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Junk DNA not as worthless as once thought

Around 75 per cent of the supposed functionless DNA in the human genome is transcribed into so-called non-coding RNAs (ribonucleic acid). To date, little is known about its function. Researchers have now been able to demonstrate that the production of non-coding RNAs is precisely regulated. They suspect that non-coding RNAs might play a role in regulating cellular processes or in the modified immune response following exposure to environmental toxicants.

Posted: Jul 23rd, 2014

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High-speed coherent Raman fingerprint imaging of biological tissues

Researchers have demonstrated a dramatically improved technique for analyzing biological cells and tissues based on characteristic molecular vibrations. The new technique is an advanced form of Raman spectroscopy that is fast and accurate enough to create high-resolution images of biological specimens, with detailed spatial information on specific biomolecules, at speeds fast enough to observe changes in living cells.

Posted: Jul 22nd, 2014

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Achieving chemical-free natural cosmetics with the power of enzymes

A EUR 7 million EU-funded project has been launched with the intention of replacing chemical cosmetic production techniques with eco-friendly alternatives. By doing so, the OPTIBIOCAT project hopes to provide the natural cosmetics sector with the necessary technical sophistication to meet growing consumer demand for natural, environmentally friendly products.

Posted: Jul 22nd, 2014

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Speedy computation enables scientists to reconstruct an animal's development cell by cell

Recent advances in imaging technology are transforming how scientists see the cellular universe, showing the form and movement of once grainy and blurred structures in stunning detail. But extracting the torrent of information contained in those images often surpasses the limits of existing computational resources. Now, researchers have created a new computational method to rapidly track the three-dimensional movements of cells in such data-rich images.

Posted: Jul 20th, 2014

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Measuring the number of protein molecules inside cells

Scientists were able to measure the amount of protein molecules in living human cells required to form an important structure of the chromosome, the centromere. This study presents new methodologies that may also be used to unveil other biological problems.

Posted: Jul 18th, 2014

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