The main role in new findings about neovessel formation is played by a protein called tissue factor. This factor turns out to have both a stimulatory function and an inhibitory function in the generation of blood vessels. Normally these two functions neutralize each other, but in diseases like retinopathy - where unwanted blood vessels grow into the retina - this balance is disturbed. The research team shows this in an article in the May issue of Nature Medicine.
Tissue factor is found in the cell walls of endothelial cells that line the lumenal side of blood vessels. The part of the tissue factor that faces the cell exterior sends signals, in combination with a certain so-called coagulation factor, to activate blood vessel cells to generate new vessel structures. The part of the tissue factor that resides on the inside of cells sends opposing signals that inhibit cell activation.
The group has unraveled these mechanisms by using several methods. For one thing, they have managed to generate transgenic mice that lack either the inhibitory mechanism, the stimulatory mechanism, or both. The results turned out accordingly: in mice without the inhibitory mechanism, for example, they have observed abnormally rapid growth of blood vessels in the retina and in tumors.
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Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.
Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...
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In the race to produce a quantum computer, a number of projects are seeking a way to create quantum bits -- or qubits -- that are stable, meaning they are not much affected by changes in their environment. This normally needs highly nonlinear non-dissipative elements capable of functioning at very low temperatures.
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Dental plaque and the viscous brown slime in drainpipes are two familiar examples of bacterial biofilms. Removing such bacterial depositions from surfaces is...
For the first time, scientists have succeeded in studying the strength of hydrogen bonds in a single molecule using an atomic force microscope. Researchers from the University of Basel’s Swiss Nanoscience Institute network have reported the results in the journal Science Advances.
Hydrogen is the most common element in the universe and is an integral part of almost all organic compounds. Molecules and sections of macromolecules are...
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