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With increases in asthma and other allergic diseases centered on industrialized nations, a recent hypothesis suggested that the disappearance of specific microorganisms that populate the human body due to modern hygiene practices might be to blame. Now researchers claim they have confirmed this hypothesis by proving that a certain gastric bacterium provides reliable protection against allergy-induced asthma.

The hygiene hypothesis states that modern hygiene practices and overuse of antibiotics have led to a lack of early childhood exposure to infectious agents, symbiotic microorganisms and parasites, which has suppressed the natural development of the body's immune system. Scientists from the University of Zurich and the University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz are now saying that the increase in asthma could be put down to the specific disappearance of the gastric bacterium Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) from Western societies.

Electron micrograph of H. pylori

Electron micrograph of H. pylori

H. pylori is a bacterium that is resistant to gastric acid and it is estimated that it could currently infect around half of the world's population. While it can cause gastritis, gastric and duodenal ulcers, and stomach cancer under certain conditions, over 80 percent of individuals infected with the bacterium are asymptomatic. However, even if the patient doesn't show any symptoms, H. pylori is often killed off with antibiotics as a precaution.

For their study, the researchers infected mice with H. pylori bacteria at different stages of their development. They found that mice that were infected at just a few days old developed immunological tolerance to the bacterium and reacted insignificantly or not at all to strong, asthma-inducing allergens. Mice that were not infected until they had reached adulthood, however, had a much weaker defense.

"Early infection impairs the maturation of the dendritic cells and triggers the accumulation of regulatory T-cells that are crucial for the suppression of asthma," explains Anne Müller, a professor of molecular cancer research at the University of Zurich.

The researchers also found that if the regulatory T-cells were transferred from infected mice to uninfected mice, they too enjoyed effective protection against allergy-induced asthma. Additionally, mice that had been infected early lost their resistance to asthma-inducing allergens in H. pylori was killed off in them using antibiotics.

According to lung and allergy specialist Christian Taube, a senior physician at III. Medical Clinic of the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, the new results that are published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation confirm the hypothesis that the increase in allergic asthma in industrial nations is linked to the widespread use of antibiotics and the subsequent disappearance of micro-organisms that permanently populate the human body.

"The study of these fundamental mechanisms is extremely important for us to understand asthma and be able to develop preventative and therapeutic strategies later on," he said.

Source: GizMag

 

A new experiment looks at the shapes of healthy and cancerous cells taken from the human cervix and has attempted to quantify the geometrical differences between them. The research, carried out at Clarkson University in Potsdam, N.Y. finds that the cancerous cells show more fractal behavior than healthy cells.

 

Fractal is the name used for heavily indented curves or shapes that look very similar over a variety of size scales. For example, the edge of a snowflake, when observed with a microscope, has a lacelike structure that looks the same whether at the level of a millimeter, or a tenth of a millimeter, or even a thousandth of a millimeter. The position of galaxy clusters in the sky seems to be fractal. So does the snaking geometry of streams in a river valley, or the foliage of leaves on a tree. The shape of coastlines and clouds reveals a fractal, "self-similar" geometry. Even the "drip" paintings of Jackson Pollack are fractal.

Fractal geometry apparently also appears in the human body. The pattern of heartbeats over long intervals looks fractal. How about the geometry of cells? And could the observation of fractal geometry be used to identify cancer cells?

Igor Sokolov and his Clarkson colleagues used an atomic force microscope to view cells down to the level of one nanometer, or a billionth of a meter (one-millionth of a millimeter). Just as the needle on a record player rides over the groove of a rotating vinyl record to read out the music stored on the record's surface, so the sharp needle forming the heart of an atomic force microscope rides above a sample reading out the contours of matter just below at nearly atomic resolution. 

Previous studies of cells at the microscopic level produced two-dimensional maps of the cells' surface. The new study produces not only three-dimensional surface maps of geometry. But with their atomic force microscope device the Clarkson scientists can also map properties such as the rigidity of the cells at various points on its surface or a cell's adhesion, its ability to cling to a nearby object, such as the needle probe of the atomic force microscope itself.  

The Clarkson measurements show that cancerous cells feature a consistent fractal geometry, while healthy cells show some fractal properties but in an ambiguous way. The fact that the adhesive map is fractal for cancerous cells but not for healthy cells was not known before.

