Cancer is a common disease that often proves fatal for those who fall prey to it and that can also have far-reaching consequences for relatives. 210,000 of the 350,000 or so people who fall ill each year in Germany die of the disease. The treatment of cancer additionally places a great burden on our public health system. Helmholtz scientists working in the “Cancer Research” programme have set themselves an ambitious goal: to decisively improve the chances in the battle against cancer. Their research studies cancer prevention, early recognition, diagnosis and treatment. (more…)
John McTaggart Ellis McTaggart put forth a seemingly convincing argument proposing the non-existence of time. McTaggart purports that for time to exist, it must have contradictory properties. McTaggart makes improper interpretations, and his defence does not answer the challenges put forth by others. Thus McTaggart’s unsound argument does not stand up to internal inspection nor extrnal challenges. (more…)
The Scientific Process. This integrated module will use bubbles to investigate
physics and chemistry topics including the optics and chemistry of thin films
as well as applications in biology and measurement.
Students will exhibit an ability to apply the steps of the scientific method, use
various scientific process skills, and understand the relationships that exist
among scientific disciplines and math/science. (more…)
More than 4,000 years ago, the people of the Neolithic period decided to build a massive monument using earth, timber and eventually, stones, placing it high on Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire, England — about 137 kilometers southwest of London. (more…)
In Space with a Little HOBO
Astronauts working in spacesuits to build the Space Station may get even colder than the suit designers imagined. Measuring the effects of extremely low temperatures on astronauts was the first step in making a better space suit. (more…)
High school physics and chemistry teacher David Byrum has always been an innovator, so when online courses came to his attention, he took advantage of this new learning format. Winner of the Arizona Presidential Award for Excellence in Science Education (1988) and a National Science Teacher’s Association National Exemplar award for his chemistry course (1984), Byrum takes his work seriously. For Byrum, distance leaning was the only way to take special-interest graduate-level courses that helped him (more…)
An unexpected discovery opens the door to new treatments for several cancers. Researchers at the JGH identify the genetic cause of the uncontrolled synthesis of proteins in cells in National Cancer Institute. Researchers at the Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research, Jewish General Hospital and the University McGill of Montreal have discovered a hitherto unknown link between two different genetic pathways to block growth of cancerous tumors. They say this discovery could lead to new treatments for certain forms of cancer more deadly and more difficult to treat, including prostate cancer, brain cancer and melanoma.
Indeed, they have discovered a new link between a tumor suppressor gene called PTEN (phosphatase and tensin homolog) and a protein called PKR, known to inhibit protein synthesis. In case of absence or mutation of PTEN, PKR loses its ability to inhibit, and protein synthesis in affected cells becomes uncontrollable.
“This leads to strong proliferation of these cells with a survival advantage compared to normal cells, says Dr. Antonis E. Koromilas the Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research at the JGH and the Department of Oncology of the McGill University. It is a condition which facilitates the development of tumors. ”
PTEN plays an essential role in the suppression of human cancers by blocking a process called genetic phosphoinositide-3 kinase (PI3K). Clinicians often target the PI3K with drugs prescribed to cancer patients, but treatment is not always effective since all the mutant forms of PTEN do not interact with PI3K. In 1992, a study published in the journal Science, Dr. Koromilas and Dr. Nahum Sonenberg of McGill University have identified PKR as a possible tumor suppressor, but its association with PTEN remained unsuspected at the time.
The new discovery was made by a university researcher Dr. Koromilas, Zineb Mounir, lead author of the study, in collaboration with colleagues in the United States. Their findings were published December 22 in the journal Science Signaling.
“Since they are not facilitated by the PI3K known, existing treatments for cancer does not always work on tumors with mutant forms of PTEN,” says Ms. Munir.
“Therefore, this finding has important implications if, says Dr. Koromilas. If we begin to understand how these mutations of PTEN, we should be able to create drugs that can activate PKR, mainly to wake its inhibitory function of protein synthesis. ”
These treatments, said Dr. Koromilas, not necessarily to be designed from scratch to target PKR.
“Our work has also learned that DNA damage can actually activate the PKR path, and some chemotherapy treatments are known to alter DNA. So we choose to create drugs that are specific to PKR or use drugs that have a wider impact and that activate this process almost as a side effect. ”
The co-authors of the study are Dr. Gavin Robertson of Penn State University, Dr. Maria-Magdalena Georgescu, MD Anderson Cancer Center, and Dr. Randal Kaufman of the University of Michigan.
In a study in mice to better understand the biological basis of drug addiction, scientists show how cocaine acts on a mechanism for the expression of genes in the nucleus accumbens, a key region of the reward circuit in the brain. The cocaine is known to induce lasting changes in this structure, both genetically and in its adaptability to new conditions, which could be related to some behavioral effects of drugs. (more…)
A small marine worm, Odontosyllis phosphorea has always intrigued by marine scientists and their bioluminescence. Reproduction of this phenomenon in the experimental framework could open the door to some amazing opportunities. Many organisms can take advantage of bioluminescence, and this variety of purposes, to attract a mate or prey, a predator or frighten, to some marine animals camouflage themselves. When you live in midwater and average depth, (more…)
90% of species marine, mainly corals, brachiopods, and echinoderms, and 70% of plant and animal land seem to disappear suddenly ago 251.4 million years. This is the famous Great Dying, the mass extinction between the Permian Triassic. (more…)