News Archive

This week Autism Speaks announced that it initiated and is funding the development of new genetically modified rat models of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). My team at Baylor College of Medicine will help characterize these models in close partnership with the science staff at Autism Speaks and SAGE Labs. These models will provide autism researchers with important new tools for understanding the underlying biology of ASD and testing experimental medicines. Indeed, they will be among the first rat models made widely available to the field of autism research.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012 - 14:00

A molecule widely assailed as the chief culprit in Alzheimer’s disease unexpectedly reverses paralysis and inflammation in several distinct animal models of a different disorder — multiple sclerosis, Stanford University School of Medicine researchers have found.

Thursday, August 2, 2012 - 15:22

Using mutant zebra fish, researchers studying the earliest formation of cartilage of the mouth believe they may have gotten a look at a mechanism involved in a genetic defect linked to Fraser syndrome deafness in humans.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012 - 15:47

The Food and Drug Administration has approved a phase 1 clinical trial to evaluate the safety of transplanting human Schwann cells to treat patients with paralysis. It is the first such trial in the world. In studies done in rats and mice, pigs and in primates, about 70 percent of function and movement was restored to the fully paralyzed animals.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012 - 15:25

Using animal models researchers at the University of Michigan Kellogg Eye Center have identified a compound that could interrupt the chain of events that cause damage to the retina in diabetic retinopathy.

Monday, July 30, 2012 - 15:57

A team of Boston scientists has for the first time altered the brain activity and behavior of monkeys with what sounds like science fiction -- blue flashes of light that directly activate brain cells.

Friday, July 27, 2012 - 12:43

Rodney Johnson and his collaborators have developed an alternative model -piglets - for studying infant brain development.

Thursday, July 26, 2012 - 14:45

An NIH video shows how the zebrafish, Danio rerio, is a valuable resource for scientists trying to understand the intricate process by which a fertilized egg develops into a fully formed individual, and the numerous diseases and conditions that can result when even a tiny part of the process goes wrong.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012 - 10:05

Mice appear to have a specialized system for detecting and at least initially processing instinctually important smells such as those that denote predators. The finding raises a question about whether their response to those smells is hardwired.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012 - 15:51

Researchers have designed a bioengineered jellyfish that can swim, an early step in scientists' quest for a way to make fresh tissue for patients with damaged hearts.

Monday, July 23, 2012 - 08:57

Whether a tree branch or a computer mouse is the target, reaching for objects is fundamental primate behaviour. To find out what goes on in the brain when we reach for things, biomedical engineers Daniel Moran and Thomas Pearce at Washington University in St Louis, Missouri, trained two rhesus macaques to participate in a series of exercises. When the monkeys reached for items, electrodes measured the activity of neurons in their dorsal premotor cortex, a region of the brain that is involved in the perception of movement.

Friday, July 20, 2012 - 15:34

Scientists who created mice with elements of the human immune system believe the rodents will further efforts to develop a vaccine against HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.

Thursday, July 19, 2012 - 14:14

Researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University have uncovered one of the mechanisms  by which aging may compromise the ability of the immune system to fight infections and respond to vaccines. The study, conducted in aging mice, shows that administering antioxidants may help reverse this loss of immune function. The findings were published online this month in the journal Cell Reports.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - 15:27

The researchers call her Rosie II—the large, furry spider in their laboratory terrarium. She has a silvery coat, eight hairy legs and a blush-tinged carapace. When she stretches out, she covers the surface of a human palm. The critter was a mascot of sorts for his research team, which was investigating the effect of venoms on important cellular structures called mechanosensitive ion channels.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012 - 15:44

Sasha is still spunky at 12 - a white dog with a smattering of black, floppy ears and a sweet face. Even after she lost her right foreleg to bone cancer, her owners said, she could jump and catch a Frisbee. Doctors at Penn's School of Veterinary Medicine pumped a modified listeria bacteria into her bloodstream, hoping to push her immune system to kill remaining cancer cells. If the treatment works, it is likely to be tested next on humans with this type of bone cancer, called osteosarcoma.

Monday, July 16, 2012 - 14:19

The common barnyard chicken could provide some very un-common clues for fighting off diseases and might even offer new ways to attack cancer, according to a team of international researchers that includes a Texas A&M University professor.

Friday, July 13, 2012 - 15:19

 An odd-looking mammal is offering new clues into the possibility of a longer life or even a cancer-free life for people.

Friday, July 13, 2012 - 14:19

In his June 12, 2012 article, Rep. Roscoe Bartlett (R-Md.) argues that ending experimentation on chimpanzees is the right choice. While Rep. Bartlett is entitled to his views, we believe strongly that the passage of S. 810/H.R. 1513, the Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act (GAPCSA), which he introduced, would have a devastating impact upon the advancement of medicine and human health.

Thursday, July 12, 2012 - 16:23

The ability to control whether certain stem cells ultimately become bone cells holds great promise for regenerative medicine and potential therapies aimed at treating metabolic bone diseases. Now, UCLA School of Dentistry professor and leading cancer scientist Dr. Cun-Yu Wang and his research team have made a significant breakthrough in that direction. The scientists have discovered two key epigenetic regulating genes - using mice- that govern the cell-fate determination of human bone marrow stem cells.

Thursday, July 12, 2012 - 15:25

New vaccines promote weight loss. A new study, published in BioMed Central’s open access journal, Journal of Animal Science and Biotechnology, assesses the effectiveness of two somatostatin vaccinations, JH17 and JH18, in reducing weight gain and increasing weight loss in mice.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012 - 15:09