When cells express the abnormal protein… In these cells, the blue, green and yellow labeling respectively corresponds to the nucleus, the abnormal protein EWS/FLI-1 and the protein IGFBP-3. In the cells where EWS/FLI-1 is present (green labeling), IGFBP-3 is absent (no yellow labeling), confirming that EWS/FLI1 prevents expression of the IGFBP-3 gene. A. Prieur/Institut Curie
To develop new therapeutic approaches to cancer, it is essential to understand the long and extremely complex process that underlies it, in other words the various stages of cancer development from the initial mutation to the tumor. Having already identified the alteration that leads to Ewing’s sarcoma, a bone cancer which afflicts young people, an Inserm team at the Institut Curie has recently used a combination of novel techniques to show that there 86 deregulated genes in these tumors. One of these genes, a new “link” in the development of Ewing’s sarcoma, could be used as a therapeutic target. These discoveries were published in the August 2004 issue of Molecular and Cellular Biology.
Cancer results from the proliferation of abnormal cells in the body. The trigger is an alteration in the genetic material of a single cell, in certain genes that regulate vital processes (division, differentiation, apoptosis, repair). However, a single mutation is not enough to transform a health cell into a cancer cell. Rather it is a succession of genetic accidents that results in uncontrolled cells that accumulate and lead to tumor formation.
Few cancers have a simple molecular signature – a specific mutation that leads to tumor growth. In Ewing’s sarcoma, a malignant tumor of the bone which affects children, teenagers and young adults, this molecular signature has been discovered thanks to a close collaboration between physicians and researchers at the Institut Curie, the internationally renowned reference center for the study and treatment of Ewing’s sarcoma.
Rainbow colors reveal cell history: Uncovering β-cell heterogeneity
22.09.2017 | DFG-Forschungszentrum für Regenerative Therapien TU Dresden
The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet
22.09.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Biochemie
Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.
Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...
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