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Operation of ancient biological clock uncovered
A team of Dutch and German researchers has discovered the operation of one of the oldest biological clocks in the world, which is crucial for life on earth as we know it. The researchers applied a new combination of cutting-edge research techniques. They discovered how the biological clock in cyanobacteria works in detail. Important to understand life, because cyanobacteria were the first organisms on earth producing oxygen via photosynthesis. The results of their research will be published in Science. (2017-03-16)

NTU Singapore and ELID Technology develop robot to wash and paint high-rise buildings
An innovative robotic system that can clean building exteriors using water jets or give new coats of paint is now ready to serve customers in Singapore. (2017-03-15)

Atomic map of malaria drug gives it new life
Researchers have mapped how the malaria drug mefloquine works, providing a route to make effective alternatives and combat rising drug resistance. (2017-03-13)

How to brew high-value fatty acids with brewer's yeast
Researchers at Goethe University Frankfurt have succeeded in producing fatty acids in large quantities from sugar or waste containing sugar with the help of yeasts. (2017-03-13)

NYU chemists color world of 3-D crystals with advances in self-assembly
A team of New York University chemists has created self-assembled, three-dimensional DNA crystals that can bind a separate, dye-bearing strand -- a breakthrough that enhances the functionality of these tiny building blocks. (2017-03-13)

Tianjin team makes breakthrough in synthetic yeast project
Tianjin University's synthetic biology team has completed the recreation of the yeast chromosomes synV and synX with the two studies published in Science. (2017-03-09)

How exercise -- interval training in particular -- helps your mitochondria stave off old age
Researchers have long suspected that the benefits of exercise extend down to the cellular level, but know relatively little about which exercises help cells rebuild key organelles that deteriorate with aging. A study published in Cell Metabolism found that exercise -- and in particular high-intensity interval training in aerobic exercises such as biking and walking -- caused cells to make more proteins for their energy-producing mitochondria and their protein-building ribosomes, effectively stopping aging at the cellular level. (2017-03-07)

Biological system with light switch: New findings from Graz, Austria
For the first time ever, researchers at Graz University of Technology and the Medical University of Graz in Austria have managed to functionally characterize the three-dimensional interaction between red-light receptors and enzymatic effectors. The results, with implications for optogenetics, have been published in Science Advances. (2017-03-03)

Molecular structure of the cell nucleoskeleton revealed for the first time
Using 3-D electron microscopy, structural biologists from the University of Zurich succeeded in elucidating the architecture of the lamina of the cell nucleus at molecular resolution for the first time. This scaffold stabilizes the cell nucleus in higher eukaryotes and is involved in organizing, activating and duplicating the genetic material. Diseases such as muscular dystrophy and premature aging, caused by mutations in the lamin gene, the major constituent of the lamina, can now be studied more effectively. (2017-03-01)

Unique structure of African swine fever virus enzyme may allow drug development
A DNA-copying protein from a lethal pig virus has a unique structure that may offer a target for drugs designed to combat this important agricultural disease, according to a study publishing Feb. 28 in the open-access journal PLOS Biology by Yiqing Chen and colleagues at Fudan University in Shanghai, China. (2017-02-28)

Existence of a new quasiparticle demonstrated
How do molecules rotate in a solvent? Answering this question is a complicated task since the rotation is perturbed by a large number of surrounding atoms, requiring large-scale computer simulations which are sometimes infeasible. Now, Mikhail Lemeshko from IST Austria has proven that angulons -- quasiparticles he proposed two years ago -- do in fact form when a molecule is immersed in superfluid helium. This offers a quick and simple description for rotation of molecules in solvents. (2017-02-28)

Detailed Las Vegas earthquake site classifications could lower construction costs
Results of a massive new project to map and classify the earthquake shaking potential across most of the Las Vegas metropolitan area will help developers there build in safer and less expensive ways. (2017-02-27)

New technology offers fast peptide synthesis
MIT researchers have designed a machine that can rapidly produce large quantities of customized peptides. This technology could help researchers rapidly generate new peptide drugs to test on diseases including cancer, diabetes, and bacterial infections. (2017-02-27)

First evidence of rocky planet formation in Tatooine system
Evidence of planetary debris surrounding a double sun, 'Tatooine-like' system has been found for the first time by a UCL-led team of researchers. (2017-02-27)

