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Life Sciences - Chemistry
22.08.2017
How a bacterium can live on methanol
How a bacterium can live on methanol
ETH Zurich researchers have identified all the genes required by a bacterium to use methanol as a food source. The results will help scientists advance the use of this resource in the field of biotechnology. Many chemists are currently researching how small carbon molecules, such as methane and methanol, can be used to generate larger molecules.
Life Sciences - Medicine/Pharmacology
18.08.2017
Bacteria stab amoebae with daggers
Bacteria stab amoebae with daggers
Researchers from ETH Zurich and the University of Vienna have discovered a type of bacteria that uses tiny daggers to prevent itself from being eaten by amoebae. The scientists also resolved the three-dimensional structure of the mechanism that allows the micro-daggers to be shot quickly. Bacteria have to watch out for amoeba.
Life Sciences - Chemistry
17.08.2017
More than just spilling the beans
More than just spilling the beans
Because of their high nitrogen content, spent coffee grounds are a popular garden fertilizer. Recycled in this manner, they already contribute to an environmentally friendly waste management. But they have the potential to deliver much more: a new procedure developed at the PSI allows high quality methane to be formed from spent coffee grounds.
Life Sciences - Medicine/Pharmacology
08.08.2017
Multi-nutrient rice against malnutrition
Multi-nutrient rice against malnutrition
ETH researchers have developed a new rice variety that not only has increased levels of the micronutrients iron and zinc in the grains, but also produces beta-carotene as a precursor of vitamin A&per
Life Sciences - Medicine/Pharmacology
31.07.2017
Cell senescence is regulated by innate DNA sensing
Cell senescence is regulated by innate DNA sensing
EPFL scientists have made new insights into the control of cell senescence, which is intimately linked to the development of cancer and ageing. Cells in the body or in cultures eventually stop replicating. This phenomenon is called "senescence" and is triggered by shortening of telomeres, oxidative stress or genetic damage to the cells, either acute or simply due to the cell growing "old".
Environment/Sustainable Development - Life Sciences
26.07.2017
Not air con, but a cooling curtain
Not air con, but a cooling curtain
Climate change is leading to ever higher temperatures and aridity in many areas, making efficient room cooling increasingly important.
Medicine/Pharmacology - Life Sciences
25.07.2017
Shedding Light on Cause of Resistance to Tumor Immunotherapy
Shedding Light on Cause of Resistance to Tumor Immunotherapy
Cancer is the second most common cause of death worldwide. Until recently, the chances of cure for patients suffering from metastatic cancer were low, as with such cancer the surgical removal of dista
Life Sciences - Medicine/Pharmacology
24.07.2017
A toolbox for creating new drugs
A toolbox for creating new drugs
ETH microbiologists led by Markus Künzler have discovered a remarkable enzyme in a fungus. They now want to use it to develop new drugs.
Medicine/Pharmacology - Life Sciences
19.07.2017
Titanium Dioxide Nanoparticles Can Exacerbate Colitis
Titanium Dioxide Nanoparticles Can Exacerbate Colitis
The frequency of inflammatory bowel disease like Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis has been on the rise in many Western countries for decades.
Medicine/Pharmacology - Life Sciences
18.07.2017
The genetics of severe illness in children with the common cold
The genetics of severe illness in children with the common cold
EPFL scientists have discovered gene variants that make children life-threatening susceptible to common-cold viruses. Although most children can handle viral respiratory infections like the common cold, about 2% of children become sick enough to require hospitalization. There are some known risk factors for this, but severe illness still affects 1 in 1000 previously healthy kids.
Life Sciences - Medicine/Pharmacology
18.07.2017
A gene increases the severity of common colds
A gene increases the severity of common colds
Researchers funded by the SNSF have discovered mutations that worsen respiratory infections among children. Their study explain the mechanism involved. Colds that are not linked to influenza are generally benign. Still, 2% of each generation of children have to go to hospital following a virulent infection.