Being able to differentiate clearly between healthy and cancerous cells would be important step toward a definitive diagnosis of cancer. Can a fractal measurement of cells serve as such a test for malignancy?

Sokolov believes it can. 

"The existing cytological screening tests for cervical cancer, like Pap smear, and liquid-based cytology, are effective and non-invasive, but are insufficiently accurate," said Sokolov. 

Searching for fractals may help cancer cell testing

These tests determine the presence of suspicious abnormal cells with sensitivity levels ranging from 80 percent all the way down to 30 percent, for an average of 47 percent. 

The fractal criterion used in the Clarkson work was 100 percent accurate in identifying the cancerous nature of 300 cells derived from 12 human subjects, Sokolov said. He intends now to undertake a much wider test. 

"We expect that the methodology based on our finding will substantially increase the accuracy of early non-invasive detection of cervical cancer using cytological tests," Sokolov said. 

Sokolov asserts that physics-based methods, such as his atomic force microscope maps of cells, will complement or even exceed in detection ability the more traditional biochemical analysis carried out at the single cell level.

"We also plan to study how fractal behavior changes during cancerous transformation, when a normal cell turns into a fully developed malignant cell, one with a high degree of invasiveness and the ability to reproduce itself uncontrollably," Sokolov added.

Robert Austin, an expert on biological physics at Princeton University in N.J., believes it is important to learn more about the properties that make cancer cells lethal, such as their ability to metastasize, to invade new parts of the body. About the Clarkson paper, which is appearing in the journal Physical Review Letters, Austin said "Perhaps this is a step in the direction of connecting physical aspects of cancer cells with the biological reality that their proliferation and invasiveness is what makes them deadly."

Source: Inside Science News Service

 

But to sustain that high growth rate into the next decade, the industry will have to start tapping offshore wind resources, creating a need for wind turbines that are larger, lower-maintenance, and deliver more power with less weight.

 

To support research in this area, the U.S. Department of Energy has awarded $7.5 million to six projects, each aiming to develop advanced drivetrains for wind turbines up to 10 megawatts in size. Five of the projects use direct-drive, or gearless, drivetrain technology to increase reliability, and at least two use superconductivity technologies for increased efficiencies and lower weight.

Current designs can't be scaled up economically. Most of the more than 25,000 wind turbines deployed across the United States have a power rating of three megawatts or less and contain complex gearbox systems. The gearboxes match the slow speed of the turbine rotor (between 15 to 20 rotations per minute) to the 2,000 rotations per minute required by their generators. Higher speeds allow for more compact and less expensive generators, but conventional gearboxes—a complex interaction of wheels and bearings—need regular maintenance and are prone to failure, especially at higher speeds.

On land, where turbines are more accessible, gearbox maintenance issues can be tolerated. In rugged offshore environments, the cost of renting a barge and sending crews out to fix or maintain a wind-ravaged machine can be prohibitive. "A gearbox that isn't there is the most reliable gearbox," says Fort Felker, direct of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's wind technology center.

To increase reliability and reduce maintenance costs, a number of companies—among them Enercon and Siemens of Germany, France's Alstom and China's Goldwind Global—have developed direct-drive or "gearless" drivetrains. In such a setup, the rotor shaft is attached directly to the generator, and they both turn at the same speed. But this introduces a new challenge: increased weight.

To achieve the power output of a comparable gearbox-based system, a direct-drive system must have a larger internal diameter that increases the radius—and therefore the speed—at which its magnets rotate around coils to generate current. This also means greater reliance on increasingly costly rare-earth metals used to make permanent magnets.

Kiruba Haran, manager of the electric machines lab at GE Global Research, one recipient of the DOE funding, says direct-drive systems get disproportionately heavier as their power rating increases. A four-megawatt generator might weight 85 tons, but at eight megawatts, it would approach 200 tons.

GE believes it can develop an eight-megawatt generator that weights only 50 tons by adapting the superconducting electromagnets used in magnetic resonance imaging. Unlike a permanent magnet, an electromagnet creates a magnetic field when an electric current is applied to it. When made from coils of superconducting wire, it has no electrical resistance, making it more efficient, with the caveat that it must be cooled to minus 250 °C. The approach would eliminate the need for rare-earth materials, assuming GE can lower the cost enough to make it commercially viable.

