New mouse models give a boost to the development of cancer immunotherapies

New mouse models give a boost to the development of cancer immunotherapiesA new cancer treatment called CD40 antibody has yielded disappointing results when tested in clinical trials, failing to mobilize patients’ immune system against tumors the way it was expected to. But a recent study offers clues about how this experimental drug might be optimized to fulfill its potential. More »

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Do artificial sweeteners live up to the promise of sweetness without harm? An ongoing clinical study investigates

Do artificial sweeteners live up to the promise of sweetness without harm? An ongoing clinical study investigatesScientists suspect that aspartame and other artificial sweeteners can lead to lasting, metabolic disruptions when consumed frequently, by activating specific receptors in the intestine. A clinical study is now enrolling volunteer soda drinkers to test the hypothesis. More »

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Researchers uncover how “silent” genetic changes drive cancer

New insights into muscular dystrophy point to potential treatment avenuesSmall molecules called tRNA, whose job is to help translate genes into proteins, are not usually considered important for understanding the causes of disease. But a new study shows that fluctuations in some tRNAs may in fact influence the progression of breast cancer. More »

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New insights into muscular dystrophy point to potential treatment avenues

New insights into muscular dystrophy point to potential treatment avenuesCertain stem cells in our bodies have the potential to turn into either fat or muscle. Experiments in mice suggest prospective drugs that manipulate these cells’ fate could make it possible to relieve many of the symptoms of muscular dystrophy. More »

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Researchers find new signs of stress damage in the brain, plus hope for prevention

Researchers find new signs of stress damage in the brain, plus hope for preventionNew research shows that when mice experience chronic stress, neurons within part of their brain’s fear and anxiety center, the amygdala, retract. It also suggests how such changes could be prevented. More »

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New technique captures the activity of an entire brain in a snapshot

New technique captures the activity of an entire brain in a snapshot With a new imaging tool, scientists are able to measure the activity of all the neurons in a mouse brain with unmatched precision. The method is widely applicable for studying how the brain functions both under normal conditions and in disease. More »

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New method gives scientists a better look at how HIV infects and takes over its host cells

New method gives scientists a better look at how HIV infects and takes over its host cellsA research team wanted to know how HIV uses its tiny genome to manipulate our cells, gain entry, and replicate—all while escaping the immune system. They’ve spent a decade developing an experimental approach that finally is yielding answers. More »

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Rockefeller tops global ranking of scientific impact

Rockefeller tops global ranking of scientific impactRockefeller has the highest percentage of frequently cited scientific publications among 842 leading universities worldwide, according to a survey created by the Center for Science and Technology Studies of Leiden University. The ranking is based on publications indexed in a Thomson Reuters database between 2011 and 2014. More »

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Scientists find evidence that cancer can arise from changes in the proteins that package DNA

Scientists find evidence that cancer can arise from changes in the proteins that package DNAMutations in histones, the proteins that shield and package DNA, have been linked to many types of cancer, but their role in promoting disease has not been clear. Now, for the first time, scientists have found that a change to the structure of a histone can trigger a tumor on its own. More »

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C. David Allis receives the 2016 Gruber Genetics Prize

C. David Allis receives the 2016 Gruber Genetics PrizeAllis shares the award with Michael Grunstein of UCLA for identifying the critical role of histones and histone modification in regulating gene activity. The prize is awarded by The Gruber Foundation of Yale University and honors scientists whose work inspires fundamental shifts in knowledge and culture. More »

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Torsten Wiesel wins Karolinska Institute’s Jubilee Gold Medal

Torsten Wiesel wins Karolinska Institute’s Jubilee Gold MedalWiesel is celebrated with the medical university’s Jubilee Gold Medal for his extraordinary contributions to the Swedish scientific community and to Karolinska itself. The Karolinska Institute, one of the world’s leading medical universities, will present Wiesel with the medal at a ceremony on May 13. More »

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Antibody therapy opens door to potential new treatment for HIV

Antibody Therapy Opens Door to Potential New Treatment for HIVResearchers are developing an antibody-based drug that may provide a better strategy for long-term control of HIV. New results from a clinical trial suggest that a single dose of a so-called broadly neutralizing antibody enables patients’ immune systems to better fight the virus. More »

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Richard P. Lifton named 11th president of The Rockefeller University

Richard P. LiftonThe Rockefeller University today announced that its Board of Trustees has elected Richard P. Lifton to be the 11th president of the university, effective September 1, 2016. Lifton, 62, Sterling Professor of Genetics and chair of the Department of Genetics at Yale University, will succeed Marc Tessier-Lavigne, who is leaving Rockefeller to become Stanford University’s next president. More »

Researchers use new CRISPR-based strategy to replicate disease in cells

An experimental Alzheimer’s drug reverses genetic changes thought to spur the diseaseWith a new strategy they developed, Rockefeller scientists used the CRISPR genome editing system to engineer neurons so they looked like those in the brains of people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. This development will aid biomedical research by making it easier to create cellular models of disease. More »

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A central clock runs the cell division cycle

A central clock runs the cell division cycleScientists have long known that proteins called cyclins regulate cell division in yeast, but this picture has lately come into question as oscillations in gene expression were posited to run independently in the cell division cycle. Now a new study confirms that cyclins are indeed in control. More »

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New method allows first look at key stage of human development, embryo implantation

New method allows first look at key stage of human development, embryo implantationAlmost nothing is known about the stage of human development called implantation, when the developing embryo attaches to the uterus. Now scientists have devised a method that replicates implantation in an experimental setting, providing a revolutionary system capable of answering basic questions about our own development. More »

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Nathaniel Heintz and Stanislas Leibler elected to the National Academy of Sciences

Nathanial Heintz and Stanislas Leibler elected to the National Academy of SciencesHeintz, who studies the inner workings of the mammalian brain, and Leibler, who explores questions related to how simple genetic and biochemical networks function, are among the new members and foreign associates to be inducted into the Academy. With Heintz and Leibler’s election, Rockefeller now boasts 37 members or foreign associates of the National Academy of Sciences among its current faculty.

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Charles Rice wins Belgium’s highest scientific prize

Charles Rice wins Belgium’s highest scientific prizeRice has received the 2016 InBev-Baillet Latour Health Prize for his fundamental discoveries in the field of infectious diseases. The award, given by the Baillet Latour Fund to recognize outstanding contributions in biomedical research for the benefit of human health, is Belgium’s most important scientific prize. More »

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An experimental Alzheimer’s drug reverses genetic changes thought to spur the disease

An experimental Alzheimer’s drug reverses genetic changes thought to spur the diseaseWhen given to old rats, riluzole reversed many age-related changes that occur in a brain region key to learning and memory. This drug also produced effects opposing those seen in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients. More »

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Mice engineered with rare kidney disease provide new insights about how cells repair broken DNA

Mice engineered with rare kidney disease provide new insights about how cells repair broken DNAMutations in many genes involved in a certain type of DNA repair cause a rare anemia, but one such gene has been shown to cause kidney disease instead. By eliminating this unique gene in mice, scientists hope to show how and why it has such different effects. More »

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