In a triumph for cell biology, researchers have assembled the first high-resolution, 3-D maps of entire folded genomes and found a structural basis for gene regulation - a kind of 'genomic origami' that allows the same genome to produce different types of cells.
When a large protein unfolds in transit through a cell, it slows down and can get stuck in traffic. Using a specialized microscope , researchers now can watch the way the unfolded protein diffuses. Studying the relationship between protein folding and transport could provide great insight into protein-misfolding diseases such as Alzheimer's and Huntington's.
Efflux pumps are surface proteins that prevent antimicrobial drugs from getting a foothold in a bacterial cell by identifying and pumping them out of the cell. New research suggests that small pieces of those drugs could keep the efflux pumps busy and allow the antimicrobial drugs to reach a critical mass inside the cell.
Scientists can now explore nerves in mice in much greater detail than ever before, thanks to an approach developed by scientists at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL). The work enables researchers to easily use artificial tags, broadening the range of what they can study and vastly increasing image resolution.
Scientists have developed a method for producing biological crystals that has allowed scientists to observe - for the first time - DNA double chain breaks. They have also developed a computer simulation that makes this process, which lasts in the order of millionths of a second, visible to the human eye.
This new research tool offers a more profound view of the immune responses that are involved in a range of diseases, such as HIV infection. At the level of gene transcription, this had been difficult, complex and costly to do with current technologies, such as microscopy.
Researchers created a synthetic surface on which the adhesion of E. coli bacteria can be controlled. The layer, which is only approximately four nanometres thick, imitates the saccharide coating (glycocalyx) of cells onto which the bacteria adhere such as during an infection.
Scientists have created the world's first enzymes made from artificial genetic material. Their synthetic enzymes, which are made from molecules that do not occur anywhere in nature, are capable of triggering chemical reactions in the lab.