The Spanish Pediatrics Association has recently awarded the Pediatrics laboratory at the University of Navarre for a research into tobacco and foetal genetic instability. The study, by Marta Zalacaín, was carried out in conjunction with the Department of Gynacology and Obstetrics at the Hospital Virgen del Camino. “It involved analysing umbilical cords from many births which took place at both centres over three years and which have been distributed in four groups: non-smoking mothers, ex-smokers, those who stop smoking during pregnancy and those who continue to smoke. The aim was the look for any instability in the cord blood to see if there was any relationship with the smoking habits of the mother, either active or passive. In order to carry out this study, the collaboration by the Hospital Virgen del Camino has provided us with a very wide-ranging population of smoking mothers”, explains Marta Zalacaín. The research involved a questionnaire filled in by both the mother and father regarding their smoking habits, together with biochemical tests to measure cotinine in urine, the metabolite produced by nicotine in the body.
This work involves the micronuclei testing, the technology of which has been developed and applied successfully by Marta Zalacaín. According to Dr. Patiño, “When a genotoxic agent affects the cells, such as benzoapyrene in tobacco, genetic damage may be caused which interfere with cell division. As a product of this damage, a number of chromosomic fragments separate from the main nucleus and come together in a secondary nucleus known as a micronucleus. The research is aimed at seeing how the number of micronuclei vary amongst smoking and non-smoking mothers”.
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In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.
Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...
Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...
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,...
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07.12.2016 | Health and Medicine
07.12.2016 | Life Sciences
07.12.2016 | Health and Medicine