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New method creates insights into T-cell responses to infections
March 11, 2021 -- Researchers have developed a method to study the specialization of T cells in the context of acute versus chronic infections. They found that T-cell responses can vary based on receptor signal strength and the persistence of infection in a study published in eLife on March 8. Read More
RNA editing affects gene expression -- with disease implications
March 10, 2021 -- Researchers found that RNA editing events can have large downstream effects that influence gene expression and subsequent phenotypic manifestations of that expression. RNA editing may be a previously underappreciated mechanism driving human diseases, according to an analysis published in Genome Biology on March 9. Read More
Can a single dose of a vaccine designed as 2 doses be effective?
March 9, 2021 -- Researchers suggested that two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine are more protective than a single dose, even if the interdose period is longer than recommended. The study's results, published in Science on March 9, indicate that the effect of vaccines on the spread and mutation of SARS-CoV-2 is reliant on relative robustness of immunity conferred by a single dose. Read More
Chromatography drives research fight against SARS-CoV-2 virus
March 8, 2021 -- As the battle against the deadly SARS-CoV-2 virus continues, researchers are relying on analytical laboratory techniques like chromatography to provide effective and efficient methods for characterizing the virus, as well as to analyze potential vaccines and anti-COVID-19 compounds. Read More
Researchers extract new layer of data with proteomic analysis of cancers
March 5, 2021 -- Researchers have demonstrated the utility of proteomics in the analysis of seven aggressive cancers among a cohort of nearly 800 patient samples. The analysis, published in Oncogene on February 24, reveals potentially novel therapeutic targets. Read More
ACE2 protein shows promise as a front-line COVID-19 therapy
March 5, 2021 -- The recombinant, soluble form of a protein that acts as the receptor for SARS-CoV-2 -- the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) protein -- shows promise as a treatment therapy for COVID-19, according to new research presented at the European Congress of Radiology held March 3-7. Read More
Researchers discover potent inhibitors of SARS-CoV-2 main protease
March 4, 2021 -- Researchers have identified protein compounds that are potent inhibitors of the SARS-CoV-2 main protein, a key enzyme that enables the replication of the deadly virus. Their screening and synthetic chemistry approach was detailed in an article published March 3 in Angewandte Chemie. Read More
Combo of CRISPR, informatics helps uncover genetic regulators of immune cells
March 3, 2021 -- A new computational tool that uses CRISPR and multimodal single-cell sequencing data can provide insights into the function and regulation of human genes. The study, published in Nature Genetics on March 1, provides details on the molecular regulation of immune checkpoint inhibitors. Read More
Scientists achieve milestone in animal-free production of biologics
March 2, 2021 -- For the first time, scientists have successfully produced sugar-based biologic molecules utilizing bacteria, without the need for animal products. The paper, published in Nature Communications on March 2, describes the production of a common designer polysaccharide, chondroitin sulfate. Read More
Single-cell RNAseq differentiates cancer stem cells from healthy stem cells
March 1, 2021 -- Researchers have described a new single-cell RNA-sequencing approach, leveraging genomic and mitochondrial DNA mutations, that has the potential to differentiate normal stem cells from cancer stem cells. The article detailing the approach was published in Nature Communications on March 1. Read More
Janssen COVID-19 vaccine becomes 3rd authorized in U.S.
March 1, 2021 -- Janssen Biotech's COVID-19 vaccine has received an emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The move allows the vaccine to be distributed in the U.S. for the prevention of COVID-19 caused by SARS-CoV-2 in individuals 18 years of age or older. Read More
FDA committee gives nod to Janssen COVID-19 vaccine
February 26, 2021 -- A single-shot COVID-19 vaccine from Johnson & Johnson's Janssen Biotech subsidiary has received a positive recommendation from a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory committee. Should the FDA grant the product emergency use authorization, the vaccine candidate will become the third to be made available in the U.S. Read More
New open-access toolkit helps research labs study SARS-CoV-2
February 26, 2021 -- One of the most important factors in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic is large-scale scientific collaborations and knowledge sharing. One international group of researchers has made its simple, robust toolkit available to laboratories around the globe that are unaccustomed to working with coronaviruses. The details can be found in a PLOS Biology paper published on February 25. Read More
Clinical pipeline promises effective 2nd-generation COVID-19 vaccines
February 25, 2021 -- Despite the small number of COVID-19 vaccines that have been granted emergency use authorizations by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to date, many biopharmaceutical companies are continuing to push new vaccine candidates toward regulatory approval. The slow rollout of approved vaccines has created the need for second-generation products with the potential to accelerate the world's return to something approaching normalcy. Read More
Game theory reveals how SARS-CoV-2 tricks human cells
February 24, 2021 -- Researchers have applied game theory in an effort to understand how SARS-CoV-2 mimics host proteins to support its own replication. The work, published in Royal Society Interface on February 24, applied a type of game theory on how information is signaled to reveal how the virus tries to trick human cells from attacking it. Read More
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