Cell Biology
Novel enzyme structure discovered by scientists
A research team at the University of California, Riverside, has discovered the structure of a novel RNA-modifying enzyme and identified the mechanism that controls substrate specificity. The study was published in Nature Communications on November 6 and explains how protein machinery in cells is regulated to target RNA molecules for modification.
Novel strategy for studying mitoribosomal and mitochondrial impact on disease
Researchers from the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden have developed a new experimental tool for studying mitochondrial protein synthesis in vivo. This research is presented in the October 5 issue of Cell Reports.  Discuss
Orphan immunity gene clusters acquired for protection
Researchers from the University of Washington School of Medicine and Howard Hughes Institute found that gut bacteria acquire interbacterial defense gene clusters. The October 30 article in Nature, suggests that bacteria use these toxins against their microbial neighbors. This discovery could further scientific knowledge of the human gut which is critical to many aspects of health and disease.  Discuss
Researchers identify microproteins with major implications in disease
A new study published in Nature Communications on October 25 provides evidence of how microproteins contribute to cellular stress. Researchers from Salk Institute suggest that these small proteins can cause dysregulation, which underlies several debilitating diseases including cancer, neurodegenerative disorders, and diabetes.  Discuss
Innovations in 3D printing lead to implantable blood vessels
Using bioinks formulated from smooth muscle cells from a human aorta and endothelial cells from an umbilical vein, researchers built a biomimetic blood vessel using 3D printing techniques.  Discuss
New study provides molecular insight into how memory changes with age
Researchers from King's College London and The Open University add evidence as to why memory in old age is less flexible than in young adulthood. They published research on October 17, in Current Biology.  Discuss
Software improves the speed of identifying potential new antibiotics
Computational biologists at Carnegie Mellon University and seven other institutions developed a software tool that can play a high-speed "Match Game" to identify bioactive molecules and microbial genes that produce them so they can be evaluated as new antibiotics and other therapeutic agents. This work was published in Cell Systems on October 16.  Discuss
Scientists elucidate the genetic impact of host immune system on the microbiome
Researchers at the University of Chicago conducted research that suggests that the genetic differences in the immune system contribute to bacterial colonization of gut. The findings, published in Cell Reports on October 15, uses a new approach to determine the genetic influence of the immune system on the microbiome of mice.  Discuss
New CRISPR Cas13 system offers powerful antiviral protection
A first-of-its-kind study conducted by researchers at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard demonstrates that Cas13, a class 2 CRISPR system, can be used as an antiviral in cultured human cells. The research, published in Molecular Cell on October 10, suggests that the RNA-cutting enzyme can be programmed to detect and destroy RNA-based viruses.  Discuss
DNA Metabarcoding used to analyze human diet
A collaborative study from US researchers demonstrates that DNA metabarcoding has promise for characterization of human diets. The research, which was published in mSystems on October 8, provides evidence that DNA sequencing-based approaches can be successfully applied to human samples.  Discuss
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