38,000-year-old engravings confirm ancient origins of technique used by Seurat, Van Gogh
A newly discovered trove of 16 engraved and otherwise modified limestone blocks, created 38,000 years ago, confirms the ancient origins of the pointillist techniques later adopted by 19th and 20th century artists such as Georges Seurat, Vincent Van Gogh, Camille Pissarro, and Roy Lichtenstein. (2017-02-24)

Size matters... and structure too! New tool predicts the interaction of proteins and RNA
Researchers at the Centre for Genomic Regulation developed Global Score, a method that allows, for the first time, to predict protein interactions with long non-coding RNAs. This algorithm helps scientists prioritize binding partners for experimental validation, which will contribute to our understanding of the role of long non-coding RNAs in normal cell function and in disease. (2017-02-24)

Study reveals PGK1 enzyme as therapeutic target for deadliest brain cancer
Discovery of a dual role played by the enzyme phosphoglycerate kinase 1 (PGK1) may indicate a new therapeutic target for glioblastoma, an often fatal form of brain cancer, according to researchers at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. (2017-02-23)

Computing with biochemical circuits made easy
A software tool and a systematic wet-lab procedure proven in practice are an advance in the design and construction of circuits made of DNA. (2017-02-23)

Loyola medical research center receives Green Building Award
Loyola University Chicago's Center for Translational Research and Education (CTRE) has received the prestigious LEED® gold certification from the US Green Building Council. (2017-02-22)

Metabolism drives growth and division of cancer cells
Nobel Prize laureate Otto H. Warburg observed in the 1920s that tumor cells radically change their metabolism. This process, termed 'Warburg Effect,' was neglected until recently by cancer research, but latest results show ist fundamental importance for the development of aggressive tumors. Richard Moriggl from the VetmeduniVienna now published in Leukemia how the tumor promoter STAT5 integrates metabolic signals that contribute to oncogenic transformation and may have thus identified a new target to tackle cancer. (2017-02-20)

Digital fabrication in architecture
Society faces enormous challenges in constructing high-quality, future-oriented built environments. Construction sites today look much like the building sites did at the beginning of the 20th century. Current research on digital fabrication in architecture indicates that the development and integration of innovative digital technologies within architectural and construction processes could transform the building industry -- on the verge of a building industry 4.0. Digital technologies in architecture and construction could increase productivity creating new jobs. (2017-02-17)

Looking for the next leap in rechargeable batteries
USC researchers may have just found a solution for one of the biggest stumbling blocks to the next wave of rechargeable batteries -- small enough for cellphones and powerful enough for cars. (2017-02-17)

Ceres hosts organic compounds, and they formed on the asteroid, not beyond
Aliphatic organic compounds -- carbon-based building blocks that may have a role in the chemistry that creates life -- have been detected for the first time on Ceres, an asteroid and dwarf planet, a new study reveals. (2017-02-16)

Is your big data messy? We're making an app for that
Vizier, software under development by a University at Buffalo-led research team, aims to proactively catch big data errors. The project, backed by a $2.7 million National Science Foundation grant, launched in January. Like Excel, Vizier will allow users to explore, clean, curate and visualize data in meaningful ways, as well as spot errors and offer solutions. But unlike spreadsheet software, Vizier is intended for much larger datasets; i.e., millions or billions of data points. (2017-02-16)

Illuminating the contacts
Using super-resolution microscopy, an international research team led by Assistant Professor Pakorn (Tony) Kanchanawong from the Mechanobiology Institute, Singapore (MBI) at the National University of Singapore (NUS) and the Department of Biomedical Engineering at NUS, as well as Dr Cristina Bertocchi, Research Fellow at MBI, has revealed, for the first time, how cadherin-based cell-cell contacts are organised. (2017-02-15)

X-ray pulses reveal structure of viral cocoon
An international team of scientists has used high-intensity X-ray pulses to determine the structure of the crystalline protein envelope of an insect virus. The tiny viruses with their crystal casing are by far the smallest protein crystals ever analyzed using X-ray crystallography. This opens up new opportunities in the study of protein structures, as the team headed by DESY scientist Henry Chapman reports in the Proceedings of the US National Academy of Sciences. (2017-02-13)