Life Sciences - Medicine/Pharmacology
17.07.2017
New bacterial defense mechanism of the CRISPR-Cas system uncovered
New bacterial defense mechanism of the CRISPR-Cas system uncovered
The CRISPR-Cas system is an immune system that is found in many bacteria. It provides protection from viruses and other molecular parasites that can invade the bacterium and take over its genome. In these systems, the immunity is mediated by a complex multi-protein molecular machinery that uses RNA molecules as molecular guides to recognize the invader and target it for destruction.
Social Sciences - Life Sciences
13.07.2017
How social rank can trigger vulnerability to stress
How social rank can trigger vulnerability to stress
EPFL scientists have identified rank in social hierarchies as a major determining factor for vulnerability to chronic stress. They also show that energy metabolism in the brain is a predictive biomarker for social status as well as stress vulnerability and resilience. Stress is a major risk factor for a range of psychopathologies.
Life Sciences - Chemistry
12.07.2017
RNA Molecules Live Short Lives
RNA Molecules Live Short Lives
A research group at the Biozentrum, University of Basel, has developed a new method to measure the half-life of RNA molecules. The study revealed that commonly used methods provide distorted results and that RNA molecules live an average of only two minutes, ten times shorter than previously assumed.
Life Sciences
12.07.2017
Obstacle course for caterpillars
Obstacle course for caterpillars
Spines and thorns keep hungry mammals at bay - or at least, that's the conventional wisdom. However, ETH researchers have now shown that spiky growths on plants make life difficult for caterpillars too. This finding could be important for crop breeding. "Caterpillars can occasionally be skewered by the spines," says Rupesh Kariyat, a scientist at ETH Zurich's Institute of Integrative Biology.
Life Sciences
11.07.2017
Generous people live happier lives
Generous people live happier lives
What some have been aware of for a long time, others find hard to believe: Those who are concerned about the well-being of their fellow human beings are happier than those who focus only on their own advancement. Doing something nice for another person gives many people a pleasant feeling that behavioral economists call a warm glow .
Life Sciences - Medicine/Pharmacology
06.07.2017
How Cats and Cows Protect Farm Children from Asthma
How Cats and Cows Protect Farm Children from Asthma
More and more people suffer from allergies and asthma. In the past decades, these diseases have massively increased in industrialized countries. Today, about 30 percent of children have allergies - with the exception of farm children. Among farm children, the disease is increasing less dramatically than in the case of their friends who live in the same village, but not on a farm.
Life Sciences
30.06.2017
Ancient Swiss Reptile Shows Its Bizarre Scale Armor for the First Time
Ancient Swiss Reptile Shows Its Bizarre Scale Armor for the First Time
About 20 centimeters in length, the Swiss reptile was small and juvenile, but its skin was already strongly armored with variously formed smooth, jagged or even thorny osteoderms. Its skeleton indicates a life on land, even though the animal was found together with fish and marine reptiles in the 241 million year old calcareous deposits of the Prosanto Formation near Ducanfurgga at an altitude of 2,740 meters south of Davos in the canton Grisons, Switzerland.
Life Sciences - Medicine/Pharmacology
29.06.2017
Overactive Scavenger Cells May Cause Neurodegeneration in Alzheimer's
Overactive Scavenger Cells May Cause Neurodegeneration in Alzheimer’s
Similar to other neurodegenerative disorders, Alzheimer's is a disease in which the cognitive abilities of afflicted persons continuously worsen. The reason is the increasing loss of synapses, the contact points of the neurons, in the brain. In the case of Alzheimer's, certain protein fragments, the β-amyloid peptides, are suspected of causing the death of neurons.
Life Sciences - Mathematics
27.06.2017
How species arise: a mathematical answer
How species arise: a mathematical answer
Predicting when and how species arise is now possible with a new theoretical model using genome-wide data, developed by SIB and University of Bern researcher Simon Aeschbacher and colleagues.
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