Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New Swedish research hope for millions of sufferers

01.10.2007
Today’s issue of the scientific journal Science presents research on the genetic make-up and biology of the parasite Giardia lamblia that ultimately may lead to better diagnosis and treatment of the diarrhea disease giardiasis, which affects 200 million people every year. It may also bring an understanding of several vital biological processes in humans.

Giardia lamblia is an intestinal parasite that exists all over the world and causes diarrhea. Above all, it affects young individuals, and in the third world the infection is extremely common. At present roughly 200 million people are infected with Giardia; Sweden has 1,500 cases each year, with infection spreading at day-care centers and via polluted water.

Recently the Norwegian city of Bergen experienced a major water-borne epidemic, with 1,300 people infected by the parasite. Young animals can also get Giardia infections, which entails major costs for agriculture. It is not known why Giardia makes people sick, nor why some people are more susceptible than others.

Today’s issue of Science includes an article by Swedish and American researchers describing the genetic sequence and biology of Giardia lamblia and comparing it with other organisms. Among other things, the article shows that the parasite differs in several ways from other organisms when it comes to the copying and reading of DNA. The parasite also lacks several common signal proteins, but, on the other hand, it has many enzymes of the protein kinase and protein phosphate type whose functions are still unknown.

“Research on the parasite will be radically changed, and new methods that were previously unusable can now be applied. This means that there is great potential for finding new medicines, vaccines, and diagnostic tools much more quickly and efficiently. This opens new paths for finding treatment for this severe disease,” says Associate Professor Staffan Svärd, Uppsala University, co-author of the study being published.

Giardia is a remote relative of human beings, which is reflected in the fact that many basic processes occur in both cell types, but the analysis of the genome shows that the parasite’s processes are much more simply structured. This means that much more complicated processes in humans can be understood more readily.

“It’s easier to do a puzzle with 4 pieces compared with 40 pieces, and it shows us what pieces are most important in the human puzzle,” explains Staffan Svärd.

Staffan Svärd | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.icm.uu.se

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht The genes are not to blame
20.07.2018 | Technische Universität München

nachricht Targeting headaches and tumors with nano-submarines
20.07.2018 | Universitätsmedizin der Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Future electronic components to be printed like newspapers

A new manufacturing technique uses a process similar to newspaper printing to form smoother and more flexible metals for making ultrafast electronic devices.

The low-cost process, developed by Purdue University researchers, combines tools already used in industry for manufacturing metals on a large scale, but uses...

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

A smart safe rechargeable zinc ion battery based on sol-gel transition electrolytes

20.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Reversing cause and effect is no trouble for quantum computers

20.07.2018 | Information Technology

Princeton-UPenn research team finds physics treasure hidden in a wallpaper pattern

20.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>