New Research Technology to Target Human Gut Bacteria
The National Institutes of Health has awarded a three-year, $1.1 million grant to a team of scientists at the University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory to develop a technology for studying the link between human health and disease and the microorganisms that reside in or on the human body.
The grant is one of 14 awarded nationwide to research groups as part a $42 million expansion of the Human Microbiome Project. The human microbiome consists of beneficial and harmful microbes that include bacteria, viruses and fungi. The NIH launched the five-year, $157 million project in 2008 to serve as a research resource and to provide strategies for developing new therapies that manipulate the human microbiome to improve health.
Leading the UChicago-Argonne team will be Rustem Ismagilov, Professor in Chemistry. Joining him on the project are Eugene B. Chang, the Martin Boyer Professor of Medicine; Dionysios Antonopoulos, Assistant Professor of Medicine and biologist at Argonne, and Folker Meyer; associate director of Argonne’s Institute for Genomics and Systems Biology.
Historically, microbes have been studied in the laboratory as cultures of isolated species, but their growth is dependent upon a specific natural environment that is often difficult to duplicate. The NIH now seeks to develop techniques that can both increase the success rate for cultivating microbes and target cultivation efforts toward microbes of high biomedical interest.
The UChicago-Argonne team will use microfluidics to overcome the limitations of traditional cultivation and targeting methods by developing a single-cell confinement technology. Microfluidics is a means of precisely controlling the flow of liquids through channels thinner than a human hair.
The team will use sulfur-reducing bacteria from the human colon as the test system. These poorly understood bacteria are associated with ulcerative colitis and intra-abdominal infections, but the technology will generally apply to the identification and cultivation of all classes of microbes in the human gut microbiome.
Steve Koppes | Newswise Science News
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water
In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...
The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...