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Novel bioactive steroid biosynthetic pathway in symbiotic fungi

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
Furanosteroids, represented by wortmannin and viridin, are a special group of highly-oxygenated steroids featured by a furan ring. They are well-known nanomolar-potency inhibitors of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) and widely used in biological studies. Here, we report the first identification of the biosynthetic gene cluster for demethoxyviridin in symbiotic fungi. Structure-activity analyses of the biosynthetic intermediates revealed that the 3-keto group, the C1β-OH, and the aromatic ring C are important for PI3K inhibition.

World's biggest fisheries supported by seagrass meadows

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
Scientific research, led by Dr Richard Unsworth at Swansea University, has provided the first quantitative global evidence of the significant role that seagrass meadows play in supporting world fisheries productivity.

International anaesthesia standards updated with WHO in global effort to improve surgical care

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
This month the World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists (WFSA) launched an update of the International Standards For A Safe Practice of Anaesthesia, co-published with World Health Organization (WHO) for the first time as an official WHO guideline. The standards are recommended for anaesthesia professionals throughout the world and are intended to provide guidance to anaesthesia professionals, their professional societies, hospital and facility administrators, and governments for improving and maintaining quality and safety in anaesthesia.

Studying insight

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
The research team at Toyohashi University of Technology has measured the human pupil upon gaining insight into an object. It is known that pupils dilate/narrow to adjust the amount of light entering the eye and that emotional state affects the extent of dilation/narrowing. This study indicates that dilation extent varies depending on if inspiration occurs and that dilation occurs before inspiration. The results of the present study were published in Scientific Reports on May 2nd.

Children understand plant-animal interdependence by the age of eight

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
When do children start to become aware of the relationship between animal and plant life? According to a study by the UPV/EHU, they begin to associate animals and plants with each other spontaneously in their drawings by the age of eight. The UPV/EHU researchers José Domingo Villarroel, Álvaro Antón, Teresa Nuño and Daniel Zuazagoitia are the authors of this work, published in the scientific journal Sustainability.

An unexpected chemosensor pathway for innate fear behavior against predator odor

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
Innate behaviors are genetically encoded, but their underlying molecular mechanisms remain largely unknown. University of Tsukuba researchers conducted a large-scale forward genetics screening and detected an unexpected chemosensor pathway. The work establishes the first forward genetics screen to uncover the molecular mechanism of innate fear, a basic emotion and evolutionarily conserved survival mechanism.

Hotter bodies fight infections and tumors better -- researchers show how

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
The hotter our body temperature, the more our bodies speed up a key defence system that fights against tumours, wounds or infections, new research by a multidisciplinary team of mathematicians and biologists from the Universities of Warwick and Manchester has found.

Framework diversity of carbon nitrides offers rich platform for single atom catalysis

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
In a recent study, an international research team led by the group of Advanced Catalysis Engineering at ETH Zurich demonstrated that carbon nitrides of distinct framework types can serve as efficient hosts for metal atoms. The specific interaction with the host influenced the oxidation state, stability, and associated performance providing new opportunities to control and understand the properties of single-atom catalysts.

Genome structure of dinosaurs discovered by bird-turtle comparisons

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
Genome structure of dinosaurs discovered by bird-turtle comparisons A discovery by scientists at the University of Kent has provided significant insight into the overall genome structure of dinosaurs. By comparing the genomes of different species, chiefly birds and turtles, the Kent team were able to determine how the overall genome structure (i.e. the chromosomes) of many people's favourite dinosaur species - like Velociraptor or Tyrannosaurus - might have looked through a microscope.

Self-healing material a breakthrough for bio-inspired robotics

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
Many natural organisms have the ability to repair themselves. Now, manufactured machines will be able to mimic this property. In findings published this week in Nature Materials, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University have created a self-healing material that spontaneously repairs itself under extreme mechanical damage.

Many Americans say infectious and emerging diseases in other countries will threaten the US

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
An overwhelming majority of Americans (95%) think infectious and emerging diseases facing other countries will pose a 'major' or 'minor' threat to the U.S. in the next few years, but more than half (61%) say they are confident the federal government can prevent a major infectious disease outbreak in the US, according to a new national public opinion survey commissioned by Research!America and the American Society for Microbiology.

Observing cellular activity, one molecule at a time

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
Using a new mode of atomic force microscopy, researchers at EPFL have found a way to see and measure protein assembly in real time and with unprecedented detail.

Quantum effects observed in photosynthesis

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
Molecules that are involved in photosynthesis exhibit the same quantum effects as non-living matter, concludes an international team of scientists including University of Groningen theoretical physicist Thomas la Cour Jansen. This is the first time that quantum mechanical behavior was proven to exist in biological systems that are involved in photosynthesis. The interpretation of these quantum effects in photosynthesis may help in the development of nature-inspired light-harvesting devices. The results were published in Nature Chemistry.

Don't wait for a unicorn: Investing in low-carbon tech now will save money

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
Waiting for a 'unicorn technology' that provides green energy at low cost could be more expensive than adopting low-carbon energy technologies now.

Deadly malaria's evolution revealed

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
The evolutionary path of the deadliest human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, has been revealed for the first time. This parasite is a member of the Laverania parasite family that only infect the great apes including humans, chimpanzees and gorillas. Scientists from the Wellcome Sanger Institute and their collaborators estimate that Plasmodium falciparum emerged as a human-specific parasite species earlier than previously thought. The study in Nature Microbiology gives clues to how deadly parasites emerge.

Mice regrow brain tissue after stroke with bioengineered gel

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
In a first-of-its-kind finding, a new stroke-healing gel helped regrow neurons and blood vessels in mice with stroke-damaged brains, UCLA researchers report in the May 21 issue of Nature Materials.

Turning entanglement upside down

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
A team of physicists from ICTP-Trieste and IQOQI-Innsbruck has come up with a surprisingly simple idea to investigate quantum entanglement of many particles. Instead of digging deep into the properties of quantum wave functions - which are notoriously hard to experimentally access - they propose to realize physical systems governed by the corresponding entanglement Hamiltonians. By doing so, entanglement properties of the original problem of interest become accessible via well-established tools.

Discovery for grouping atoms invokes Pasteur

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
Scientists have found a new way of joining groups of atoms together into shape-changing molecules -- opening up the possibility of a new area of chemistry and the development of countless new drugs, microelectronics and materials. Discoveries of new ways to make isomers -- molecules made of the same atoms connected together differently -- were last reported in 1961 and before then in 1914. Proof-of-principle and prototype demonstration of this important finding are expected within 30 months.

Age-related racial disparity in childhood suicide

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
Age-related racial disparity exists in suicide rates among US youths.

Age-related racial disparity in suicide rates among US youth

Dom, 05/20/2018 - 22:00
Researchers investigated race-related differences in suicide rates in US youth. The researchers analyzed data separately for children ages 5-12 and adolescents ages 13-17. The suicide rate was roughly two times higher for black children compared with white children of the same age group. In contrast, the suicide rate for black adolescents was half that of white adolescents. The findings suggest the need for more research into contributing factors and targeted interventions for children.

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