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Pharmacology - Health - 15.07.2020
Blueprint of Oxytocin Receptor Facilitates Development of New Autism Drugs
Blueprint of Oxytocin Receptor Facilitates Development of New Autism Drugs
Oxytocin plays a role in various mental health and sexual reproduction disorders. Researchers at the University of Zurich have now determined the three-dimensional structure of the oxytocin receptor to which the hormone binds. This knowledge could promote the development of novel drugs to treat a variety of diseases.

Life Sciences - Health - 13.07.2020
Brain 'signature' could help to diagnose schizophrenia
Brain ’signature' could help to diagnose schizophrenia
People with schizophrenia and their healthy siblings share patterns of brain activity that are different from those seen in individuals with no family history of the disorder, scientists from EPFL have found. Because the siblings do not show schizophrenia symptoms, this brain 'signature' could serve as a marker for the early diagnosis of the disorder.

Health - Life Sciences - 13.07.2020
Cystic fibrosis: why so many respiratory complications?
Cystic fibrosis: why so many respiratory complications?
By demonstrating the key role of Vav3 protein, UNIGE researchers highlight how the protein Vav3 creates bacterial docking stations to facilitate lung infections in cystic fibrosis. Cystic fibrosis, one of the most common genetic diseases in Switzerland, causes severe respiratory and digestive disorders.

Health - Life Sciences - 10.07.2020
Transplantable lab-grown organs move a step closer
Transplantable lab-grown organs move a step closer
A liver organoid developed at EPFL offers new promise in transplantation and the study of liver disease. Biologists and bioengineers at EPFL have designed a new method for growing simplified human mini-livers. Their process is a potentially important breakthrough in the quest for transplantable lab-grown tissues.

Health - Pharmacology - 10.07.2020
Basel study: Why lopinavir and lopinavir and hydroxychloroquine do not work on Covid-19
Basel study: Why lopinavir and lopinavir and hydroxychloroquine do not work on Covid-19
Lopinavir is a drug against HIV, hydroxychloroquine is used to treat malaria and rheumatism. Until recently, both drugs were regarded as potential agents in the fight against the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. A research group from the University of Basel and the University Hospital has now discovered that the concentration of the two drugs in the lungs of Covid-19 patients is not sufficient to fight the virus.

Life Sciences - Health - 08.07.2020
The IRB discovers the activation mechanism of the "police patrol" cells of our immune system
Nearly 200 billion nave T cells continuously patrol the human body in a dormant state, prepared to respond to potential threats. An international group of researchers, led by Dr. Roger Geiger of the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB, affiliated to USI), demonstrated how these cells sustain a constant state of preparedness.

Health - Life Sciences - 06.07.2020
Age-related impairments reversed in animal model
Age-related impairments reversed in animal model
Frailty and immune decline are two main features of old age. Researchers from the University of Bern and the University Hospital Bern now demonstrate in an animal model that these two age-related impairments can be halted and even partially reversed using a novel cell-based therapeutic approach. Elderly people are more prone to infectious diseases as the function of their immune system continuously declines with progression of age.

Health - Life Sciences - 02.07.2020
How the body fights off urinary tract infections
How the body fights off urinary tract infections
Some people are better protected than others against urinary tract infections. This may be because their bodies produce more of a protein called uromodulin. An interdisciplinary research team has now found out how this helper protein brings relief when nature calls and how this knowledge might benefit the treatment and prevention of these painful inflammations.

Environment - Health - 25.06.2020
Towards a Swiss Food Strategy for 2050
Towards a Swiss Food Strategy for 2050
NRP 69 recommends that the government develop a Swiss Food Strategy for 2050. This strategy should enable the entire population to eat healthy food sourced from a sustainable production and distribution system. Is it possible to follow a healthy diet that includes more vegetables, fruit and nuts while still reducing the environmental impact that consumption has both in Switzerland and abroad? Funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF), the National Research Programme "Healthy Eating and Sustainable Food Production" (NRP 69) believes it is.

