Latest European Molecular Biology Laboratory Stories

2009-05-01 08:49:07

Recycling is important not only on a global scale, but also at the cellular level, since key molecules tend to be available in limited numbers. This means a cell needs to have efficient recycling mechanisms. Researchers at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) and Heidelberg University, Germany, have now uncovered the first step in the recycling of a crucial molecular tag which ensures the instructions encoded in our genes are correctly carried out. The study, published this week...

2009-02-05 08:38:44

Scientists in Europe announced Wednesday that they had discovered how the flu virus is able to overtake cells and use them to duplicate itself. Their findings available in the British-based journal Nature, the researchers stated that they found a small part of an enzyme that craftily works and could become useful to drug manufactures. They targeted the enzyme polymerase, which guides the cell's organs to produce viral proteins. To make this happen, the polymerase creates a genetic tag, or a...

2008-11-20 10:51:42

Researchers unravel how the very first eyes in evolution might have worked and how they guide the swimming of marine plankton towards light Larvae of marine invertebrates "“ worms, sponges, jellyfish - have the simplest eyes that exist. They consist of no more than two cells: a photoreceptor cell and a pigment cell. These minimal eyes, called eyespots, resemble the 'proto-eyes' suggested by Charles Darwin as the first eyes to appear in animal evolution. They cannot form images but allow...

2008-10-10 09:03:31

The first few hours of an embryo developing were caught with the help of a new high-powered microscope. The event marked the first time scientists could catch this process in vertebrates, and watched a zebrafish develop from a single cell into an embryo with a beating heart.  Researchers created a three-dimensional digital reconstruction of the tiny, developing fish known as zebra danio. They are popular research subjects because they are cheaper to breed than mice and share...

2008-05-29 16:00:39

An enzyme that binds differently to male and female sex chromosomes helps males to make up for their X chromosome shortage Researchers from the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany, and the EMBL-European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI) in Hinxton, UK, have revealed new insights into how sex chromosomes are regulated. A chromatin modifying enzyme helps compensate for the fact that males have only one copy of the sex chromosome X, while females have two. The...

2008-04-07 11:20:00

New mouse model grants insight into the genetic and molecular mechanisms underpinning acute myeloid leukemiaLeukemia "“ cancer of blood or bone marrow "“ is caused by mutations that allow defective blood cells to accumulate and displace healthy blood. To devise effective therapies it is crucial to know which mutations cause leukemia and which cell type gives rise to leukaemic cells. Researchers from the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Italy, the EMBL-European...

2007-12-05 13:25:30

Scientists have gotten their best look ever at interactions inside human skin cells, finding a Velcro-like setup that links them and makes skin strong while also supple. The cell-interior images, made with a new a technique called cryo-electron tomography, show the proteins responsible for cell-cell contacts for the first time. "This is a real breakthrough in two respects," said Achilleas Frangakis of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory. "Never before has it been possible...

2005-08-22 14:08:24

The world's three leading public repositories for DNA and RNA sequence information have reached 100 gigabases [100,000,000,000 bases; the 'letters' of the genetic code] of sequence. Thanks to their data exchange policy, which has paved the way for the global exchange of many types of biological information, the three members of the International Nucleotide Sequence Database Collaboration [INSDC, www.insdc.org] "“ EMBL Bank [Hinxton, UK], GenBank [Bethesda, USA] and the DNA Data Bank of...

2005-07-13 14:20:00

Microtubules need a helping hand to find chromosomes in dividing egg cells, scientists have discovered. Although it was generally accepted that microtubules act alone as the cellular ropes to pull chromosomes into place, a new study by researchers at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) shows that this is not the case. They found that in large cells such as animal eggs, something else is needed to move the chromosomes into the correct location - fibres of the cytoskeletal molecule...

Word of the Day
  • A Roman unit of weight, 1⁄1728 of a pound.
  • A weight of four grains used in weighing gold and precious stones; a carat.
  • In anatomy, a formation suggesting a husk or pod.
  • The lowest unit in the Roman coinage, the twenty-fourth part of a solidus.
  • A coin of base silver of the Gothic and Lombard kings of Italy.
'Siliqua' comes from a Latin word meaning 'a pod.'