News Archive

The government shutdown is likely to mean an early death for thousands of mice used in research on diseases such as diabetes, cancer and Alzheimer's.

Federal research centers including the National Institutes of Health will have to kill some mice to avoid overcrowding, researchers say. Others will die because it is impossible to maintain certain lines of genetically altered mice without constant monitoring by scientists. And most federal scientists have been banned from their own labs since Oct. 1.

Friday, October 11, 2013 - 15:49

The 2013 Nobel Prize honours three scientists who have solved the mystery of how the cell organizes its transport system.

Monday, October 7, 2013 - 15:56

Cats may hold a key to developing an HIV vaccine for people, a new study suggests. Researchers found that a protein from the virus that causes AIDS in cats triggered an immune response in blood from HIV-infected people. The virus that causes AIDS in people is called the human immunodeficiency virus while the one that affects cats is called the feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV).

Friday, October 4, 2013 - 14:29

Researchers from the University Göttingen Institute of Veterinary Medicine and Chronix Biomedical have published a new study exploring the genetic hallmarks of canine mammary cancer. Appearing in the peer-reviewed journal PLOS ONE, the paper identifies important similarities and differences between human and canine breast tumors, providing a strong platform for future research using the canine model system.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013 - 15:00

AICR, the Scottish cancer research charity, has awarded biologists from the University of Aberdeen a grant of over £200,000 to analyse if IgNAR – a special antibody found only in sharks – can be used to inhibit the growth of cancer cells.

Monday, September 30, 2013 - 15:39

Researchers at the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute have developed a new large animal model - the pig- to study how the immune system interacts with the stomach bacterium Helicobacter pylori, the leading cause of peptic ulcer disease.

Thursday, September 26, 2013 - 16:33

Obsessive compulsive disorder can ruin lives, but research with animals is giving scientists fresh hope for managing the symptoms.

Monday, September 23, 2013 - 16:19

Using salt-sniffing roundworms, Salk scientists help explain how the nervous system processes sensory information.

Friday, September 13, 2013 - 15:18


Scientists are one step closer to developing a dengue drug and vaccine that will cover all four types of the mosquito-borne disease. There are currently no approved vaccines for dengue.

Researchers at the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART) have developed a humanised mouse model which will expedite the ongoing search for an effective drug or vaccine for the infection.


Thursday, September 12, 2013 - 15:36

Scientists recently announced that a combination of two well-known antiviral drugs that protect monkeys against MERS could potentially be used to save humans from the lethal disease.

Monday, September 9, 2013 - 14:21

The trillions of bacteria that live in the gut — helping digest foods, making some vitamins, making amino acids — may help determine if a person is fat or thin. Dr. Jeffrey I. Gordon and Vanessa K. Ridaura are two members of a scientific team whose research shows a connection between human gut bacteria and obesity. The evidence is from a novel experiment involving mice and humans that is part of a growing fascination with gut bacteria and their role in health and diseases like irritable bowel syndrome and Crohn’s disease. In this case, the focus was on obesity. Researchers found pairs of human twins in which one was obese and the other lean. They transferred gut bacteria from these twins into mice and watched what happened. The mice with bacteria from fat twins grew fat; those that got bacteria from lean twins stayed lean.

Friday, September 6, 2013 - 12:52

According to new research on epilepsy, zebrafish have certainly earned their stripes. Results of a study in Nature Communications suggest that zebrafish carrying a specific mutation may help researchers discover treatments for Dravet syndrome (DS), a severe form of pediatric epilepsy that results in drug-resistant seizures and developmental delays.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013 - 16:21

University of Iowa researchers say that the common fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, is an ideal model to study hearing loss in humans caused by loud noise. The reason: The molecular underpinnings to its hearing are roughly the same as with people.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013 - 16:20

This summer, Duke welcomed two new members to its community—each weighing no more than a handful of paperclips and standing less than three and a half centimeters tall.

Filbert and his sister Scuppernong, twin grey mouse lemurs, were born on June 18 at the Duke Lemur Center. DLC Director Anne Yoder said the birth of these twins is particularly significant in terms of the Center’s research, because mouse lemurs have been documented to show symptoms of dementia very similar to the onset of Alzheimer's in humans. By studying mouse lemur genomes, the Center hopes to shed light on the nature of Alzheimer's.

Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 16:00

Eating lots of broccoli may slow down and even prevent osteoarthritis, UK researchers believe.

The University of East Anglia team is starting human trials following on from successful lab studies.

Tests on cells and mice showed that a broccoli compound - which humans can also get from Brussels sprouts and cabbage - blocked a key destructive enzyme that damages cartilage.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013 - 16:19

Scientists have used a gene therapy technique to reverse symptoms of Rett syndrome in mice, showing the potential for clinical application.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013 - 15:43

UW-Madison researchers say fine control of genome editing in fruit flies promises to provide new insights into embryonic development, nervous system function, and the understanding of human disease.

Friday, August 23, 2013 - 14:05

It's well known that natural redheads are at higher odds for deadly melanoma skin cancer, and new research in mice may help explain why.

Researchers at Harvard Medical School say the genetic mutation responsible for red hair and light skin also appears to promote a well-known cancer-causing pathway.

Thursday, August 22, 2013 - 15:14

A small, native-Irish marine animal with remarkable powers of regeneration has provided stem cell scientists studying congenital defects and cancer biology with significant new leads.

Hydractinia echinata has the power to regenerate any lost body part, can clone itself, does not age biologically, and, according to Dr Uri Frank, who is leading the research at NUI Galway’s regenerative medicine institute, “in theory - lives forever”.

The tiny creature, which is a relative of jellyfish and sea anemones, is “perfect for understanding the role of stem cells in development, ageing and disease,” says Dr Frank.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013 - 16:15

A lifetime of too much copper in our diets may be contributing to Alzheimer's disease, US scientists say. However, research is divided, with other studies suggesting copper may actually protect the brain. The latest study in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences showed high levels of copper left the brain struggling to get rid of a protein thought to cause the dementia. The study on mice, by a team at the University of Rochester in New York, suggested that copper interfered with the brain's shielding - the blood brain barrier.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013 - 16:16