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Cells talk at each other to specialize different functions

New concept to describe how cells specialize during development

23-Feb-2021

During development, cells must specialize their function in a well defined timeline: formation of different tissues must be coordinated from a pile of cells. The research group led by Aneta Koseska (former Max Planck Institute of Molecular Physiology (MPI), CAESAR Bonn) has now developed a new ...

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Neandertal gene variants and Covid-19

Neandertal gene variants both increase and decrease the risk for severe Covid-19

18-Feb-2021

Last year, researchers atthe Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, and at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden showed that a major genetic risk factor for severe Covid-19 is inherited from Neandertals. Now the same researchers show, that Neandertals also contributed ...

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Genotoxic E. coli “caught in the act”

Researchers reveal transformation of colon organoids in vitro

17-Feb-2021

Escherichia coli bacteria are constitutive members of the human gut microbiota. However, some strains produce a genotoxin called colibactin, which is implicated in the development of colorectal cancer. While it has been shown that colibactin leaves very specific changes in the DNA of host cells ...

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How humans affect indoor air

How we choose to live will impact the indoor chemistry

11-Feb-2021

Humans emit significant amounts of chemical compounds in indoor environments. Several studies published by scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry now show the extent to which we influence the air in enclosed spaces. Human bodies can have a strong impact on the chemical composition ...

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Tracing the path of leukemia

Chemical signature of chronic lymphocytic leukemia already present in the precancerous stage

26-Jan-2021

B-cell lymphocytosis, a condition in which individuals have increased levels of particular white blood cells, in some cases leads to blood cancer. As an international team of researchers now shows in samples from patients, both diseases exhibit similar epigenetic signatures that are forming very ...

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We Wouldn’t Be Able to Control Superintelligent Machines

Would the AI cure cancer, bring about world peace, and prevent a climate disaster? Or would it destroy humanity and take over the Earth?

12-Jan-2021

We are fascinated by machines that can control cars, compose symphonies, or defeat people at chess, Go, or Jeopardy! While more progress is being made all the time in Artificial Intelligence (AI), some scientists and philosophers warn of the dangers of an uncontrollable superintelligent AI. Using ...

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Keeping Sperm Cells on Track

Researchers point to a new mechanism underlying male infertility

11-Jan-2021

One essential component of each eukaryotic cell is the cytoskeleton. Microtubules, tiny tubes consisting of a protein called tubulin, are part of this skeleton of cells. Cilia and flagella, which are antenna-like structures that protrude from most of the cells in our body, contain many ...

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A clear path to better insights into biomolecules

3D images with record-breaking resolution

06-Jan-2021

An international team of scientists, led by Kartik Ayyer from the MPSD, has obtained some of the sharpest possible 3D images of gold nanoparticles. The resuts lay the foundation for obtaining high resolution images of macromolecules. The study was carried out at the European XFEL’s Single ...

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Starved – New drug inhibits the growth of cancer cells

Blocking gene expression in mitochondria in mice stops cancer cells from growing

18-Dec-2020

A newly developed compound starves cancer cells by attacking their “power plants” – the so-called mitochondria. The new compound prevents the genetic information within mitochondria from being read. Researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Biology of Ageing, the Karolinska Institute in ...

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Embryonic development in a Petri dish

3D cell culturing technique could replace mouse embryos

14-Dec-2020

By growing mouse stem cells in a special gel, a Berlin research team succeeded to grow structures similar to parts of an embryo. The trunk-like structures develop the precursors for neural, bone, cartilage and muscle tissues from cellular clumps within five days. This could allow the ...

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