Florida-based Advanced Magnet Lab, which also received DOE funding, believes it can build a 10-megawatt generator that weighs just 70 tons. As with GE's technology, the core of the company's innovation is a superconducting direct-drive generator. The company has developed a compact coil design based on double-helix windings that can carry high currents and handle the immense magnetic forces produced in the system.

Advanced Magnet Lab president Mark Senti says the high cost of superconducting materials and of cryogenically cooling makes no sense for today's three-megawatt wind turbines. But beyond six megawatts, he argues, the systems become competitive with conventional generator designs. At 10 megawatts, "it gives you the highest power-per-weight ratio."

There's also significant room for advancement. Senti says most superconducting wiring costs $400 per meter today, but new materials made out of inexpensive magnesium and boron powders promise to lower costs substantially. With improvements in manufacturing and less expensive cooling techniques, Senti figures superconducting technology could eventually become economical for wind turbines as small as two megawatts, making it ideal for both onshore and offshore markets.

Superconductivity isn't in everyone's plans. One of the other funding recipients, Boulder Wind Power, is focused on designing a better stator—stationary coil—for direct drive systems. Instead of copper wiring wound around a heavy iron core, the company's stator is made of printed circuit boards. These lightweight components can be manufactured in high volume and assembled in modules, making them easier to repair in remote offshore locations. "With this design, you just send a couple of guys out there to remove a stator segment and literally plug in a new one," says Derek Pletch, vice president of turbine development at Boulder Wind.

NREL, meanwhile, is taking a hybrid approach by designing a medium-speed drivetrain that uses a simpler single-stage gearbox and a medium-sized generator. Felker says the approach can be easily adapted to existing designs and be picked up in the marketplace faster. Clipper Windpower and Dehlsen Associates also received funding. After six months, the DOE is expected to shortlist the designs and contribute an additional $2 million to each project for performance testing.

Source: Technology Review

 

A University of Georgia researcher has invented a new technology that can inexpensively render medical linens and clothing, face masks, paper towels -- and yes, even diapers, intimate apparel and athletic wear, including smelly socks -- permanently germ-free.

The simple and inexpensive anti-microbial technology works on natural and synthetic materials. The technology can be applied during the manufacturing process or at home, and it doesn't come out in the wash. Unlike other anti-microbial technologies, repeated applications are unnecessary to maintain effectiveness.

"The spread of pathogens on textiles and plastics is a growing concern, especially in healthcare facilities and hotels, which are ideal environments for the proliferation and spread of very harmful microorganisms, but also in the home," said Jason Locklin, the inventor, who is an assistant professor of chemistry in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences and on the Faculty of Engineering.

The anti-microbial treatment invented by Locklin, which is available for licensing from the University of Georgia Research Foundation, Inc., effectively kills a wide spectrum of bacteria, yeasts and molds that can cause disease, break down fabrics, create stains and produce odors.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately one of every 20 hospitalized patients will contract a healthcare-associated infection. Lab coats, scrub suits, uniforms, gowns, gloves and linens are known to harbor the microbes that cause patient infections.

Consumers' concern about harmful microbes has spurred the market for clothing, undergarments, footwear and home textiles with antimicrobial products. But to be practical, both commercial and consumer anti-microbial products must be inexpensive and lasting.

"Similar technologies are limited by cost of materials, use of noxious chemicals in the application or loss of effectiveness after a few washings," said Gennaro Gama, UGARF senior technology manager. "Locklin's technology uses ingeniously simple, inexpensive and scalable chemistry."

Gama said the technology is simple to apply in the manufacturing of fibers, fabrics, filters and plastics. It also can bestow antimicrobial properties on finished products, such as athletic wear and shoes, and textiles for the bedroom, bathroom and kitchen.

"The advantage of UGARF's technology over competing methods," said Gama, "is that the permanent antimicrobial can be applied to a product at any point of the manufacture-sale-use continuum. In contrast, competing technologies require blending of the antimicrobial in the manufacturing process."

"In addition," said Gama, "If for some reason the antimicrobial layer is removed from an article—through abrasion, for example—it can be reapplied by simple spraying."

Other markets for the anti-microbial technology include military apparel and gear, food packaging, plastic furniture, pool toys, medical and dental instrumentation, bandages and plastic items.

Locklin said the antimicrobial was tested against many of the pathogens common in healthcare settings, including staph, strep, E. coli, pseudomonas and acetinobacter. After just a single application, no bacterial growth was observed on the textile samples added to the culture—even after 24 hours at 37 degrees Celsius.

