As more reports appear of a grim 'post-antibiotic era' ushered in by the rise of drug-resistant bacteria, a new strategy for fighting infection is emerging that targets a patient's cells rather than those of the invading pathogens. The technique interferes with the way that the pathogens take over a patient's cells to cause infection.
Since the discovery of penicillin, fungi have been a nearly inexhaustible source for the discovery of new drugs. 'Crowdsourcing', the cooperation of a large number of interested nonscientists, has helped to find a new fungus from which American researchers have now isolated and characterized an unusual metabolite with interesting antitumor activity.
The Petri dish is a classical biological laboratory device, but it is no ideal living environment for many types of cells. Studies lose validity, as cell behavior on a flat plastic surface differs from that in branched lung tissue, for example. Researchers of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology have now presented a method to make three-dimensional structures attractive or repellent for certain types of cells.
Funds extend a decade of unclassified research at UCSB's Institute for Collaborative Biotechnologies in areas such as biotechnology tools, futuristic materials, energy generation and storage, systems and synthetic biology, and neuroscience.
In an important scientific breakthrough in regenerative medicine, researchers at A*STAR's Genome Institute of Singapore have successfully converted human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) cultured in the laboratory to a state that is closer to the cells found in the human blastocyst.
A research team has found a way to stabilize hemoglobin, the oxygen carrier protein in the blood, a discovery that could lead to the development of stable vaccines and affordable artificial blood substitutes.
In the arms race between bacteria and modern medicine, bacteria have gained an edge. In recent decades, bacterial resistance to antibiotics has developed faster than the production of new antibiotics, making bacterial infections increasingly difficult to treat. Now researchers have discovered a protein that kills bacteria. The isolation of this protein, produced by a virus that attacks bacteria, is a major step toward developing a substitute for conventional antibiotics.
Researchers have tried for decades to understand the undulations and gyrations that allow transport proteins to shuttle molecules from one side of a cell membrane to the other. Now scientists report that they have found a way to penetrate the mystery. They have worked out every step in the molecular dance that enables one such transporter to do its job.
For the first time, scientists have succeeded in transforming human stem cells into functional lung and airway cells. The advance, reported by Columbia University Medical Center researchers, has significant potential for modeling lung disease, screening drugs, studying human lung development, and, ultimately, generating lung tissue for transplantation.