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Health - Pharmacology - 18.09.2020
Increasing the effectiveness of immunotherapy against skin cancer
Increasing the effectiveness of immunotherapy against skin cancer
Researchers at the University of Bern have discovered a mechanism in the body's own immune system which is responsible for the maturing and activation of immune cells. In the fight against skin cancer, the results have the potential to help immunotherapy succeed, even for patients on whom it previously had no effect.

Life Sciences - Health - 18.09.2020
Bile acids boost gut regeneration
Bile acids boost gut regeneration
Researchers at EPFL have made a surprising discovery about how bile acids act as signaling molecules to boost intestinal regeneration. The discovery sheds light on the role of bile acids as hormone-like molecules and opens new ways for regenerative therapies of the gut. Intestinal stem cells replenish the cells lining the gut epithelium, which usually renews itself every week.

Life Sciences - Health - 16.09.2020
Next-gen organoids grow and function like real tissues
Bioengineers at EPFL have created miniature intestines in a dish that match up anatomically and functionally to the real thing better than any other lab-grown tissue models. The biological complexity and longevity of the new organoid technology is an important step towards enabling drug testing, personalized medicine, and perhaps, one day, transplantations.

Health - Pharmacology - 15.09.2020
Only One Third of Children Receive Appropriate Malaria Care
Only One Third of Children Receive Appropriate Malaria Care
Despite lots of progress made in the past decade, more than 270,000 children die from Malaria each year. Most of these deaths could be avoided through timely diagnosis and treatment. Despite better availability of tests and medication, a new study shows that large gaps remain in the quality of malaria care for children.

Life Sciences - Health - 14.09.2020
Mechanism discovered how the coronavirus hijacks the cell
Mechanism discovered how the coronavirus hijacks the cell
Researchers at ETH Zurich and the University of Bern have discovered a mechanism by which the corona virus manipulates human cells to ensure its own replication. This knowledge will help to develop drugs and vaccines against the corona virus. Like a pirate hijacking a ship, a virus takes control of an infected cell because every virus depends on the resources and molecular machines of the cell to multiply.

Health - Life Sciences - 10.09.2020
Stronger bones thanks to heat and microbiota
Stronger bones thanks to heat and microbiota
UNIGE Scientists demonstrate that warmth exposure improves bone strength, and decipher the role of gut microbiota in this phenomenon. This gives rise to innovative perspectives in the treatment of osteoporosis. Osteoporosis, a bone disease linked to ageing, is characterised by a loss of bone density, micro-architectural deterioration of the bones and an increased risk of fractures.

Life Sciences - Health - 10.09.2020
Restless nature of human spinal cord, non-invasive imaging reveals
Restless nature of human spinal cord, non-invasive imaging reveals
Scientists have developed a non-invasive technique for unraveling the complex dynamics generated by spinal cord circuits to unprecedented detail, a first in functional magnetic resonance imaging that may one day help diagnose spinal cord dysfunction or injury. The spinal cord roughly looks like a long tube, with a diameter of only 1.5 cm, and yet this crucial part of the nervous system is essential for controlling how our arms and legs move, for giving us our sense of touch as well as a notion of where our bodies are in space.

Life Sciences - Health - 09.09.2020
Muscle aging: Stronger for longer
Muscle aging: Stronger for longer
With life expectancy increasing, age-related diseases are also on the rise, including sarcopenia, the loss of muscle mass due to aging. Researchers from the University of Basel's Biozentrum have demonstrated that a well-known drug can delay the progression of age-related muscle weakness. The findings were recently published in -Nature Communications-.

Health - 08.09.2020
A lack of oxygen in tumors promotes metastasis
A lack of oxygen in tumors promotes metastasis
Metastases are formed by cancer cells that break away from the primary tumor. A research group at the University of Basel has now identified lack of oxygen as the trigger for this process. The results reveal an important relationship between the oxygen supply to tumors and the formation of metastases.

Life Sciences - Health - 28.08.2020
"Jumping" DNA regulates human neurons
"Jumping" sequences of DNA, known as transposable elements, partner up with evolutionarily recent proteins to influence the differentiation and physiological functioning of human neurons. The human genome contains over 4.5 million sequences of DNA called "transposable elements", these virus-like entities that "jump" around and help regulate gene expression.