Moreover, in testing, the treatment remained fully active after multiple hot water laundry cycles, demonstrating the antibacterial does not leach out from the textiles even under harsh conditions. "Leaching could hinder the applicability of this technology in certain industrial segments, such as food packaging, toys, IV bags and tubing, for example," said Gama.

Thin films of the new technology also can be used to change other surface properties of both cellulose- and polymer-based materials. "It can change a material's optical properties—color, reflectance, absorbance and iridescence—and make it repel liquids, all without changing other properties of the material," said Gama.

Source: University of Georgia

 

New research by Joel E. Cohen and colleagues in Norway found that, at least among a population of Norwegian women, childbearing impeded education more than education impeded childbearing. The surprising findings are reported online this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

 

"These results suggest that women with advanced degrees have lower completed fertility on the average principally because women who have one or more children early are more likely to leave or not enter long educational tracks and never attain a high educational level," says Cohen, who is the Abby Rockefeller Mauzé Professor and head of the Laboratory of Populations at Rockefeller University and at Columbia University's Earth Institute.

Cohen and his co-authors, Øystein Kravdal and Nico Keilman from the University of Oslo, followed all the women born in Norway in 1964 through the end of their childbearing, using year-by-year data on education, enrollment and reproduction.

"We did this study in Norway because that's where we could get such beautiful data, not because that's where there's a big problem," Cohen says.

The researchers expected to find that women around 40 years old with more education bear fewer children mainly because education reduces childbearing. However, they found the opposite: women who have children early seem not to go on to higher education, much more than higher education reduces childbearing. "That's the main contribution of our paper," co-author Kravdal says. "We quantified the relative important of fertility for education and vice versa."

Cohen and his colleagues offer several possible policy implications based on their findings. For example, should women be discouraged from bearing children at an early age? The authors suggest that policy makers could recognize that early childbearing may be a result of decisions made by well-informed individuals. On the other hand, if society places a large value on education that is inadequately taken into account through individuals' decision making, policies could be adopted that discourage people from having children at an early age.

In addition, if women underestimate how much childbearing interferes with further education — along with potentially adverse consequences for their long-term quality of life — then a case could be made that it would be a good idea to create more awareness about the educational consequences of early childbearing.

Finally, a policy could be implemented that offset the effect of childbearing on education by, for example, lowering the cost of child care for students who are mothers. Such a policy, the authors say, could in principle make more women interested in having a child early; however, it would increase the educational levels for those who would have a child (whether wanted or not) while they are still young, with potentially beneficial effects also on others' well-being. "We discussed the policy implications at length, but with hesitation because more and better analyses need to be done, especially in developing countries," says Cohen.

Source: PhysOrg

 

Sandia National Laboratories has developed a new technology with the potential to dramatically alter the air-cooling landscape in computing and microelectronics, and lab officials are now seeking licensees in the electronics chip cooling field to license and commercialize the device.

Sandia’s “Cooler” technology offers fundamental breakthrough in heat transfer for microelectronics, other cooling applicationsThe “Sandia Cooler,” also known as the “Air Bearing Heat Exchanger,” is a novel, proprietary air-cooling invention developed by Sandia researcher Jeff Koplow, who was recently selected by the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) to take part in the NAE’s 17th annual U.S. Frontiers of Engineering symposium.

Koplow said the Sandia Cooler technology, which is patent-pending, will significantly reduce the energy needed to cool the processor chips in data centers and large-scale computing environments. The yearly electricity bill paid by the information technology sector in the U.S. is currently on the order of seven billion dollars and continues to grow.

Dramatic improvements in cooling, other benefits

In a conventional CPU cooler, the heat transfer bottleneck is the boundary layer of “dead air” that clings to the cooling fins. With the Sandia Cooler, heat is efficiently transferred across a narrow air gap from a stationary base to a rotating structure. The normally stagnant boundary layer of air enveloping the cooling fins is subjected to a powerful centrifugal pumping effect, causing the boundary layer thickness to be reduced to ten times thinner than normal. This reduction enables a dramatic improvement in cooling performance within a much smaller package.

