Category Archives: Science News
While it’s possible to anticipate the color of light or the pitch of sound, odor defies prediction. New research has taken an important step toward decoding smell, by linking a scent back to a molecule’s chemistry.
Researchers have determined how a specific protein regulates the brain’s response to cocaine. Their findings provide fresh insights into the neurobiology of addiction, and could lead to the development of better interventions and treatments.
A former Rockefeller postdoctoral associate has named a new species of beetle Nymphister kronaueri, after his mentor, Daniel Kronauer. Discovered in the Costa Rican rainforest, the beetle anchors itself tightly to backside of nomadic ants, hitchhiking a ride to new nesting sites. More »
When it divides, a stem cell has a choice: produce more stem cells or turn into the specific types of cells that compose skin, muscle, brain, or other tissue. New experiments in skin show this decision can be altered if tiny organs within cells aren’t positioned and divvied up properly. More »
A drug known as 10-1074, based on a human antibody against HIV, has dramatically reduced virus levels in patients and appeared to prevent infection among those at high risk, according to data from a new clinical trial. More »
In studying a cousin of the bacterium that causes tuberculosis, scientists have drawn a molecular map of the target for rifampicin, a common antibiotic. They are now using it in an effort to combat multi-resistant tuberculosis, for which existing treatments don’t work. More »
For life to propagate, the instructions in our DNA must be copied and passed on to future generations. Focusing on the structure of the machinery that executes this process, scientists have revealed that the orientation of the proteins involved is different from what has previously been reported. More »
After contracting dengue fever once, certain people who encounter the virus again develop much more severe infections. New research identifies an immunological signature that could help identify and better treat these patients. More »
Researchers have shown that a shift in translation, the process by which cells produce proteins from RNA, may promote skin cancer. The discovery could potentially aid the development of new treatments.
Researchers have shown that a combination of three antibody drugs can completely suppress HIV in infected mice. The antibodies were isolated from a patient whose immune system mounted an unusually effective response against the virus. More »
By determining the three-dimensional structures of these molecules down to the level of atoms, the researchers have unlocked key details as to how they function in the body. More »
Some of the visual information our brains receive is potentially misleading. New research on fruit flies demonstrates how even a simple brain can filter out such misinformation, hinting at how our own brains might shape how we see the world—and how we react to it. More »
Researchers have identified a mutation that prompts bacterial cells to acquire genetic memories 100 times more frequently than they do naturally. This discovery provides a powerful research tool and could bring scientists one step closer to developing DNA-based data storage devices. More »
Scientists have discovered the signaling pathways that help hair follicles and sweat glands form during development, and identified the mechanism that allows both of these features to coexist in human skin. The findings may improve the methods used to grow tissue used in grafting procedures.
Doctors have trouble diagnosing melanoma because benign moles look very similar to malignant growths. But in developing a new technology that automatically extracts quantitative data from images of melanomas, scientists hope to help doctors detect the disease earlier and avoid unnecessary biopsies. More »
Researchers have determined for the first time the complete structure of an ion channel known as BK, or “big potassium.” This molecular map offers new insights on how BK works and may aid in the development of treatments for diseases in which it malfunctions. More »
Researchers have created the most detailed images to date of a particle destined to become part of a ribosome. Their findings gave them a new view of how these essential nano-machines are put together. More »
In 1966, Rockefeller scientists published a landmark paper that would lead to the first medical treatment for heroin addiction. The drug has helped millions of heroin users around the world, yet its use in the United States remains controversial. More »
A map that shows the arrangement of atoms within the cystic fibrosis protein will help researchers better understand how specific mutations cause disease. Ultimately, this knowledge may reveal potential targets for new drugs. More »
Sifting soil from city parks, scientists have found microbial genes capable of making compounds whose potent effects can make them valuable tools in the fight against disease. Their research suggests that many more await discovery, even in a place as mundane as urban dirt. More »