Tag: cancer

Jun 09 2016

Evolutionary approach to cancer treatment

The existence of cancer is based on a fundamental process that occurs in an organism: cell division. A tumor cell breaks the rules of cell division that other cells follow. Cancer can only grow this way if some of the tumor suppressor genes – such as the p53 gene – get mutated in the cancer cells. Then, …

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Jun 06 2016

Netherlands allows growing human embryos

The government of the Netherlands is willing to allow growing human embryos “under strict and limited conditions” for research purposes, which would give hope to parents who have problems conceiving. The Dutch minister of health, Edith Schippers, said the aim is to “give people the possibility of (healthy) children”. The research has to do with …

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Apr 20 2016

Dead tumor cells may be used for vaccination

Researchers from the University of Ghent have demonstrated that dead tumor cells are an exceptionally strong stimulus for the immune system in its fight against spreading tumors. The discovery comes from a group of young scientists who study different types of cell death on the molecular level. Dr. Peter Vandenabeele’s team shifted their interest to …

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Dec 16 2015

Pigeons can recognize cancer

A report in the journal PLOS ONE shows that pigeons can learn to recognize tumor tissue in microscopic or mammographic images after several days of training. This highlights the birds’ outstanding visual memory, as well as their ability to categorize similarities. The brain of a pigeon is as small as the tip of a human …

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May 20 2015

Vaccine against human papillomavirus (HPV)

Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a sexually-transmitted virus infecting the skin and mucosal tissues. From a structural perspective, HPV is a highly unstable virus and impossible to mass-produce in the laboratory. Therefore, a vaccine based on live viral elements was not feasible. Instead, Ian Frazer and Jian Zhou at the University of Queensland, Australia, devised the …

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Jan 20 2015

Reactive oxygen species could aid in cancer treatment

Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are molecules belonging to two groups: free radicals having one or more unpaired electron(s) such as superoxide (O2–), hydroxyl radical (OH●), and nitric oxide (NO●); and non-radical ROS with no unpaired electrons such as hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) or singlet oxygen (1O2). ROS are naturally produced by the mitochondrial electron transport chain …

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Dec 03 2014

Artificial enzymes created from synthetic genetic material

Scientists have made a breakthrough in the field of synthetic biology by creating, for the first time, enzymes from artificial genetic material that does not exist in nature. This exciting new work not only offers new insights into the origins of life on Earth, but also has implications for our search for extraterrestrial life on …

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