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Hydrogels enable on-demand production of pharmaceuticals
February 4, 2020 -- A first-in-class system that effectively embeds engineered microbes into the solid support of a 3D-printed hydrogel is described in a report published in Nature Communications on February 4. The hydrogel system organizes both individual microbes and groups of microbes for on-demand production of pharmaceuticals.  Discuss
Math models improve the effectiveness of immunotherapy
February 4, 2020 -- Scientists working at the intersection of math and medicine propose new strategies based on mathematical modeling and known molecular mechanisms to improve the efficacy of lifesaving immunotherapies for cancerous tumors. The work was published on February 3 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.  Discuss
Chinese researchers mobilize to classify 2019-nCoV
February 3, 2020 -- In response to a recent outbreak of the novel coronavirus (2019-CoV), scientists in China have uncovered genetic similarities with severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) coronaviruses by analyzing patient samples from the source of the outbreak. Their findings provide crucial evidence that will aid in the classification and identification of 2019-CoV, according to a new report published in Nature on February 3.  Discuss
Institut Pasteur reveals how it sequenced the coronavirus
January 31, 2020 -- On January 30, the Institut Pasteur became the first European institution to sequence the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) since the outbreak began in December 2019. Institut Pasteur researchers used a unique sequencing platform to confirm the presence of 2019-nCoV in three samples from suspected cases in France.  Discuss
Wuhan coronavirus spread may be vastly underestimated
January 31, 2020 -- Up to 75,800 people in the city of Wuhan, China, are estimated to be infected with the 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), which is vastly more than official reports, according to a mathematical modeling study by Hong Kong experts that was published online January 31 in the Lancet journal.  Discuss
Brain's immune system blocks blood immune cells from healing spinal injuries
January 31, 2020 -- Molecular and computational analysis of immune responses in the central nervous system reveals that the brain's immune system may prevent blood immune cells from entering a lesion site after injury. The research, published online in Science Advances on January 15, may offer new avenues to treat certain neurological diseases such as multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer's disease, and spinal cord injury.  Discuss
NGS of China coronavirus shows bat origins, intermediate host
January 30, 2020 -- Next-generation sequencing (NGS) of 10 genomes of novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) from nine patients in China demonstrated that the virus is closely related to two coronaviruses that originated in bats, but that an intermediate host may be responsible for the spread to humans, according to a study published in Lancet on January 29, 2020.  Discuss
Enrichment NGS emerges as surveillance tool for coronavirus
January 29, 2020 -- As the coronavirus continues to grow as a global health concern, researchers urgently seek efficient methods to predict and mitigate emerging coronavirus strains. An international team of researchers believes that targeted next-generation sequencing (NGS) may be a valuable tool for monitoring both current and future outbreaks of coronavirus originated from bats.  Discuss
Nanoparticles eat cardiovascular plaques from the inside out
January 29, 2020 -- Scientists have engineered a nanoparticle that eats plaques associated with cardiovascular disease -- from the inside out. This Trojan horse technology could offer a new therapeutic option for the treatment of atherosclerosis, according to a study published in Nature Nanotechnology on January 27.  Discuss
Stem cell findings help researchers learn about early-onset Parkinson's
January 27, 2020 -- New research utilizing stem cells indicates that the metabolic processes that lead to young-onset Parkinson's disease could begin years before symptoms of the disease emerge. But the findings also point to a potential drug candidate that could be used to treat the condition, according to a study published January 27 in Nature Medicine.  Discuss
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