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Current Activation News and Events, Activation News Articles.
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Study pinpoints target for managing inflammation, promoting tissue repair
Drugs that can manage the activity of a protein called BCAP could help the body repair IBD-related tissue damage caused by inflammation, according to experts at Cincinnati Children's. (2020-11-16)

Brain metastases cause severe brain damage that can be inhibited by treatment
By using a specific treatment to override this activation, the researchers were able to return cerebrovascular flow to healthy levels. This improvement in blood flow around the metastases can limit the neurological deterioration associated with the progression of this disease and improve the otherwise poor life expectancy of these patients. (2020-11-12)

Re-mapping taste in the brain
A new study from Stony Brook University found that the map of neural responses mediating taste perception does not involve, as previously believed, specialized groups of neurons in the brain, but rather overlapping and spatially distributed populations. (2020-11-12)

Promising therapeutic approach against COPD
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is one of the most common and deadliest diseases worldwide. Until today, COPD is not curable. Researchers at Helmholtz Zentrum M√ľnchen and at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) have now succeeded in curing COPD in mice exposed to chronic cigarette smoke. Their goal is to test the novel therapeutic approach in human clinical trials over the next few years. (2020-11-04)

For plant and animal immune systems the similarities go beyond sensing
Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research (MPIPZ) and University of Cologne researcher Takaki Maekawa and colleagues have discovered that plants have independently evolved a family of immune proteins that are strikingly similar to animals. (2020-11-02)

How allergens trigger itching: Finding points to new targets for allergy drug development
A key step in the immune system's response to allergens has been uncovered by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital. They have shown that a neuropeptide called Substance P is released by certain neurons in the skin when they detect allergens, and that this substance is essential in the development of allergen-induced immune responses. This research could lead to the development of new and better methods to treat and prevent allergies. (2020-10-29)

Why are some COVID-19 infected people asymptomatic?
Immune cells in the lungs are important for the immune system's recognition and fight against viruses. However, the virus that produces COVID-19 is not recognised by these cells, as the virus may hide its genomic material, and as a result the cells' immune system against the virus is not activated. This may help explain why some people with COVID-19 are asymptomatic in the early stages of the disease. (2020-10-28)

Detect with PKAchu
Researchers use genetically engineered mice that fluoresce during PKA activation -- PKAchu -- to observe its activation in retina cells. They found prolonged PKA activates in darkness, after a subsequent light-on mode. Moreover, the activation was seen only in rod cells. The group hopes the results will lead to a better understanding of how our eyes see at night. (2020-10-27)

Identified a subgroup of stem cells that resists ageing and maintains muscle regeneration
For the first time the researchers have demonstrated in a study in mice that not all muscle stem cells age equally, and have identified a subgroup with greater regenerative capacity which is maintained until geriatric age. The finding provides a basis for mitigating the loss of muscle regenerative capacity in very elderly people. (2020-10-27)

Single brain region links depression and anxiety, heart disease, and treatment sensitivity
Over-activity in a single brain region called the subgenual anterior cingulate cortex (sgACC) underlies several key symptoms of mood and anxiety disorders, but an antidepressant only successfully treats some of the symptoms. A new study, published today in the journal Nature Communications, suggests that sgACC is a crucial region in depression and anxiety, and targeted treatment based on a patient's symptoms could lead to better outcomes. (2020-10-26)

'Patient activation' may improve quality of life in individuals with kidney disease
In individuals with chronic kidney disease who received online peer mentoring, improved patient activation correlated with improvements in various aspects of quality of life. Results from the study will be presented online during ASN Kidney Week 2020 Reimagined October 19-October 25. (2020-10-23)

New tricks for old antibiotics
The study published in the journal Immunity reveals that tetracyclines (broad spectre antibiotics), by partially inhibiting cell mitochondria activity, induce a compensatory response on the organism that decreases tissue damage caused during infection. This finding opens new doors in the field of disease tolerance and positions this group of antibiotics as potential adjuvant treatment for sepsis, due to their effects that go beyond the control of bacterial burden. (2020-10-22)

How does the immune system develop in the first days of life?
Researchers highlight the anti-inflammatory response taking place after birth and designed to shield the newborn from infection. Early protection is ensured by the innate immunity through the rapid development of the complement pathway during the first week after birth. (2020-10-22)

How herpes infection may impair human fetal brain development
Three cell-based models shed light on how herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) infection, which can spread to the fetal brain during pregnancy, may contribute to various neurodevelopmental disabilities and long-term neurological problems into adulthood, according to a study published October 22, 2020 in the open-access journal PLOS Pathogens by Pu Chen and Ying Wu of Wuhan University, and colleagues. (2020-10-22)