Additionally, the high speed rotation of the heat exchanger fins minimizes the problem of heat exchanger fouling. The way the redesigned cooling fins slice through the air greatly improves aerodynamic efficiency, which translates to extremely quiet operation. The Sandia Cooler’s benefits have been verified by lab researchers on a proof-of-concept prototype approximately sized to cool computer CPUs. The technology, Koplow said, also shows great potential for personal computer applications.

Broader energy sector applications

The Sandia Cooler also offers benefits in other applications where thermal management and energy efficiency are important, particularly heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC). Koplow said that if Air Bearing Heat Exchanger technology proves amenable to size scaling, it has the potential to decrease overall electrical power consumption in the U.S. by more than seven percent.

Companies interested in licensing the Sandia Cooler are invited to review and respond to the solicitation through July 15. The solicitation can be found here. Although it is first focused on licensing opportunities in the field of electronics chip cooling, Sandia will soon establish a separate process for exploring partnering and/or licensing opportunities in other fields.

Source: PhysOrg

 
By Admin (from 31/10/2011 @ 14:00:32, in en - Science and Society, read 1663 times)

There are a surprising number of designs out there for electric cars. Most of the design innovations are about creating a more efficient design. While this has meant, for the most part, that design innovations have focused on the creation of better batteries or other fuel cells to power the car but those are not the only ways to improve the electric engines.

 3 Speed power-shift transmission

Recently Antonov Plc, a U.K. based engineering firm has decided to take a look at a different system on the electric vehicle and give the transmission an update. They have created a 3-speed transmission that is designed specifically for electric vehicles, which are designed to bring gains in the area of energy efficiency. The transmissions design details were shared at a presentation at the IDTechEX Electric vehicles conference that took place in Stuttgart this week.

You may wonder why one would want to use a 3-speed transmission in an electric vehicle? While most electric engines reach their full torque at 0 rpm, which has lead the majority of developers to believe that only one speed is needed, the efficiency of electric motors still varies at different speeds and variable efficiency. So while the engine may be a peek efficient when it reaches 90%, at lower speeds the engine may be working at 70% or even 60% of capacity. This means a multi-speed transmission can optimize the engine efficiency at different speeds.

This design change has taken the IDTechEx Electric Vehicles Land Sea Air "Technology Award" for the most significant EV technical development in the past two years. No word yet on when this innovation will show up in a consumer ready car.

Source: antonovplc.com

 

Form follows function to whole new level in Virginia Gardiner’s energy generating toilet – which is literally made from poop! Designed for use in developing countries, the LooWatt is a waterless toilet system that transforms human waste into a highly valued commodity – energy.

The low-cost mechanical eco commode encourages people to trade in their waste for biofuel, creating an urban infrastructure that encourages proper waste disposal, cuts down on the spread of water-born illnesses, and provides a reliable source of energy (so long as you’re regular). Check out a video from LOOWATT (here).

In designing the LooWatt system, Virginia sought to provide a solution for the 40% of the world’s population that lives without toilets. In many developing countries the installation of sewage systems is impossible, and improper waste disposal spreads devastating waterborne illnesses that afflict millions.

The LooWatt aims to solve this global sanitation crisis by creating an entirely new waste disposal infrastructure. The composting toilet is molded from 90% horse dung, and features a biodegradable lining that stores excrement in a sealed, odor-free container. Once the toilet is full, the user takes the poo package to an outdoor biodigestor, which in exchange provides a free source of biofuel for cooking.

The LooWatt has been exhibited around the world, was awarded an honorable mention from the AIGA Aspen Design Challenge, and was a finalist in the Buckminster Fuller Challenge. If you’d like to help push the project along, a donation of £17 will net you your very own “poo gem” – a dodecahedron molded from horse manure (makes a swell paperweight, gift or toy!), and £100 or more will net you a lovely deer-head candle holder – just the thing to brighten dungy dingy interior spaces.

Source: InHabitat  & LooWatt - Via Dwell

 

The concept solves quite a few of our current transportation issues by moving the world of biology into the vehicle construction process. Built with a 3D printing technique that creates an outer body that is similar in texture and form to cartilage -- and just as resiliant -- the car is able to withstand and bounce back after any external impact. Continuing with their outside of the box car-frame thinking, Emergent decided to take this bio-construction a bit further and place an independent fuel source right inside car - that's right, this curvy vehicle of the future makes its own biofuel!

