........ Read more »

Joensuu, M., Belevich, I., Ramo, O., Nevzorov, I., Vihinen, H., Puhka, M., Witkos, T., Lowe, M., Vartiainen, M., & Jokitalo, E. (2014) ER sheet persistence is coupled to myosin 1c-regulated dynamic actin filament arrays. Molecular Biology of the Cell, 25(7), 1111-1126. DOI: 10.1091/mbc.E13-12-0712  

  • April 17, 2014
  • 07:49 AM
  • 99 views

Cannabis use and structural changes in the brain

by Robb Hollis in Antisense Science

“One or two spliffs a week could mess up your brain” – Metro, 16 April 2014

Spark your interest? This headline caught the eyes of the Antisense team, so we chased down the original article in the Journal of Neuroscience and took a closer look!

Cannabis is the most commonly used illegal drug in the US, and the ‘casual use’ culture surrounding marijuana is a subject of great debate and controversy, with arguments for drug legalisation making their way into our ........ Read more »

  • April 17, 2014
  • 04:31 AM
  • 55 views

Mitochondrial dysfunction as a neurobiological subtype of autism

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The paper by Suzanne Goh and colleagues [1] reporting on "a possible neurobiological subtype of mitochondrial dysfunction in ASD [autism spectrum disorder]" is a worthy addition to the research roll call which has graced this blog down the years. Based on the analysis of brain lactate levels - a potential marker of mitochondrial dysfunction - via the analysis of lactate doublets on brain magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging (MRSI), authors picked up a significantly higher rate of l........ Read more »

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