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Image: Trophozoites of Entamoeba histolytica with ingested erythrocytes that appear as dark inclusions in this trichrome stained slide (Photo courtesy of the CDC - [US] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).

Entamoeba hystolytica Manipulates Host Ion Transport Proteins to Cause Cell Death

A team of molecular microbiologists has found that immunity to infection by the parasitic amoeba Entamoeba hystolytica could be induced in humans by using RNAi technology to block the genes controlling the activity of potassium ion transporter proteins.  More...
06 Oct 2015
Image: Comparison of auditory hair cell pathology of murine cochlear tissue explants upon incubation with aminoglycosides paromomycin (PAR) or compound-3, examining by microscopy the cochlear basal-turn region, the area most sensitive to aminoglycoside damage. Staining for actin with rhodamine phalloidin shows the stereocilia and outline of three rows of outer hair cells (OHC) and one row of inner hair cells (IHC). Control (saline only) and treatment at both concentrations of compound-3 (22 μM and 33 μM) left OHC morphology intact, whereas 22 μM PAR caused significant loss of OHCs and 33 μM PAR caused their destruction (Photo courtesy of Shalev M, et al., 2011, and the journal Nucleic Acids Research).

Selective Ribosome-Targeting Drug with Low Ototoxicity Could Provide Safer Treatment Option for Leishmaniasis

In a multidisciplinary biological study, researchers have shed new light on the mechanism of action of a potent drug for leishmaniasis, the natural aminoglycoside paromomycin, and have found that a new synthetic derivative of PAR may provide a far lower risk of irreversible hearing loss side-effects, probably via its more selective targeting of cytosolic (vs. mitochondrial) ribosomes.  More...
02 Sep 2015
Image: Artist\'s conception of an adeno-associated viral capsid in formation by ancestral sequence reconstruction (Photo courtesy of Dr. Eric Zinn, Harvard University Medical School).

Ancient Viruses Built from Computer Models May Improve Gene Therapy Delivery

An advanced computer modeling strategy was used to design ancient forms of adeno-associated viruses, which were then synthesized in the laboratory for use as potential delivery vectors for gene therapy.  More...
11 Aug 2015

New Biomarkers May Serve as Companion Diagnostics for Patients Being Treated with IL-2

A transcriptional-profiling study has identified biomarkers related to efficacy of interleukin-2 treatment and has identified patient age as a key determining factor of clinical efficacy.   More...
02 Aug 2015
Image: New lung cells are continuously created to replace the damaged ones: Lung tissue six weeks after stem cell transplantation (left) and 16 weeks after transplantation (right). Cells that originated in the transplanted stem cells are green, as opposed to the uncolored host lung cells (Photo courtesy of the Weizmann Institute of Science).

Bone Marrow Transplantation Techniques Are Successfully Adapted for Lung Repair

A new approach for repairing the damage caused to lung tissue by diseases such as emphysema, bronchitis, asthma, and cystic fibrosis is based on transplanting embryonic stem cells into damaged lungs that have been conditioned by radiation treatment.  More...
29 Jul 2015
Image: Using a transmission electron microscope (TEM): (A) a bare nanoparticle, (B) a nanoparticle prepared for coating and (C) a nanoparticle coated with a thin layer of drug-delivering hydrogels (Photo courtesy of Dr. Jennifer West, Duke University).

Drug Augmented, Light-Activated Nanoparticles Effectively Kill Cancer Cells

The inclusion of a chemotherapeutic agent within a novel class of light-sensitive nanoparticles enhanced their ability to kill cancer cells.  More...
28 Jul 2015
Image: Nanoscale artificial antigen presenting cells (nano-aAPCs) bound to receptors on the T-cell surface (Photo courtesy of Dr. Karlo Perica, Johns Hopkins University).

Promising Cancer Immunotherapy Method Relies on Artificial Magnetic Antigen Presenting Cells

Cancer researchers have developed a method based on magnetic nanoparticles that enables the rapid extraction, enrichment, and expansion of a T-cell population that shows great promise as a tool for immunotherapy.  More...
26 Jul 2015
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