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Latest Autophagy Stories

2010-05-26 11:54:40

A defective, mutant strain of the bacterium that causes gum disease could provide a clue to potential treatments for Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and a number of other diseases. Researchers from the University of Florida College of Dentistry reported their findings May 25 at the 110th General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology in San Diego. Autophagy, or "self-eating," is an essential component of cellular survival and defense against invading organisms. It is how the cell degrades...

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2010-05-10 12:15:56

Mutations that cause Parkinson's disease prevent cells from destroying defective mitochondria, according to a study published online May 10 in the Journal of Cell Biology. Defects in the ubiquitin ligase Parkin are linked to early-onset cases of this neurodegenerative disorder. The wild-type protein promotes the removal of impaired mitochondria by a specialized version of the autophagy pathway called mitophagy, delivering mitochondria to the lysosomes for degradation. Mitochondria are often...

2010-04-12 07:20:00

Findings by Einstein researchers suggest treatment strategies In a step towards a possible treatment for Huntington's disease, scientists at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University have shown for the first time that the accumulation of a mutated protein may explain damaging cellular behavior in Huntington's disease. Their research is described in the April 11 online edition of Nature Neuroscience. Huntington's disease, which afflicted the folksinger Woody Guthrie, is a...

2010-03-04 16:48:05

Scientists at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, have identified a protein called Sestrin that serves as a natural inhibitor of aging and age-related pathologies in fruit flies. They also showed that Sestrin, whose structure and biochemical function are conserved between flies and humans, is needed for regulation of a signaling pathway that is the central controller of aging and metabolism. The work, led by Michael Karin, PhD, Distinguished Professor of Pharmacology...

2010-02-18 12:23:54

DNA damage sensor also responds to oxidative harm outside the nucleus HOUSTON - ATM, a protein that reacts to DNA damage by ordering repairs or the suicide of the defective cell, plays a similar, previously unknown role in response to oxidative damage outside of the nucleus, researchers report this week in the online version of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. "This tumor-suppressor that works in the nucleus to prevent replication of defective cells also has a second life...

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2010-02-12 09:53:57

A team of scientists from Princeton University and The Cancer Institute of New Jersey has embarked on a major new project to unravel the secret lives of cancer cells that go dormant and self-cannibalize to survive periods of stress. The work may help produce new cancer therapies to stem changes that render cancer cells dangerous and resistant to treatment. "We want to know: What role is this self-cannibalization playing in the middle of a tumor?" said team member Hilary Coller, an assistant...

2010-01-21 13:53:53

EMBO Reports selects a study by researchers at IRB Barcelona as the highlighted article of the week because of the relevance of autophagy in health All cells are equipped with a recycling program to collect and remove unnecessary cellular components. Autophagy sequesters and digests aged organelles, damaged proteins and other components, which, if not disintegrated and recycled, threaten cell viability. Researchers at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona) led by Antonio...

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2009-12-14 10:35:00

It's important to finish what you start, say Jeong-Sun Ju and researchers from Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis. In the December 14, 2009 issue of the Journal of Cell Biology, Ju et al. reveal how a mutant ATPase blocks autophagy partway through to cause a multi-tissue degenerative disease. Mutations in VCP, a member of the AAA ATPase family, cause inclusion body myopathy, Paget's disease of the bone, and frontotemporal dementia (IBMPFD), a rare disorder that mainly affects...

2009-12-01 14:29:14

In order to maintain muscle strength with age, cells must rid themselves of the garbage that accumulates in them over time, just as it does in any household, according to a new study in the December issue of Cell Metabolism, a Cell Press journal. In the case of cells, that waste material includes spent organelles, toxic clumps of proteins, and pathogens. The researchers made their discovery by studying mice that were deficient for a gene required for the tightly controlled process of...

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2009-11-17 07:55:00

A powerful new breast cancer treatment could result from packaging one of the newer drugs that inhibits cancer's hallmark wild growth with another that blocks a primordial survival technique in which the cancer cell eats part of itself, researchers say. While they are powerful killers of some breast cancer cells, new drugs called histone deacetylase inhibitors, or HDAC inhibitors, also increase self-digestion, or autophagy, in surviving, mega-stressed cells, Medical College of Georgia Cancer...


Word of the Day
omadhaun
  • A fool; a simpleton: a term of abuse common in Ireland and to a less extent in the Gaelic-speaking parts of Scotland.
This word is partly Irish in origin.