The 3D printing technique used to create the outer body of this car constructs layers of a cartilage-like material through new molecular constructions of polymers, resins, rubbers and silicone, which are placed on the car’s frame in alternating thicknesses. The result is a body that is rigid in the places needed to keep you safe and soft where impacts occur; instead of a conventional car which is designed to crumple in front and back upon impact. The Semi-Rigid Car by comparison bounces back, while the cabin’s more structured frame keeps you safe from the impact. Unlike the construction of a conventional car, with its separation of glass, steel, sheet metal and bolts, the Semi-Rigid Car has a blended construction with composite materials that seem to meld together instead of fasten to each other.

Emergent decided that if the outside of their car is going to blend like nature, then why can’t the inside be alive as well? The Semi-Rigid Car actually makes its own biofuel deep within the car’s structure, where the semi-rigid cartilage of its exterior joins to form deep, thick-walled reservoirs. These reservoirs contain colonies of algae that produce biofuel as the car requires it. LED lights embedded within the algae reservoirs allow for 24-hour fuel production even when sunlight isn’t available.

This car not only has the smooth exterior and aesthetic of the fastest sports cars around, but allows you the freedom of driving independent of gas pumps, or even EV charging stations needed to juice up.

Source: Inhabitat

 

Heart cells are one of the most sought-after cells in regenerative medicine because researchers anticipate that they may help to repair injured hearts by replacing lost tissue. Now, researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania are the first to demonstrate the direct conversion of a non-heart cell type into a heart cell by RNA transfer. Working on the idea that the signature of a cell is defined by molecules called messenger RNAs (mRNAs), which contain the chemical blueprint for how to make a protein, the investigators changed two different cell types, an astrocyte (a star-shaped brain cell) and a fibroblast (a skin cell), into a heart cell, using mRNAs.

James Eberwine, PhD, the Elmer Holmes Bobst Professor of Pharmacology, Tae Kyung Kim, PhD, post-doctoral fellow, and colleagues report their findings online this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. This approach offers the possibility for cell-based therapy for cardiovascular diseases.

tCardiomyocyte (center), showing protein distribution (green and red colors) indicative of a young cardiomyocyte. Credit: Tae Kyung Kim, PhD, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania

"What's new about this approach for heart-cell generation is that we directly converted one cell type to another using RNA, without an intermediate step," explains Eberwine. The scientists put an excess of heart cell mRNAs into either astrocytes or fibroblasts using lipid-mediated transfection, and the host cell does the rest. These RNA populations (through translation or by modulation of the expression of other RNAs) direct DNA in the host nucleus to change the cell's RNA populations to that of the destination cell type (heart cell, or tCardiomyocyte), which in turn changes the phenotype of the host cell into the destination cell.

The method the group used, called Transcriptome Induced Phenotype Remodeling, or TIPeR, is distinct from the induced pluripotent stem cell (iPS) approach used by many labs in that host cells do not have to be dedifferentiated to a pluripotent state and then redifferentiated with growth factors to the destination cell type. TIPeR is more similar to prior nuclear transfer work in which the nucleus of one cell is transferred into another cell where upon the transferred nucleus then directs the cell to change its phenotype based upon the RNAs that are made. The tCardiomyocyte work follows directly from earlier work from the Eberwine lab, where neurons were converted into tAstrocytes using the TIPeR process.

The team first extracted mRNA from a heart cell, then put it into host cells. Because there are now so many more heart-cell mRNAs versus astrocyte or fibroblast mRNAs, they take over the indigenous RNA population. The heart-cell mRNAs are translated into heart-cell proteins in the cell cytoplasm. These heart-cell proteins then influence gene expression in the host nucleus so that heart-cell genes are turned on and heart-cell-enriched proteins are made.

To track the change from an astrocyte to heart cell, the team looked at the new cells' RNA profile using single cell microarray analysis; cell shape; and immunological and electrical properties. While TIPeR-generated tCardiomyocytes are of significant use in fundamental science it is easy to envision their potential use to screen for heart cell therapeutics, say the study authors. What's more, creation of tCardiomyoctes from patients would permit personalized screening for efficacy of drug treatments; screening of new drugs; and potentially as a cellular therapeutic.

Source: PhysOrg

 
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Nice read, I just passed this onto a friend who was doing some research on that. And he just bought me lunch since I found it for him smile So let me rephrase that Thank you for lunch! Whenever you ha...
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