Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh have made a groundbreaking contribution to life science research: Researchers helped a mouse heart to beat again after its own cells were replaced with human heart precursor cells, marking the first time this has ever been done. According to a University of Pittsburgh news article, the researchers say it may soon be possible to take a skin biopsy from a human patient to regenerate an organ able to be transplanted.
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Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh have developed a way to mimic the biological responses of animals such as octopi or cuttlefish, which change their shape in the face of danger, by eliciting a biomimetic response using hydrogels. Hydrogels are used in most contact lenses and microfluidic or fluid-controlled technologies already, but the University of Pittsburgh researchers were able to redesign them to be reconfigured and controlled by light in a self-sustained movement. The study was recently published in the journal Advanced Functional Materials.
A new study at the University of Pennsylvania, published in the journal PLOS ONE, has had researchers develop a variant of the mu opioid receptor that is water-soluble and can be grown in large quantities in bacteria. When the mu opiod receptor binds with opioid molecules, a strong reduction in the sensation of pain occurs. Unfortunately, fatal side effects can occur. According to a University of Pennsylvania news article, researchers at the university sought to address this issue by identifying the hydrophobic amino acids on the exterior of a structured model of the protein.
Researchers at Stony Brook University in collaboration with colleagues at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine used DNA sequencing methods to make a new discovery: the direct causation of exposure to aristolochic acid (AA), which is found in a plant that’s been used in herbal remedies for thousands of years, in the development of urothelial cancer.
Researchers at Columbia University Medical Center recently conducted a study examining brains of a number of different ages donated by people who died without signs of neurologic disease. During the course of the investigation, researchers came to the conclusion that a certain hippocampus gene’s function deteriorates in older people. The researchers believe that age-related memory loss is distinct condition from Alzheimer’s or pre-Alzheimer’s, and that the condition may be treatable in the future.
Clinical trials were recently conducted and proved promising for a Lyme Disease vaccine developed by science researchers at Stony Brook University. The vaccine proved to produce a large number of antibodies against all targeted species of Borrelia, which causes Lyme Disease in Europe and the United States. Baxter International S.A., who worked with Stony Brook University researchers to develop the vaccine, conducted the clinical trials.