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A Single Treatment for a Variety of Neurological Disorders

Multiple neurological diseases could be targeted by a single antibody treatment
Multiple neurological diseases could be targeted by a single antibody treatment (Credit:vampy1/Depositphotos)

Scientists believe that the underlying cause of many neurological diseases, including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, is the buildup of misfolded protein clusters in the brain. A new antibody treatment developed by a team at the NYU School of Medicine has the potential to target a feature of these misfolded proteins shared by several different diseases, promising a possible single treatment for a variety of neurological disorders. read more

A Cancer Vaccine Could be Coming

A golden nanostar, seen here under an electron microscope, is a key part of a new ...
A golden nanostar, seen here under an electron microscope, is a key part of a new treatment that might eventually lead to a cancer vaccine (Credit: Duke University)

In experiments on mice, researchers at Duke University have found that combining two different techniques for fighting cancer is more effective than either treatment is on its own. In one case, the mouse’s immune system not only destroyed the tumor, but stayed strong enough to ward off a later injection of cancer cells, raising hopes that the strategy could one day lead to a viable cancer vaccine.

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This Little Piggy Grew an Organ

Growing human transplant organs in pigs has become a more realistic prospect after scientists used advanced gene editing to remove threatening viruses from the animals’ DNA.

Porcine endogenous retroviruses are permanently embedded in the pig genome but research has shown they can infect human cells, posing a potential hazard.

The existence of the virus has been a major stumbling block preventing the development of genetically engineered pigs to provide kidneys and other organs for transplant into human patients.

That hurdle may now have been cleared away, according to new research reported in the journal Science.

Researchers at Harvard University and a private company used the precision gene editing tool Crispr-Cas9 combined with gene repair technology to deactivate 100 percent of the virus in a line of pig cells.

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Mapping Junk DNA Could Cure Disease

Diabetes Cure Right Around the Corner?

The new technique cures diabetes in mice by bypassing the immune system that attacks beta cells
The new technique cures diabetes in mice by bypassing the immune system that attacks beta cells (Credit: JacobSt/Depositphotos)

According to the Center for Disease Control, 1.25 million people suffer from type 1 diabetes in the US alone. So far, it can only be managed with diet and regular doses of insulin, but scientists at UT Health San Antonio have invented a way of curing the disease in mice that may one day do the same for humans even with type 2 diabetes. read more

Cancer Killing Sperm

Sperm that’s been loaded with chemotherapy drugs could be used to fight cancer in women.

The guided missile technique involves using drug-treated sperm to deliver the medicines to tumors deep inside the body.

The revolutionary treatment could help thousands of women affected by cancers of the reproductive system, which can be reached by the drug- carrying sperm. Cancer of the womb kills more than 2,000 women a year in the UK and cervical cancer claims the lives of around 900.

Treatment includes chemotherapy to try to poison the cancer cells before they spread.

But this also damages healthy cells. For years, scientists have been exploring ways to deliver toxic anti-cancer medicines directly to tumor sites, leaving healthy tissues unscathed.

One method used bacteria as a form of transport, as they can penetrate the body easily.

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Why is the Freedom Caucus Enemy Number 1

from IBD: 

For a week now, the conservative House Freedom Caucus has been taking hits for derailing the Republican effort to repeal and replace ObamaCare. But why are moderate/liberal Republicans who refused to support the bill getting a free pass?

The Freedom Caucus was the most vociferous in its opposition to the American Health Care Act — or at least its criticisms of the bill attracted the most attention.

The Wall Street Journal editorial page blamed the group, calling it the “Freedom-From-Reality Caucus.” CNN reported that “its members … are Public Enemy No. 1 on Capitol Hill.”

President Trump went so far as to tweet that “The Freedom Caucus will hurt the entire Republican agenda if they don’t get on the team, & fast. We must fight them, & Dems, in 2018!” read more

Spider Venom May Help Stroke Victims

The Australian funnel-web spider could prove a lifesaver for future stroke victims after a peptide in...
The Australian funnel-web spider could prove a lifesaver for future stroke victims after a peptide in its venom was discovered to reduce brain damage in a study involving rats(Credit:pelooyen/Depositphotos)

The Australian funnel-web spider is generally something you’d want to steer well clear of, but the creepy crawly could soon be helping out stroke victims. A peptide found in the spider’s venom has been shown to reduce the brain damage that occurs in the hours following a stroke, with early preclinical studies involving rats having delivered extremely promising results.

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Magnets can Spot Cancer

Tiny magnetic beads coated in sugar could help doctors to check if a cancer has spread. Once injected into the patient, the beads can be detected using a handheld magnetic wand — similar to a metal detector — and are used to identify the lymph nodes nearest to the cancer.

The lymph nodes form part of the lymphatic system, which drains fluid from tissues all over the body back into the bloodstream. If cancerous cells get into this system, the disease can then spread to other parts of the body.

The key to determining if cancer has spread is identifying the sentinel node — the lymph node that is nearest the tumour.

Tiny magnetic beads coated in sugar could help doctors to check if a cancer has spread
Tiny magnetic beads coated in sugar could help doctors to check if a cancer has spread

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Bone Cells can Suppress Appetite

A recent discovery by researchers from the Columbia University Medical Centre revealed a previously unknown appetite-regulating...
A recent discovery by researchers from the Columbia University Medical Centre revealed a previously unknown appetite-regulating mechanism that is secreted by bone cells(Credit: Dimdimich/Depositphotos)

There has been plenty of recent research focusing on how your gut bacteria can send messages to your brain controlling appetite and feelings of satiation, but a recent discovery by researchers from the Columbia University Medical Centre has revealed a previously unknown appetite-regulating mechanism that is secreted by bone cells. read more