Health - Computer Science - 24.06.2020
Swiss federal government officially launches the SwissCovid app
Swiss federal government officially launches the SwissCovid app
SwissCovid - a tracing app developed in part by EPFL - is being made available today to the general public, one month after the pilot tests began. The app will be a useful tool in stemming the spread of the disease as the number of cases in Switzerland is back on the rise. The World Health Organization was clear in its warning: the COVID-19 pandemic is not over, and in some places it's just as strong as ever.

Health - Computer Science - 24.06.2020
Technology talent increasingly drawn to pharma industry since COVID-19, to solve healthcare challenges
83% of technology (tech) professionals would consider working in healthcare and pharma, with 72% more likely to consider it compared to six months ago 86% of tech professionals agree: the healthcare and pharma industry's "digital moment" has arrived Report includes insights from Microsoft, MIT and Benevolent AI on the powerful pairing of science and technology to reimagine medicine.

Health - 11.06.2020
Our sleep during lockdown: longer and more regular, but worse
A survey conducted by the University of Basel and the Psychiatric Hospital of the University of Basel has investigated how sleep has changed during the Covid-19 lockdown. The 435 individuals surveyed - most of whom were women - reported sleeping longer but with a deterioration in sleep quality. The results of the study were published in the scientific journal Current Biology.

Materials Science - Health - 09.06.2020
First transparent surgical mask goes into production
First transparent surgical mask goes into production
Scientists of Empa and EPFL have developed a fully transparent surgical mask that will soon be produced on an industrial scale.

Life Sciences - Health - 09.06.2020
RedHUMAN: Deciphering links between genes and metabolism
RedHUMAN: Deciphering links between genes and metabolism
Scientists at EPFL have developed a new method that simplifies the processing of genetic-metabolic data by picking up changes in metabolism, a hallmark of numerous diseases like cancer and Alzheimer's. The new method, named redHUMAN, is robust and features guaranteed predictability. In the last two decades, the life sciences have seen a growing partnership with information technology.

Chemistry - Health - 08.06.2020
Standardizing organoid growth through controlled guidance systems
A recent innovation from an EPFL laboratory will enable, for the first time, mass production of standardized organoids. This breakthrough was achieved thanks to a customized guidance system that ensures homogenous cell culturing. Described in an article published today in Nature Biomedical Engineering, the technique paves the way for industrial uses, such as screening new drugs.

Chemistry - Health - 08.06.2020
Standardizing organoid growth through controlled cell culturing
A recent innovation from an EPFL laboratory will enable, for the first time, mass production of standardized organoids. This breakthrough was achieved thanks to a customized guidance system that ensures homogenous cell culturing. Described in an article published today in Nature Biomedical Engineering, the technique paves the way for industrial uses, such as screening new drugs.

Health - Pharmacology - 05.06.2020
Gene therapy to reverse vision loss in macular degeneration
Gene therapy to reverse vision loss in macular degeneration
Researchers have developed a strategy that has the potential to improve vision in patients with macular degeneration in the future. Using a gene therapy, they sensitized blind retinas of mice and human organ donors to near-infrared light. The team based at the Institute of Molecular and Clinical Ophthalmology Basel (IOB) has published its results .

Health - Life Sciences - 04.06.2020
Deadly bacterial infection in pigs deciphered
Deadly bacterial infection in pigs deciphered
New-born piglets often die painfully from infection with an intestinal bacterium. A team of researchers from 3 faculties at the University of Bern has now discovered how the bacterium causes fatal intestinal bleeding.

Life Sciences - Health - 03.06.2020
How bacteria fertilise soya
How bacteria fertilise soya
Soya and clover have their very own fertiliser factories in their roots, where bacteria manufacture ammonium, which is crucial for plant growth. Although this has long been common knowledge, scientists have only recently described the mechanism in detail. With biotechnology, this knowledge could now help make agriculture more sustainable.

Health - Life Sciences - 02.06.2020
A better model for neutrophil-related diseases
Neutrophils are critical immune cells for antimicrobial defense, but they can exacerbate a number of diseases, perhaps including COVID-19. The traditional approaches to study neutrophils in animal models are limited in specificity and effectiveness. EPFL scientists have now identified the problem and have developed a new, optimized model for studying the role of neutrophils in the context of disease.
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