Dwarf star 200 light years away contains life's building blocks
Many scientists believe the Earth was initially dry and that water, carbon and nitrogen -- the building blocks for life -- likely came as a result of collisions with objects that began their lives in the cold outer reaches of our solar system. Today, UCLA scientists report discovery of the existence of just such an object -- one that once orbited a neighboring star. (2017-02-09)

New mechanobiology technique to stop cancer cell migration
OIST researchers have synthesized a molecule that targets the membranes of cervical cancer cells to block their migration. (2017-02-09)

Refined method offers new piece in the cancer puzzle
A special spectrometry method that is normally used in analyses of computer chips, lacquers and metals has been further developed at the University of Gothenburg so that it can help researchers better detect harmful cells in the body. (2017-02-08)

Largest undersea landslide revealed on the Great Barrier Reef
James Cook University scientists have helped discover the remnants of a massive undersea landslide on the Great Barrier Reef, approximately 30 times the volume of Uluru. (2017-02-07)

Zika virus blindfolds immune alarm cells
Dendritic cells are 'sentinel' cells that alert the rest of the immune system when they detect viral infection. When Zika virus infects them, it shuts down interferon signaling, one route for mustering the antiviral troops. However, another antiviral pathway called RIG-I-like receptor (RLR) signaling is left intact and could be a target for immunity-boosting therapies. (2017-02-02)

Three magnetic states for each hole
Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for Computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ('antidot') three magnetic states can be configured. (2017-02-02)

Scientists determine precise 3-D location, identity of all 23,000 atoms in a nanoparticle
Scientists used one of the world's most powerful electron microscopes to map the precise location and chemical type of 23,000 atoms in an extremely small particle made of iron and platinum. Insights gained from the particle's structure could lead to new ways to improve its magnetic performance for use in high-density, next-generation hard drives. (2017-02-01)

Scientists step closer to developing new drug in fight against antimicrobial resistance
Scientists have for the first time determined the molecular structure of a new antibiotic which could hold the key to tackling drug resistant bacteria. (2017-01-31)

Engineered intrinsically disordered proteins provide biomedical insights
Biomedical researchers have engineered the first examples of biomimetic structures composed from a mysterious class of proteins that lack any sort of internal structure. In a paper published on Jan. 30 in the journal Nature Chemistry, researchers from Duke University, the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and The University of New Mexico reveal the ability to control the self-assembly and disassembly of these structures in an organized manner. (2017-01-30)

Practice makes perfect, and 'overlearning' locks it in
People who continued to train on a visual task for 20 minutes past the point of mastery locked in that learning, shielding it from interference by new learning, a new study in Nature Neuroscience shows. (2017-01-30)

Plant regulatory proteins 'tagged' with sugar
New work reveals that the process of synthesizing many important master proteins in plants involves extensive modification, or 'tagging' by sugars after the protein is assembled. Their work uncovers both similarity and distinction between plants and animals in their use of this protein modification. (2017-01-30)

How water can split into two liquids below zero
Did you know that water can still remain liquid below zero degrees Celsius? It is called supercooled water and is present in refrigerators. At even smaller temperatures, supercooled water could exist as a cocktail of two distinct liquids. Unfortunately, the presence of ice often prevents us from observing this phenomenon. So physicists had the idea of replicating the tetrahedral shape of water molecules and thus removing the interference of ice formation. (2017-01-25)

Murine study finds potential boost for ovarian cancer drug Olaparib
Researchers from the Chinese Academy of Sciences have discovered that the metabolic enzyme phosphoglycerate mutase 1 (PGAM1) helps cancer cells repair their DNA and found that inhibiting PGAM1 sensitizes tumors to the cancer drug Olaparib (Lynparza). Their findings, which have been published in The Journal of Cell Biology, suggest that this FDA-approved ovarian cancer medicine has the potential to treat a wider range of cancer types than currently indicated. (2017-01-25)

What holds the heart together
Our hearts beat a life long. With every beat our heart muscle contracts and expands. How this can work throughout an entire life remains largely a mystery. Researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have now measured the forces acting between the building blocks titin and ╬▒-actinin which stabilize the muscle. (2017-01-24)

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