Researchers Propose New Theory to Explain How Visual Pigments are “Tuned”

Scientists from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) at The Rockefeller University and from the University of California-Berkeley have proposed a new theory on how the human eye perceives colors. Using techniques of molecular biology and spectroscopy, the research, reported in the August issue of Trends in Biochemical Sciences, changes the way scientists have thought about color vision for nearly 20 years. More »

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Rockefeller University Luncheon Honors Science Outreach Program, Promotes Siemens Westinghouse Competition

The Rockefeller University and the Siemens Foundation will sponsor a luncheon on Wednesday, August 18, to honor Rockefeller’s Science Outreach Program for high school students and teachers and to promote the Siemens Westinghouse Science and Technology Competition. Sponsored by The Siemens Foundation, this newly founded national science competition aims to “recognize talent early on, fostering individual growth for those students willing to challenge themselves through the development of independent research projects.” More »

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Rockefeller Scientists Discover a Surprising New Cancer Gene

Scientists at The Rockefeller University have found, for the first time, that the persistent activation of a protein called Stat3 can, by itself, cause normal cells to behave like cancer cells. The research, reported in the August 6 issue of Cell, provides both a scientific surprise and a promising new target in the fight against cancer. Scientists already knew that Stat3 was often activated in various human cancer types, including lymphomas, leukemias, breast cancer and a high percentage of head and neck cancers, but until now no one knew whether persistent Stat3 activation could contribute directly to the development of tumors. More »

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Rockefeller Researchers Inject Cells, Boost Immune System in Humans

A single injection of specialized immune system cells­removed from the bloodstream and exposed to a foreign substance­can trigger a potent immune response in humans that lasts for months, Rockefeller University researchers report. The experiment provides the first conclusive evidence that one dose of these cells, called dendritic cells, can prompt a strong immune response, and it suggests new ways of improving vaccines and protecting against cancer. More »

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Rockefeller and Michigan State Scientists Identify Dangers of Tamoxifen and Recommend Simple Corrective Measures

A team of researchers at The Rockefeller University and Michigan State University has identified a biochemical mechanism that may cause the potentially life-threatening side-effects associated with use of the anti-breast cancer drug tamoxifen, and has recommended steps to reduce the danger. The findings are reported in the June 25 issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry. More »

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Rockefeller University Researchers Find Large Hole-Forming Protein in Bacteria — A Potential Achilles’ Heel?

Researchers at The Rockefeller University have shown for the first time that a protein called pIV forms a hole in the outer membrane of the bacterium E. coli to allow passage of large molecules. The finding, reported in the May 28 issue of the journal Science, may allow researchers to exploit the bacterium’s Achilles’ heel to better deliver antibiotics. More »

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Rockefeller University Scientists Receive Prestigious Awards for Cancer Research

Arnold J. Levine, Ph.D., newly appointed president of The Rockefeller University, and Robert G. Roeder, Ph.D., professor and head of the Laboratory of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, have been recognized by the General Motors Cancer Research Foundation for their major contributions to cancer research. More »

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Neurobiologists Show How the Brain Processes Signals from Pheromones

Researchers at The Rockefeller University have shown for the first time in mice how the brain processes signals from pheromones, essential chemicals used by animals to communicate with each other. Reported in the April 16 issue of Cell, the findings provide the first look at the “wiring diagram” of the accessory olfactory system and show that it differs dramatically from the wiring diagram for the main olfactory system, which all mammals, including humans, use to detect smells. More »

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Researchers Shed Light on How Cells Commit Suicide

A team of researchers led by Associate Professor David Cowburn,Ph.D., has determined the three-dimensional structure of a moleculethat regulates programmed cell death, a critical process importantfor many diseases, including cancer, heart disease and autoimmunity.The structure, reported in the March 5 issue of the journal Cell,provides a model for developing compounds to switch cell suicideon or off to treat these diseases. More »

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Researchers Report Emergence of Antibiotic Resistance during Vancomycin Therapy

A team of researchers led by The Rockefeller University’s AlexanderTomasz, Ph.D., have described the case of a 79-year-old patientwhose death in a New York metropolitan area hospital last Marchwas associated with a bloodstream infection caused by a multidrug-resistantstrain of Staphylococcus aureus. The report, publishedin the Feb. 18 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine(NEJM), showed that the bacteria, which had decreased susceptibilityto vancomycin, could be treated effectively with a combinationof antibiotics. More »

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A Little Stress May Have Big Benefits for Health

