Category Archives: Science News
Researchers at The Rockefeller University and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute have identified the mechanism by which the cell’s protein recycler, the proteasome, ramps up its activity to take care of unwanted and potentially toxic proteins. The finding, which has implications for treating muscle wasting and neurodegeneration, also suggests that small molecule inhibitors of this mechanism may be clinically useful in treating multiple myeloma. More »
An international team of scientists led by Rockefeller University researchers has identified the defective gene responsible for a rare disorder in which children are born without a spleen, which makes them susceptible to life-threatening bacterial infections early in life. The findings may lead to new diagnostic tests and raises new questions about the role of this gene in the body’s protein-making machinery.
Scientists at Rockefeller University and Astex Pharmaceuticals have discovered a new broad range antibiotic that kills a wide range of bacteria, including drug-resistant Staphylococcus (MRSA) bacteria that do not respond to traditional drugs, in mice. The antibiotic, Epimerox, targets weaknesses in bacteria that have long been exploited by viruses that attack them, known as phage.
Scientists in David Allis’s laboratory have shown how a mutated histone protein inhibits an enzyme, which normally keeps cell growth in check, and causes a rare form of pediatric brain cancer called DIPG. Their findings reveal a mechanism for inhibiting enzymes and could lead to the development of pharmaceuticals that mimic the action of these mutant proteins.
Researchers at Rockefeller University, along with colleagues at Necker Hospital for Sick Children and the Pasteur Institute in Paris and Ben-Gurion University in Israel, have generated the full set of distances, routes and degrees of separation between any two human genes, creating a map of gene “shortcuts” that aims to simplify the hunt for disease-causing genes in monogenic diseases. More »
Researchers in Elaine Fuchs’ Laboratory of Mammalian Cell Biology and Development have elucidated how adult stem cells in hair follicles communicate with each other and what keeps them silent for prolonged periods of time. More »
Daniel Kronauer and his colleagues at University of Paris 13 have found that when Cerapachys biroi ants execute their fellow colony-members for laying eggs when they shouldn’t, it’s not because of a fight for reproductive dominance, as some had thought. More »
Researchers led by Rockefeller’s Jesse Ausubel analyzed factors such as global land use and population growth over the last 50 years. Looking at the production index of all crops of the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization, they found that from 1961 to 2009 land farmed grew by only 12 percent while the index rose about 300 percent.
Rockefeller researchers in Michel Nussenzweig’s Laboratory of Molecular Immunology have found that a newly-discovered class of especially potent antibodies is effective at neutralizing HIV infection in mice for a 60 day period, longer than current antiretroviral drugs which require daily application. The antibodies, which suppressed the virus when used in combination, could one day be given to humans to treat the disease. More »
New research from Rockefeller University has shown that chemicals in the brain — neuropeptides known as vasopressin and oxytocin — play a role in coordinating mating and reproductive behavior in animals ranging from humans to fish to invertebrates. More »
A prestigious Rockefeller University award for exceptional women scientists recognizes a pioneer in the field of RNA biology whose discoveries involved patients with a variety of autoimmune diseases. Steitz will receive the award from National Geographic Explorer in Residence Sylvia Earle at a ceremony in Rockefeller’s Caspary Auditorium on November 29. More »
A team of scientists has shown that, at least in the short term, cholesterol levels did not improve when volunteers with vitamin D deficiency received mega-doses of vitamin D. Although previous evidence suggested there might be a link between vitamin D and heart disease, the clinical results confirm those from a data mining study published in July. More »
Experiments in pneumococcal bacteria show how an RNA interference mechanism known as CRISPR can be used to prevent the uptake of genetic material from the environment. Harnessing this mechanism could be a new way to manipulate bacterial evolution in ways that might be medically useful. More »
Research led by Rockefeller University scientists found that a protein once thought to be mainly involved in antiviral immunity is instead vital to fighting a type of bacteria that cause diseases such as tuberculosis and leprosy.
Cell 150: 533-548 (August 3, 2012) Exome capture reveals ZNF423 and CEP164 mutations, linking renal ciliopathies to DNA damage response signaling Moumita Chaki, Rannar Airik, Amiya K. Ghosh, Rachel H. Giles, Rui Chen, Gisela G. Slaats, Hui Wang, Toby W. … More »
A detailed analysis of a large panel of so-called ALT cell lines shows that they frequently undergo chromosomal changes and are impaired in their ability to detect and repair damage in their DNA. The work suggests a mechanism by which 10 to 15 percent of human cancers develop. More »
A team of researchers led by scientists at Rockefeller University have shown how sweat glands develop and how their cells respond to injury. Their research also identifies the stem cells within the sweat glands and sweat ducts and enables scientists to begin to explore the cells’ potential for making tissues for the first time. More »
Sarah Wacker, Tarun Kapoor and their colleagues have hit on a new method for determining a drug’s molecular target that takes the guesswork out of the equation. The approach makes use of RNA sequencing and advances in data processing technologies to examine all of the differences between a drug-resistant cell and a normal cell and pinpoint the change most likely to cause resistance, which may suggest the drug’s target. More »