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Latest Cell membrane Stories

2010-11-04 13:32:51

Researchers dispel the notion that membrane infrastructure is all water like... it can have bounce, too Mix two parts cornstarch and one part water. Swirl your fingers in it slowly and the mixture is a smoothly flowing liquid. Punch it quickly with your fist and you meet a rubbery solid -- so solid you can jump up and down on a vat of it. It turns out that cell membranes "“ or, more precisely the two-molecule-thick lipid sheets that form the structural basis of all cellular membranes --...

2010-11-01 15:21:02

They are the portals to the cell, gateways through which critical signals and chemicals are exchanged between living cells and their environments. But these gateways -- proteins that span the cell membrane and connect the world outside the cell to its vital inner workings "“ remain, for the most part, black boxes with little known about their structures and how they work. They are of intense interest to scientists as they are the targets on which many drugs act, but are notoriously...

2010-11-01 15:19:23

Chandra Tucker shines a blue light on yeast and mammalian cells in her Duke University lab and the edges of them start to glow. The effect is the result of a light-activated switch from a plant that has been inserted into the cell. Researchers could use this novel "on-off switch" to control cell growth or death, grow new tissue or deliver doses of medication directly to diseased cells, said Tucker, an assistant research professor in the biology department at Duke. She and colleagues created...

2010-10-19 17:00:25

US, Argentinean scientists: Bacteria respond indirectly to cold Some bacteria react to the cold by subtly changing the chemistry of their outer wall so that it remains pliable as temperatures drop. Scientists identified a key protein in this response mechanism a few years ago, but the question of how bacteria sense cold in the first place remained a mystery. Based on a study by scientists at Rice University and Argentina's National University of Rosario, the answer is: They use a measuring...

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2010-10-12 12:08:47

Using large-scale computer simulations, researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have identified the most important factors affecting how molecules move through the crowded environment inside living cells. The findings suggest that perturbations caused by hydrodynamic interactions "“ similar to what happens when the wake from a large boat affects smaller boats on a lake "“ may be the most important factor in this intracellular diffusion. A detailed understanding of the...

2010-10-08 02:22:15

In a technical tour de force, structural biologists funded by the National Institutes of Health have determined the three-dimensional structure of a molecule involved in HIV infection and in many forms of cancer. The high-resolution structure sheds light on how the molecule functions and could point to ways to control its activity, potentially locking out HIV and stalling cancer's spread. The molecule, CXCR4, is part of a large family of proteins called G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs)....

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2010-08-25 13:51:46

Pathogens make themselves feel at home in the human body, invading cells and living off the plentiful amenities on offer. However, researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology, Berlin, together with colleagues at Harvard University, reveal an opposite strategy used to ensure infection success. Pathogens can actually delay their entry into cells to ensure their survival. Upon cell contact, bacteria trigger a local strengthening of the cellular skeleton with the aid of...

2010-08-25 13:32:32

Certain pathogens make themselves at home in the human body by invading cells and living off the plentiful amenities on offer there. However, researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology, Berlin, together with colleagues at Harvard University, have discovered a contrary strategy to ensure infection success: some pathogens can actually delay their entry into cells to ensure their survival. Upon contact with a cell, these bacteria engage signalling molecules in the cell and...

2010-08-17 20:58:13

Research published in the journal Genetics suggests that sertraline targets intracellular membranes of yeast cells that don't express the known therapeutic target, suggesting a secondary drug target or pathway A new discovery about selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) suggests that these drugs, which are used to treat mental health disorders like depression and anxiety, have multiple effects on our cells. In a research report published in the August 2010 issue of GENETICS...

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2010-08-12 19:47:33

Bioprobes offer first intracellular measurements with a semiconductor deviceChemists and engineers at Harvard University have fashioned nanowires into a new type of V-shaped transistor small enough to be used for sensitive probing of the interior of cells.The new device, described this week in the journal Science, is smaller than many viruses and about one-hundredth the width of the probes now used to take cellular measurements, which can be nearly as large as the cells themselves. Its...


Word of the Day
monteith
  • A large punch-bowl of the eighteenth century, usually of silver and with a movable rim, and decorated with flutings and a scalloped edge. It was also used for cooling and carrying wine-glasses.
  • A kind of cotton handkerchief having white spots on a colored ground, the spots being produced by a chemical which discharges the color.
This word is possibly named after Monteith (Monteigh), 'an eccentric 17th-century Scotsman who wore a cloak scalloped at the hem.'
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