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Latest University of Copenhagen Stories

2012-03-08 14:50:09

Researchers at the University of Copenhagen have documented a previously unknown biological mechanism in the brain's most important line of defense: the blood-brain barrier. Scientists now know that the barrier helps maintain a delicate balance of glutamate, a vital signal compound in the brain. The research results have just been published in the scientific journal GLIA. Glutamate is the most important activating transmitter substance in the brain. Vital in small amounts, it is toxic for...

The Blue Planet's New Water Budget
2012-03-06 04:28:52

Investigating the history of water on Earth is critical to understanding the planet's climate. One central question is whether Earth has always had the same amount of water on and surrounding it, the same so-called "water budget". Has Earth gained or lost water from comets and meteorites? Has water been lost into space? New research into the Earth's primordial oceans conducted by researchers at the Natural History Museum of Denmark at the University of Copenhagen and Stanford University...

Sturdy Scandinavian Conifers Survived Ice Age
2012-03-04 05:52:45

[ Watch the Video] Until now, it was presumed that the last glacial period denuded the Scandinavian landscape of trees until a gradual return of milder weather began and melted away the ice cover some 9000 years ago. That perspective is now disproved by research headed by Professor Eske Willerslev from the Centre for GeoGenetics, University of Copenhagen, Denmark, Laura Parducci from the University of Uppsala, Sweden, and Inger Greve Alsos from Tromsø University Museum,...

2012-03-02 14:20:19

Upon fertilisation, a single cell is formed when egg and sperm fuse. Our entire body, with more than 200 specialised cell types and billions of cells are formed from this single cell. It is a scientific mystery how the early stem cells know what cell type to become, but a precise timing of the process is crucial for correct development and function of our body. Researchers across the world chase knowledge about our stem cells, as this knowledge holds great promises for development of...

2012-02-22 21:34:08

Sometimes our immune defence attacks our own cells. When this happens in the brain we see neurodegenerative diseases such as dementia, Alzheimer´s and Parkinson´s disease. But if the the immune defence is inhibited, the results could be disastrous. Researchers at the University of Copenhagen have now discovered one of the molecular combat mechanisms in the brain that gets out of control in these diseases. In time this may enable targeted therapies to slow down the disease without...

2012-02-22 21:31:29

Sparrows, blackbirds and the great tit are all birds known to sing at a higher pitch (frequency) in urban environments. It was previously believed that these birds sang at higher frequencies in order to escape the lower frequencies noises of the urban environment. Now, researchers at the University of Copenhagen and the University of Aberystwyth have discovered that besides noise, the physical structure of cities also plays a role in altering the birds´ songs. Urban birds sing...

2012-02-21 14:06:49

Researchers at the University of Copenhagen have designed, produced and patented a new chemical compound for the possible treatment of brain damage caused by stroke. The compound binds 1,000 times more effectively to the target protein in the brain than the potential drug currently being tested on stroke victims. The results of biological tests have just been published in the renowned journal PNAS. More than 140,000 people die each year from stroke in the United States. Stroke causes the...

2012-02-20 20:28:32

Aggressive infections in hospitals are an increasing health problem worldwide. The development of bacterial resistance is alarming. Now a young Danish scientist has found a natural substance in a Chilean rainforest plant that effectively supports the effect of traditional treatment with antibiotics. PhD Jes Gitz Holler from the University of Copenhagen discovered in a research project a compound that targets a particular resistance mechanism in yellow staphylococci. The development of...

2012-02-16 14:05:20

Every cell in the body has chromosomes with so-called telomeres, which are shortened over time and also through lifestyle choices such as smoking and obesity. Researchers have long speculated that the shortening of telomeres increases the risk of heart attack and early death. Now a large-scale population study in Denmark involving nearly 20,000 people shows that there is in fact a direct link, and has also given physicians a future way to test the actual cellular health of a person. In an...

2012-02-09 23:21:41

Researchers at the Nano-Science Center at the University of Copenhagen have developed a new nano-technology platform for the development of molecule-based electronic components using the wonder material graphene. At the same time, they have solved a problem that has challenged researchers from around world for ten years.  Since its discovery in 2004, graphene has been called a wonder material, in part because it is 200 times stronger than steel, a good electrical conductor and is just...


Word of the Day
cacodemon
  • An evil spirit; a devil.
  • A nightmare.
  • In astrology, the twelfth house of a scheme or figure of the heavens: so called from its signifying dreadful things, such as secret enemies, great losses, imprisonment, etc.
'Cacodemon' comes from a Greek term meaning 'evil genius.'
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