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Scientists discover key driver of human aging

Salk Institute findings on premature aging syndrome could lead to way of slowing or reversing aging process
May 1, 2015

Salk Institute researchers discovered that a protein mutated in the premature aging disorder, Werner syndrome, plays a key role in stabilizing heterochromatin, a tightly packaged form of DNA. More generally, the findings suggest that heterochromatin disorganization may be a key driver of aging. This image shows normal human cells (left) and genetically modified cells developed by the Salk scientists to model Werner syndrome (right), which showed signs of aging, including their large size. (Credit: Salk Institute for Biological Studies)

A study tying the aging process to the deterioration of tightly packaged bundles of cellular DNA could lead to methods of preventing and treating age-related diseases such as cancer, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease, scientists at the Salk Institute and the Chinese Academy of Science note in a paper published Thursday, April 30 in the journal Science.

They found that the genetic mutations underlying… read more

Scientists Discover Light Force with ‘Push’ Power

July 14, 2009

A team of Yale University researchers has discovered a “repulsive” light force that can be used to control components on silicon microchips, meaning future nanodevices could be controlled by light rather than electricity.

Scientists discover magnetic superatoms

June 16, 2009

A “magnetic superatom” — a stable cluster of atoms that can mimic different elements of the periodic table and that one day may have applications in spintronics (using electron spin for memory and data processing) — has been discovered by Virginia Commonwealth University scientists.

Scientists discover mechanism that could reduce obesity

December 12, 2012


An international team of scientists led by Virginia Commonwealth University Massey Cancer Center researcher Andrew Larner, M.D., Ph.D., has successfully reversed obesity in mice by manipulating the production of an enzyme known as tyrosine-protein kinase-2 (Tyk2).

In their experiments, the scientists discovered that Tyk2 helps regulate obesity in mice and humans through the differentiation of a type of fat tissue known as brown adipose tissue (BAT).… read more

Scientists discover new method of observing interactions in nanoscale systems

January 17, 2008

Scientists at Ludwig-Maximilians University have used new optical technologies to observe interactions in nanoscale systems that Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle usually would prohibit.

Using a new high-resolution laser spectroscopy system, they measured photons scattered from a single quantum dot while increasing the laser intensity to saturate the dot’s optical absorption. This allowed them to observe very weak interactions, signaled by the appearance of the Fano effect (which changes the way… read more

Scientists discover new way to study nanostructures

July 25, 2007

Scientists at the Georgia Institute of Technology have discovered a phenomenon that allows measurement of the mechanical motion of nanostructures by using the AC Josephson effect.

The Josephson effect has numerous applications in physics, computing and sensing technologies. It can be used for ultra high sensitive detection of electromagnetic radiation, extremely weak magnetic fields and in superconducting quantum computing bits.

Scientists discover origin of a giant synapse

May 28, 2013

The calyx of Held (orange) is a type of giant synapse, which synapses onto MNTB neurons (green) and relays excitatory information to these neurons. The neurons in turn send inhibitory outputs to a number of targets in the auditory brain stem and thus act as a master source of well-timed inhibition for the lower auditory system. (Credit: University of Colorado School of Medicine)

EPFL scientists have revealed a mechanism responsible for the creation of giant synapses in the brain that allow us to efficiently process auditory information.

Humans and most mammals can determine the spatial origin of sounds with remarkable acuity. To accomplish this small daily miracle, the brain has developed a circuit that’s rapid enough to detect the tiny lag that occurs between the moment the auditory information reaches one of… read more

Scientists discover potential new drug delivery system

August 26, 2009

Using a peptide allows for an attached nanoparticle, such as a drug, to be delivered more effectively from the bloodstream into cells, similar to how viruses work.

Scientists discover previously unknown cleansing system in brain

Newer imaging technique discovers "glymphatic system"; may hold key to preventing Alzheimer’s disease
August 16, 2012

Glymphatic system (credit: Jeffrey J. Iliff et al./Science Translational Medicine)

A previously unrecognized system that drains waste from the brain at a rapid clip has been discovered by neuroscientists at the University of Rochester Medical Center.

The highly organized system acts like a series of pipes that piggyback on the brain’s blood vessels, sort of a shadow plumbing system that seems to serve much the same function in the brain as the lymph system does… read more

Scientists discover protein that can slow brain tumor growth in mice

May 14, 2014

MRI image of glioblastoma (credit: Wikipedia commons)

Biochemists have identified a protein that can be used to slow down or speed up the growth of glioblastoma brain tumors in mice.

A preclinical study led by Eric J. Wagner, Ph.D., and Ann-Bin Shyu, Ph.D., of The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) and Wei Li, Ph.D., of Baylor College of Medicine appear in Nature.

“Our work could lead to… read more

Scientists discover record-breaking hydrogen storage materials for use in fuel cells

November 11, 2007

Scientists at the University of Virginia have discovered a new class of hydrogen storage materials that could make the storage and transportation of energy much more efficient and affordable through higher-performing hydrogen fuel cells.

The materials absorb hydrogen up to 14 percent by weight at room temperature, vs. 7 to 8 percent of hydrogen, for most current materials, and only at cryogenic temperatures.

Scientists discover why a specific cancer drug is so effective

April 29, 2013


Scientists from the Manchester Collaborative Center for Inflammation Research (MCCIR) have discovered why a particular cancer drug is so effective at killing cells. Their findings could be used to aid the design of future cancer treatments.

Professor Daniel Davis and his team used high quality video imaging to investigate why the drug rituximab is so effective at killing cancerous B cells. It is widely used… read more

Scientists Dish Up Rice Vaccine to Fight Cholera

June 12, 2007

Japanese researchers have created a strain of rice that can act as a vaccine and last for more than a year and a half at room temperature.

Immunologist Hiroshi Kiyono of the University of Tokyo and his colleagues inserted the genetic material from the microbe responsible for producing cholera toxin into a rice plant, whose genome has recently been sequenced. The plants produced the toxin and when the rice… read more

Scientists divided over longevity

March 29, 2006

Aubrey de Grey’s claims for long life based on SENS (Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence) have drawn criticism from some gerontologists.

Scientists Dubious of Quantum Claims

February 19, 2007

Independent quantum computing researchers said they are dubious of some of the claims made by D-Wave Systems Inc. because the company has not yet submitted its findings for peer review.

The company did not make the machine available for inspection and instead showed video from a remote location.

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