Tech

Rapid communication of neurons in the brain, as well as the ability to learn, fundamentally rely on neurotransmitter receptors located in the contact sites of neurons, the synapses. The most important receptors in the mammalian brain are glutamate receptors of the AMPA-type (AMPAR) that generate the electrical signal required for fast communication between neurons.

Next year is the 200 years anniversary of the discovery of electromagnetism by the Danish physicist H.C. Ørsted. Even 200 years after its discovery, the existence of electromagnetism still brings up new puzzles pertaining to their origin.

One such mystery is the origin of electro magnetic fields on the very largest scale in the universe.

Bioengineers at the University of California San Diego are a step closer to making CAR T-cell therapy safer, more precise and easy to control. They developed a system that allows them to select where and when CAR T cells get turned on so that they destroy cancer cells without harming normal cells.

The system requires two "keys"--the drug Tamoxifen and blue light--to activate CAR T cells to bind to their targets. Just one key keeps the cells inactive. Researchers tested their system on live cell cultures as a proof of concept. Their next step is to do tests on tumors in mice.

How can tens of thousands of people in a large football stadium all clap together with the same beat even though they can only hear the people near them clapping?

Scientists at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) have developed a device that can identify a wide range of airborne gases and chemicals instantly.

The new prototype device is portable and suitable for rapid deployment by agencies to identify airborne hazards, such as from tiny gas molecules like sulphur dioxide. It can also identify larger compound molecules such as benzene, known to be harmful to human health.

Microscopic droplets on the surface of leaves give refuge to bacteria that otherwise may not survive during the dry daytime, according to a new study published today in eLife.

Understanding this bacterial survival strategy for dry conditions may enable scientists to develop practices that support healthy plant microbiomes in agricultural and natural settings.

In a study using non-invasive tape strips in young children with eczema (or atopic dermatitis), researchers found many molecular signs of immune dysfunction and skin changes that relate to disease activity. These signs (or biomarkers) were present even before eczema was visible and can be used to track disease activity over time. With more research, these biomarkers also may help predict response to medicine and development of conditions associated with eczema, such as asthma, other allergies, infections and even attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

The aim of immunotherapies is to enable the immune system once again to fight cancer on its own. Drugs known as checkpoint inhibitors are already in clinical use for this purpose. However, they are only effective in about one third of patients. Based on analysis of human tissue samples, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) has now discovered one reason why this is so: an inactive receptor in cancer cells prevents the drugs from reactivating the immune system.

PITTSBURGH -- Commercial drone products can tackle some automated tasks, but one thing those systems don't address is filming artistically. A team led by Carnegie Mellon University researchers has proposed a complete system for aerial cinematography that learns humans' visual preferences. The fully autonomous system does not require scripted scenes, GPS tags to localize targets or prior maps of the environment.

Northwestern Engineering materials science researchers have uncovered new insights into how electrostatic interactions can be regulated to attain and control scroll-like cochleate structures, which could inform how to capture and release macromolecules in a size-selective manner as part of future drug-delivery strategies.

A new study points to the need for better antibody validation, and outlines a process that other labs can use to make sure the antibodies they work with function properly.

Antibodies are used in laboratories and clinics to study proteins, which are the biomolecules that translate information from an organism's genes into the structure, function, and regulation of its tissues and organs. Genetic mutations can cause protein imbalances or malfunctions, leading to human disease.

In work that combines a deep understanding of the biology of soft-bodied animals such as earthworms with advances in materials and electronic technologies, researchers from the United States and China have developed a robotic device containing a stretchable transistor that allows neurological function.

HOUSTON - (Oct. 14, 2019) - Rice University scientists have found revealing information where light from a molecule meets light from a nanoparticle.

The labs of Rice chemists Christy Landes and Stephan Link demonstrated how to optimize a method that can sense small concentrations of molecules by amplifying the light they emit when their spectral frequencies overlap with those of nearby plasmonic nanoparticles.

Machines' ability to learn by processing data gleaned from sensors underlies automated vehicles, medical devices and a host of other emerging technologies. But that learning ability leaves systems vulnerable to hackers in unexpected ways, researchers at Princeton University have found.

Genetic differences in the immune system shape the collections of bacteria that colonize the digestive system, according to new research by scientists at the University of Chicago.

In carefully controlled experiments using germ-free mice populated with microbes from conventionally raised mice, the researchers showed that while the makeup of the microbial input largely determined the resulting microbiome of the recipients, genetic differences between strains of mice played a role as well.