Damaged muscles don't just die, they regenerate themselves
Researchers building a model of muscle damage in a cultured system found that components leaking from broken muscle fibers activate ''satellite cells,'' which are muscle stem cells. While attempting to identify the activating proteins, they found that metabolic enzymes, such as GAPDH, rapidly activated quiescent satellite cells and accelerated muscle injury regeneration. This is a highly rational and efficient regeneration mechanism, in which the damaged muscle itself activates satellite cells for regeneration. (2020-10-12)

Why drugs sometimes cause receptor potentiation rather than inhibition
In order to treat certain brain diseases more precisely and with fewer side effects, researchers are focusing on drugs that only inhibit distinct subtypes of the receptors responding to the neurotransmitter glutamate. However, under certain conditions, such drugs can elicit the opposite effect: Rather than inhibiting the receptors as desired, they potentiate their activity. (2020-10-01)

New mechanism of cell survival in chronic lymphocytic leukemia
Researchers at The Wistar Institute unraveled a mechanism employed by chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) cells for their survival. (2020-09-30)

Strong activation of anti-bacterial T cells linked to severe COVID-19
A type of anti-bacterial T cells, so-called MAIT cells, are strongly activated in people with moderate to severe COVID-19 disease, according to a study by researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden that is published in the journal Science Immunology. The findings contribute to increased understanding about how our immune system responds against COVID-19 infection. (2020-09-28)

Decreased protein degradation in cerebellum leads to motor dysfunction
A research team from Kumamoto University, Japan has developed an animal model that reproduces motor dysfunction and cerebellar neurodegeneration similar to that in spinocerebellar ataxia (SCA) by inhibiting chaperone-mediated autophagy (CMA) in cerebellar neurons. Since CMA activity is reduced in cells expressing SCA causing proteins, CMA is expected to become a new therapeutic target for SCA--a disease that currently has no basic treatment. (2020-09-23)

Cannabinoids decrease the metabolism of glucose in the brain
What happens when THC acts on the glial cells named astrocytes ? This research concludes that the activation of CB1 cannabinoid receptors in tmice astrocytes hampers the metabolism of glucose and the production of lactate in the brain; this alters neuronal function and leads to a deterioration in social interaction behaviours. (2020-09-19)

Stop Livin to make lymphoma cells stop living
Researchers at the University of Tsukuba have shown that the protein Livin, an inhibitor of apoptosis or programmed cell death, mediates resistance to immunotherapy in some lymphoma variants. Therapeutically targeting Livin with IAP inhibitors or BET inhibitors may provide a practical strategy for patients with Livin-positive and other refractory B-cell lymphomas. (2020-09-16)

Building bridges: PARP enzymes bring broken DNA together
St. Jude researchers capture the structure of PARP enzymes at work, leading to a new understanding of DNA repair that may aid cancer treatments targeting the process. (2020-09-16)

Signalling research waves red flag for commercial drug target candidate
Researchers at the Babraham Institute, Cambridge, UK, have used their understanding of cellular signalling to highlight a pitfall in an emerging treatment for cancer and inflammation. Developing awareness around these findings will prevent wasted effort and resource being spent on further drug discovery research relating to this drug target by commercial pharmaceutical companies. (2020-09-15)

University of South Carolina study reveals how cannabinoids may be useful to prevent colon cancer
Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) such as Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis are caused by inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract. Patients with IBD are at a higher risk of developing colorectal cancer. A UofSC study shows that THC suppressed inflammation in the colon, preventing the onset of cancers caused by a carcinogen. (2020-09-15)

Artificial intelligence aids gene activation discovery
Scientists have long known that human genes are activated through instructions delivered by the precise order of our DNA. With the aid of artificial intelligence, researchers at UC San Diego have solved a long-standing DNA activation code mystery. Their discovery, which they termed the downstream core promoter region (DPR), could eventually be used to control gene activation in biotechnology and biomedical applications. (2020-09-09)

Brain's immune cells promising cellular target for therapeutics
Inspired by the need for new and better therapies for neurodegenerative diseases, researchers are exploring the link between uncontrolled inflammation within the brain and the brain's immune cells, known as microglia, which are emerging as a promising cellular target because of the prominent role they play in brain inflammation. In APL Bioengineering, the group highlights the design considerations and benefits of creating therapeutic nanoparticles for carrying pharmacological factors directly to the sites of the microglia. (2020-09-08)

Children use both brain hemispheres to understand language, unlike adults
Infants and young children have brains with a superpower, of sorts, say Georgetown University Medical Center neuroscientists. Whereas adults process most discrete neural tasks in specific areas in one or the other of their brain's two hemispheres, youngsters use both the right and left hemispheres to do the same task. The finding suggests a possible reason why children appear to recover from neural injury much easier than adults. (2020-09-07)

