A scientific breakthrough by researchers at the University of Kent has revealed how vitamin B12/antipernicious anaemia factor is made - a challenge often referred to as 'the Mount Everest of biosynthetic problems'.
The method combines two high-tech laboratory techniques and allows the researchers to precisely poke holes on the surface of a single cell with a high-powered femtosecond laser and then gently tug a piece of DNA through it using optical tweezers, which draw on the electromagnetic field of another laser.
By borrowing a tool from bacteria that infect plants, scientists have developed a new approach to eliminate mutated DNA inside mitochondria - the energy factories within cells. Doctors might someday use the approach to treat a variety of mitochondrial diseases, including the degenerative eye disease Leber hereditary optic neuropathy.
A new study finds that RNA editing is not only regulated by sequences and structures near the editing sites but also by ones found much farther away. One newly discovered structure gives an editing enzyme an alternate docking site. The other appears to throttle competing splicing activity.
Scientists have developed a model that makes predictions from which differentiated cells - for instance skin cells - can be very efficiently changed into completely different cell types - such as nerve cells, for example. This can be done entirely without stem cells.
Chemical flasks and inconvenient chemostats for cultivation of bacteria are likely soon to be discarded. Researchers from the Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw were first to construct a microfluidic system allowing for merging, transporting and splitting of microdroplets.
Abdominal pain, fever, diarrhoea - these symptoms could point to an infection with the bacterium Yersinia. The bacterium's pathogenic potential is based on a syringe-like injection apparatus called injectisome. For the first time, researchers have unraveled this molecular syringe's spatial conformation.
First produced only in the past decade, human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) are capable of developing into many or even all human cell types. In new research, scientists reprogrammed skin cells from patients with rare blood disorders into iPSCs, highlighting the great promise of these cells in advancing understanding of those challenging diseases - and eventually in treating them.