Life Sciences - Health - 28.08.2020
How bacteria adhere to fiber in the gut
How bacteria adhere to fiber in the gut
Researchers have revealed a new molecular mechanism by which bacteria adhere to cellulose fibers in the human gut. Thanks to two different binding modes, they can withstand the shear forces in the body. Scientists of the University of Basel and ETH Zurich published their results in the journal "Nature Communications".

Life Sciences - Health - 26.08.2020
How Plants Close their Gates when Microbes Attack
Like humans, plants protect themselves against pathogens. An international consortium under the lead of UZH professor Cyril Zipfel has now identified a long sought-after factor of this plant immune system: The calcium channel triggers the closure of stomata upon contact with microbes such as bacteria.

Health - 26.08.2020
A model for keeping the pandemic in check in Italy
A model for keeping the pandemic in check in Italy
A team of researchers has been modeling the potential spread of the coronavirus pandemic in Italy. Using their model, they can calculate the number of exposed and highly infectious individuals and the daily isolation efforts required to bring down the epidemic curve. In April, a team led by Professor Andrea Rinaldo, the head of EPFL's Laboratory of Ecohydrology (ECHO), published a paper that presented a model for the spread of COVID-19 in Italy.

Health - Life Sciences - 25.08.2020
Discovery of new genes that influence the success of cancer treatment
Discovery of new genes that influence the success of cancer treatment
One of the great mysteries of cancer research is why certain patients respond better to radiation therapy than others. Researchers at the University of Bern have now discovered which genes play an important role in this. This results in new findings for cancer treatment. Radiotherapy is a cornerstone of today's cancer treatment.

Life Sciences - Health - 14.08.2020
How a protein stops cells from attacking their own DNA
How a protein stops cells from attacking their own DNA
Scientists at EPFL have demonstrated the mechanism that allows cells to fight off viral DNA without triggering an immune response against their own genetic material. Viruses multiply by injecting their DNA into a host cell. Once it enters the intracellular fluid, this foreign material triggers a defense mechanism known as the cGAS-STING pathway.

History / Archeology - Health - 13.08.2020
Syphilis May Have Spread through Europe before Columbus
Syphilis May Have Spread through Europe before Columbus
Columbus brought syphilis to Europe - or did he? A recent study conducted at the University of Zurich now indicates that Europeans could already have been infected with this sexually transmitted disease before the 15th century. In addition, researchers have discovered a hitherto unknown pathogen causing a related disease.

Life Sciences - Health - 13.08.2020
The (neuro)science of getting and staying motivated
Neuroscientists at EPFL and the University of Edinburgh have discovered that the degree of motivation and the stamina to keep it up depends on the ratio between the neurotransmitters glutamine and glutamate in the nucleus accumbens of the brain. There is no question that motivation is one of the hardest and yet important factors in life.

Psychology - Health - 12.08.2020
Trustful Collaboration Critical for Outcome of Therapy
Trustful Collaboration Critical for Outcome of Therapy
A trusting therapeutic relationship and outcome-oriented collaboration between therapist and patient are critical for the successful treatment of mental illness. And it pays to start early in therapy, a series of meta-studies by a task force of the American Psychological Association (APA) led by UZH psychology professor Christoph Flückiger shows.

Health - Social Sciences - 12.08.2020
COVID-19, and the pressure to emulate
A surprising finding emerges from observing how different countries, confronted with different conditions and different epidemiological circumstances, have acted against the spread of COVID-19: the same restrictive policies, instead of spreading gradually across the various countries, have been adopted more or less at the same time.

Health - Materials Science - 11.08.2020
A wound dressing that kills bacteria
A wound dressing that kills bacteria
In order to combat bacterial wound infections, Empa researchers have developed cellulose membranes equipped with antimicrobial peptides. Initial results show: The skin-friendly membranes made of plant-based materials kill bacteria very efficiently. If germs invade a wound, they can trigger a long-lasting infection that may fail to heal or even spread throughout the body, leading to life-threatening blood poisoning (sepsis).
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