News Archive

A molecular pathway within the brain’s reward circuitry appears to contribute to alcohol abuse, according to laboratory mouse research supported by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The findings, published online today in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, also provide evidence that the pathway may be a promising new target for the treatment of alcohol problems.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010 - 17:09

University scientists are using a seemingly unlikely animal to study development, cell function and the effects of debilitating human diseases.  Ninety percent of zebrafish's amino acids are in the same order as a human's. Because of these similarities, zebrafish make excellent model organisms for research on human diseases.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010 - 17:01

At Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute (Sanford-Burnham), a team led by Sean Oldham, Ph.D., and Rolf Bodmer, Ph.D., recently created a simple model to link high-fat diet, obesity and heart dysfunction. Using fruit flies, they discovered that a protein called TOR influences fat accumulation in the heart.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010 - 16:15

Scientists at the National Institutes of Health have redefined the roles of several cytokines involved in the generation of immune cells implicated in severe autoimmune diseases. The study in mice showed that development of Th17 immune cells can occur without the presence of transforming growth factor (TGF)-beta, a mediator thought to be required for Th17 cell development.

Thursday, October 28, 2010 - 16:36

Genes involved in fruit fly learning processes are similar in structure and function to those in humans and other mammals.

Thursday, October 28, 2010 - 11:05

Type 1 diabetes (T1D), formerly known as juvenile diabetes, is a multifactorial disease of complex etiology characterized by the autoimmune destruction of pancreatic beta cells. In addition to genetic susceptibility, it is generally accepted that environmental factors play important roles in triggering disease, with virus infection having perhaps the strongest association.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 - 14:12

Scientists are reporting progress in their efforts to channel brain waves to power mechanical devices, a development that could someday help paralyzed people regain mobility.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 - 13:59

An operation commonly performed to remove brain tumors from the pituitary glands of humans is now available to dogs, thanks to a collaboration between a neurosurgeon and some veterinarians in Los Angeles. And that is turning out to be good for humans.

Monday, October 25, 2010 - 10:43

A toxin found in the venom of the Central American bark scorpion (Centruroides margaritatus) could hold the key to reducing heart bypass failures, according to research from the University of Leeds.

Friday, October 22, 2010 - 12:35

Many studies have suggested that genetic differences make some individuals more susceptible to the addictive effects of alcohol and other drugs. Now scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory provide the first experimental evidence to directly support this idea in a study in mice.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010 - 10:51

Princeton engineers have developed a sensor that may revolutionize how drugs and medical devices are tested for contamination, and in the process also help ensure the survival of two species of threatened animals.  To be fair, some of the credit goes to an African frog.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010 - 10:32

Survival rates of the world's most common cancer might soon be increased with a new vitamin E treatment which could significantly reduce tumour regrowth.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010 - 12:43

Two research teams from the Okayama University Graduate School of Medicine (Okayama, Japan) have reported breakthrough studies in liver cell transplantation. One team found that the technical breakthrough in creating induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) from mouse somatic cells (nonsex cells) in vitro had "implications for overcoming immunological rejection." Whereas a second team using liver cell xenotransplantation - transplanting cells of one species into another (in this case transplanting pig liver cells into mice) - found that transplanted liver cells from widely divergent species can function to correct acute liver failure and prolong survival.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010 - 11:31

Finding a drug that can cross the blood-brain barrier is the bane of drug development for Alzheimer's disease and other neurological disorders of the brain. A new Penn study, published this week in the Journal of Neuroscience, has found and tested in an animal model of Alzheimer's disease a class of drug that is able to enter the brain, where it stabilizes degenerating neurons and improves memory and learning.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010 - 11:21

Deaf people with enhanced vision can thank otherwise idle brain cells for their heightened sense, a new study in cats suggests.  That's because the brain recruits cells normally devoted to hearing to help them see better, the research revealed.

Monday, October 18, 2010 - 11:52

Very little is known about the causes of pancreatic cancer. However, the discovery of a protein that produces cancerous cells has led University of Minnesota researchers Ashok Saluja, Gunda Georg, and Selwyn Vickers to the drug Minnelide.

Monday, October 18, 2010 - 10:59

Most human cells have 23 pairs of chromosomes, the large bundles of DNA that store all of a cell’s genetic information. However, scientists realized more than 100 years ago that tumor cells usually have extra copies of some chromosomes. This trait, known as aneuploidy, appears to give tumor cells a survival edge.

Thursday, October 7, 2010 - 14:52

For the first time, a treatment in mice has shown promise against the final, metastatic stages of terminal cancer. Unusually, the antibody targets healthy tissue, not tumour cells, suggesting normal cells play an unwitting role in terminal cancers.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010 - 10:57

Thanks to a discovery by a Saint Louis University researcher, scientists have identified an important microRNA that may allow us to better control cholesterol levels in blood. 


Tuesday, October 5, 2010 - 15:33

Laboratory animal research results help explain the mechanisms that underlie the formation of reward-cued spatial memories in both the laboratory model and human dentate gyrus. Understanding this mechanism not only explains the biology of an important form of learning, but may also lead to potential treatments for addiction and obesity.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010 - 10:50