Obesity may alter immune system response to COVID-19
Obesity may cause a hyperactive immune system response to COVID-19 infection that makes it difficult to fight off the virus, according to a new manuscript published in the Endocrine Society's journal, Endocrinology. (2020-09-03)

Possible blood-clotting mechanism in COVID-19 found
Why so many COVID-19 patients get blood clots (thrombosis) remains uncertain. But scientists at Uppsala University and the University Hospital have now identified a mechanism they believe to be implicated. A particular protein triggers a part of our immune system that can boost the blood's tendency to coagulate and form clots. The study is now published in Thrombosis and Haemostasis. (2020-09-02)

Brain estrogen is key to brain protection when oxygen is low
When the brain isn't getting enough oxygen, estrogen produced by neurons in both males and females hyperactivates another brain cell type called astrocytes to step up their usual support and protect brain function. (2020-09-01)

Ultraviolet B exposure expands proenkephalin+ regulatory T cells with a healing function
Skin exposure to ultraviolet B (UVB) induces expansion of regulatory T (Treg) cells with immunosuppressive activity. Here researchers found that UVB-expanded skin Treg (UVB-skin Treg) cells had a tissue repair function. UVB-skin Treg cells expressed proenkephalin (PENK) and amphiregulin (AREG), which promoted keratinocyte outgrowth and skin wound healing. Their results provide a new implication in developing a therapy using UVB-skin Treg cells. (2020-09-01)

Researchers find potential to make brain cancers in children respond better to treatment
Research has identified a small molecule compound that can activate the Wnt pathway in non-Wnt subtypes of medulloblastoma, making these aggressive forms of cancer more responsive to therapies. The work also found the Wnt pathway, which has historically been considered cancer-promoting, to function as a cancer inhibitor in certain contexts. (2020-08-28)

Researchers pursue 'hidden pathology' to explain fatigue in multiple sclerosis
In a study published in Neurology Neuroimmunology & Neuroinflammation, investigators from Brigham and Women's Hospital used positron emission technology (PET) imaging to look for brain's immune cells that may become erroneously activated in MS, leading to fatigue. The team describes a potential link to brain inflammation that may help explain the connection between MS and fatigue. (2020-08-26)

New study takes aim at advanced types of non-addictive pain therapies
A team of scientists from ASU's School of Molecular Sciences and the Biodesign Institute have recently published a study in Nature Communications that helps clarify the contributions to an ion channel's temperature - dependent activation. This in turn should aid in the development of new types of non-addictive pain therapies. (2020-08-26)

University of Ky study leads to potential for new treatment approach to Alzheimer's
The paper explains that current therapeutic approaches to the treatment of Alzheimer's disease focus on the major pathological hallmarks of the disease which are amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. They are the requirements for a diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease. However, the authors say there has been an explosion of genetic data suggesting the risk for sporadic Alzheimer's disease is driven by several other factors including neuroinflammation, membrane turnover and storage, and lipid metabolism. (2020-08-25)

Oncotarget: Paradox breaker BRAF inhibitors in BRAF mutant colorectal cancer
Oncotarget Volume 11, Issue 34 features Figure 1, ''BRAF inhibitor-induced changes in cell viability,'' by Pickles, et which reported that the BEACON CRC trial demonstrated a survival advantage over chemotherapy for a combination of targeted agents comprising the potent BRAF inhibitor encorafenib together with cetuximab and binimetinib. (2020-08-25)

Ludwig Chicago study identifies a novel drug target for the control of cancer metastasis
Researchers led by Ludwig Chicago Co-director Ralph Weichselbaum and Ronald Rock of the University of Chicago have identified in preclinical studies a potential drug target for curtailing cancer metastasis. (2020-08-24)

Detailed map of natural killer cells in COVID-19 patients expands understanding of innate immune response to SARS-CoV-2
A new study of 27 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 has provided a detailed map of natural killer (NK) cell responses to SARS-CoV-2 infection, revealing that specific characteristics of NK cell activation associate with different levels of disease severity. (2020-08-21)

Protein structural insights chart the way to improved treatments for heart disease
A team including Wei Liu, assistant professor in ASU's School of Molecular Sciences (SMS) and the Biodesign Institute's Center for Applied Structural Discovery, has published a paper today in Molecular Cell that offers promising details for improved therapeutic treatments for cardiac disease. (2020-08-19)

New mechanism for stroke treatment shows successful proof-of-concept
Stroke is the leading cause of disability in the US; new research from UConn Health suggests a promising treatment for patients by successfully inhibited an important receptor implicated in post-stroke damage and recovery. (2020-08-19)

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