Rockefeller University researchers have shown that brain hormonesrally immune cells in response to stress. The findings, reportedin the Feb. 2 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academyof Sciences (PNAS), contradict the widely held notion thatall stress is bad for health and provides a basis for understandingthe role of stress in health and disease. More »

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400 High School Students Attack Foreign Invaders!: RU Mirsky Lecture on the Body’s Immune Response

On Monday, December 28, from 10:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., one of the leaders in the field of immunology will share his latest research with 400 area high school science students at the 39th Annual Alfred E. Mirsky Christmas Lecture Series on Science, The Rockefeller University, Caspary Hall, 1230 York Avenue (at 66th Street). Student attendance is by ticket only. Press coverage is invited. More »

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Rockefeller Discoveries Named Breakthroughs of the Year by Science Magazine

The Rockefeller University, the nation’s first biomedical research institute, will celebrate its Centennial in just two years. Most of the greatest scientific discoveries of the century are rooted in Rockefeller, including two Science magazine Breakthroughs of 1998 — on circadian rhythm and the biochemical roots of the nervous system. The university’s mission, to pursue science of the highest standard for the good of humanity, is captured in its motto pro bono humani generis. More »

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Scientists Show That Normal-looking Cells in Cervical Cancer May Be Abnormal

Researchers from The Rockefeller University and Digilab, using a technique called infrared (IR) spectroscopy, have shown that normal-looking cells taken from women with cervical cancer may actually be abnormal. The findings, published in the Dec. 22 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, may expand the definition of cancer, and lead to improved diagnostic techniques, such as reading of Pap smears. More »

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Scientists Show for the First Time How Leprosy Bug Targets Peripheral Nerves

A team of researchers, led by scientists from The Rockefeller University, have identified how the bacterium that causes leprosy targets the peripheral nerve, the crucial step leading to nerve damage in this disease. The findings, reported in the Dec. 11 issue of the journal Science, open a window on developing treatments for the prevention of nerve damage in leprosy and also for understanding the underlying mechanisms of early events of nerve damage in other neurodegenerative diseases such as muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis and various types of peripheral nerve diseases. More »

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Arnold J. Levine Becomes Eighth President of The Rockefeller University.

Arnold J. Levine, one of the world’s leading cancer researchers, officially became the eighth president of The Rockefeller University at the university’s board meeting on Wed., Dec. 2. Levine, who was elected president in June 1998, succeeds Torsten N. Wiesel, who is retiring after seven years of service as Rockefeller’s president. More »

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Rockefeller Researchers Show First Evidence for Naturally Occurring Tumor Immunity in Humans

A team of researchers from The Rockefeller University have now shown for the first time that humans are able to develop naturally occurring immunity to cancer. The study, reported in the November issue of Nature Medicine, provides support for the recent efforts to treat cancer patients by activating their immune response in a manner that would lead to tumor immunity, a treatment called immunotherapy. An understanding of naturally occurring tumor immunity is important for the development of better strategies to treat cancer. More »

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Mariellen Gallagher Joins Rockefeller University as Vice President for Communications and Public Affairs

Mariellen Gallagher, who has handled external affairs for three major universities, has been appointed vice president for communications and public affairs at The Rockefeller University. The announcement was made jointly by Arnold Levine, Ph.D., the president-elect of The Rockefeller University, and Torsten N. Wiesel, M.D., the current president. More »

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Structure of Enzyme Involved in Gentamicin Resistance Revealed for First Time

A team of scientists, led by researchers from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) at The Rockefeller University, has determined the three-dimensional structure of an enzyme responsible for resistance of certain bacteria to the antibiotic gentamicin. The structure, reported in the August 21 Cell, is the first for this family of antibiotics and presents a possible target for designing drugs to thwart resistance. More »

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Subtle Changes in Brain Receptor Gene May Have Significant Consequences for Addiction

Scientists have identified five slightly different versions of the mu opioid receptor gene that alter the activity of a molecule called b-endorphin, a member of the endorphin family of proteins that can numb pain, create feelings of euphoria or increase energy, which opiates and other drugs of analgesia and addiction do as well. The findings, reported by researchers from The Rockefeller University, Indiana University School of Medicine and University of Cincinnati College of Medicine in the August 4 Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences, show for the first time that these altered molecules are distributed differently among ethnic groups and have implications for normal physiology, therapeutics and vulnerability to develop or protect from diverse diseases involving mu opioid receptors, including the addictive diseases. More »

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