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Medical

Gene editing could provide a cure for HIV

While antiretroviral drugs do a good job of keeping HIV infections under control, scientists are working hard to come up with a full cure for the condition. A team of researchers from the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University is making real progress in that regard, successfully testing a gene editing system, demonstrating its ability to eliminate the virus from DNA in human cells grown in culture.Read More

Protective bubble ferries prostate cancer drugs to their target

Research has uncovered a number of promising drug targets to halt the progression of prostate cancer, including proteins that inhibit the immune response to molecules that drive growth of a tumor's blood vessels. By taking aim at one protein in particular, scientists have been able slow the growth of prostate cancer in mice and also activate a kill switch in the tumor's cells.Read More

Scientists stumble on nerve cell that tells mice when to stop eating

Obesity is a big health problem, affecting more than one third – or 78.6 million – adults in the United States, and costing more than US$140 billion dollars to treat every year. A new breakthrough in our understanding of how the brain tells the us that we're full could one day lead to all new tools for tackling the widespread condition. The researchers made the discovery by chance while studying learning and memory systems, instead identifying a new nerve type responsible for controlling appetite in mice.
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Snake venom shapes as antidote for Alzheimer’s

A viper's venom would usually be something to steer clear of if you're at all concerned about your health, but new research suggests it may in fact boost the wellbeing of those with Alzheimer's disease. Australian scientists have discovered a molecule in this predator's poison that slows the onset of Alzheimer's, working to break down plaques in the brain that lead to dementia and typify the condition. Read More

Cavities can't hide from tooth-zapping device

Dental cavities are one of those things where the sooner you catch them, the better. Dentists' visual inspections and x-rays certainly help, but a new hand-held device is designed to detect them even earlier. It's called the Ortek ECD (for Early Cavity Detection), and it hunts cavities using electricity.Read More

Neurodegenerative disorders may meet their match with 3D micro-scaffold

Injecting reprogrammed stem cells into the brain to tackle neurodegenerative diseases isn't a new idea, but a new technique might significantly improve the effectiveness of the treatment. A team of sceintists, led by researchers at Rutgers University, has developed and conducted successful animal tests of a three-dimensional polymer micro-scaffold that dramatically improves cell survival rates following transplantation.Read More

Osteoporosis in mice reversed with single injection of stem cells

Age-related osteoporosis, where the bone structure deteriorates and becomes more vulnerable to fracture, is said to affect more than 200 million people worldwide. Drugs are available to treat or delay the condition, but a cure has remained elusive. Much-needed help may now be on the way, however, with scientists discovering healthy bone structure can be restored in mice with a single injection of stem cells.Read More

Cyborg cardiac patch offers alternative to heart transplants

An engineered cardiac patch has been created that incorporates human cells with flexible electronics and a nanocomposite structure to not only replace damaged heart tissue, but also provide remote monitoring, electrical stimulation, and the release of medication on demand. Using electroactive polymers and a combination of biological and engineered parts, the patch contracts and expands just like normal human heart tissue, but regulates those actions with the precision of a finely-tuned machine.Read More

New molecule has stem cells primed for harvesting within the hour

Securing a match for a bone marrow transplant to treat a cancer patient can be difficult enough, but it is not all smooth sailing from that point either. Preparing a donor's stem cells for harvesting involves a lot of time and injections of growth factor to boost stem cell populations ahead of the procedure. But Australian scientists have now unearthed a more direct route, discovering a new molecule that entices an adequate number of stem cells out into the blood stream to make for a much easier, swifter collection.Read More

Smart diabetes patch gets smarter

Implanting beta cells has been a promising, yet problematic approach to treating diabetes. These cells live in the pancreas and, in healthy people, secrete vital insulin to regulate blood sugar levels. But in sufferers of diabetes they don't quite work as required. Building on previous work on a smart insulin patch, scientists have now discovered a way of delivering the effects of these cells in a way that overcomes some of the complications. Read More

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