Bioengineering

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Muscle subsets orchestrate and configure regrowth

Muscle subsets orchestrate and configure regrowth
Researchers at the Whitehead Institute have illuminated an important role for different subtypes of muscle cells in orchestrating the process of tissue regeneration. In a paper appearing online in Nature, they reveal that a subtype of muscle fibres in flatworms is required for triggering the activity of genes that initiate the regeneration program. Notably, in the absence of these muscles, regeneration fails to proceed.
23rd November 2017

The future of cell culture is in continuous bioprocess

The future of cell culture is in continuous bioprocess
A technique which revolutionises cell culture by allowing the continuous production and collection of cells, has been developed by scientists at Newcastle University. The process removes the limit on the number of cells that can be grown in a culture dish. The research published in ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces reports how the Newcastle team have developed a coating that allows individual stromal cells to 'peel away' from the surface on which they are grown.
21st November 2017

Soft biological tissue deforms differently under tension

Soft biological tissue deforms differently under tension
  Engineers at ETH Zurich have discovered that soft biological tissue deforms very differently under tension than previously assumed. Their findings are already being put to use in medical research projects.
20th November 2017


Modified blood stem cells reverse diabetes in mice

Modified blood stem cells reverse diabetes in mice
Researchers at Boston Children's Hospital have successfully reversed type 1 diabetes in a mouse model by infusing blood stem cells pre-treated to produce more of a protein called PD-L1, which is deficient in mice (and people) with type 1 diabetes. The cells curbed the autoimmune reaction in cells from both mice and humans and reversed hyperglycemia in diabetic mice. Findings were published in Science Translational Medicine.
16th November 2017

One step closer to the artificial heart

One step closer to the artificial heart
An artificial heart would be an absolute lifesaver for people with cardiac failure. However, to recreate the complex organ in the laboratory, one would first need to work out how to grow multi-layered, living tissues. Researchers at Empa have now come one step closer to this goal: by means of a spraying process, they have created functioning muscle fibres.
15th November 2017

Nanoshells could deliver chemo with fewer side effects

Nanoshells could deliver chemo with fewer side effects
Researchers investigating ways to deliver high doses of cancer-killing drugs inside tumours have shown they can use a laser and light-activated gold nanoparticles to remotely trigger the release of approved cancer drugs inside cancer cells in laboratory cultures. The study by researchers at Rice University and Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine appears in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
10th November 2017

Boy is given new skin thanks to gene therapy

Boy is given new skin thanks to gene therapy
A medical team at the Ruhr-Universität Bochum's burn unit and the Center for Regenerative Medicine at the University of Modena (Italy) were the first ever to successfully treat a child suffering from extensive skin damage using transplants derived from genetically modified stem cells. The boy is a so-called butterfly child: he suffers from epidermolysis bullosa, a genetic skin disease that had destroyed approximately 80% of his epidermis.
9th November 2017

A recipe to make human blood-brain barrier

A recipe to make human blood-brain barrier
  A critical anatomical structure, the barrier is the brain’s first and most comprehensive line of defense. But in addition to protecting the brain, it also is involved in disease and effectively blocks many of the small-molecule drugs that might make effective therapies for a host of neurological conditions, including such things as stroke, trauma and cancer.
9th November 2017

Model reveals possibility of pumping antibiotics into bacteria

Model reveals possibility of pumping antibiotics into bacteria
Researchers in the University of Wisconsin–Madison Department of Biochemistry have discovered that a cellular pump known to move drugs like antibiotics out of E. coli bacteria has the potential to bring them in as well, opening lines of research into combating the bacteria. The discovery could rewrite almost 50 years of thinking about how these types of transporters function in the cell.
8th November 2017

Transforming fibrils into crystals

Transforming fibrils into crystals
Amyloid fibrils are infamous for the role they play in serious neurological diseases in humans, such as Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s. One trigger for Alzheimer’s disease is the misfolding and aggregation of proteins such as tau and ABeta. This causes the formation of tiny fibrils that then accumulate in the brain. Specialists refer to these fibres as amyloid fibrils.
7th November 2017


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