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25 Current news of MPI für molekulare Zellbiologie und Genetikrss
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Researchers point to a new mechanism underlying male infertility
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 ...
First six reference-quality bat genomes released and analysed
For the first time, the raw genetic material that codes for bats’ unique adaptations and superpowers such as the ability to fly, to use sound to move effortlessly in complete darkness, to survive and tolerate deadly diseases, to resist ageing and cancer - has been fully revealed. Bat1K, a global ...
New chemical tools can control the concentration of lipids in living cells
Lipids, or fats, have many functions in our body: They form membrane barriers, store energy or act as messengers, which regulate cell growth and hormone release. Many of them are also biomarkers for severe diseases. So far, it has been very difficult to analyze the functions of these molecules in ...
Compact DNA organization improves vision in nocturnal mammals
One of the most remarkable characteristics of the vertebrate eye is its retina. Surprisingly, the sensitive portions of the photoreceptor cells are found on the hind side of the retina, meaning that light needs to travel through living neural tissue before it can be detected. While the origin of ...
Researchers engineer a minimal synthetic cellular system to study basic cell function
Cells are the basic unit of life. They provide an environment for the fundamental molecules of life to interact, for reactions to take place and sustain life. However, the biological cell is very complicated, making it difficult to understand what takes place inside it. One way to tackle this ...
Mechanism of action of human-specific brain size gene uncovered
The size of the human brain increased profoundly during evolution. A certain gene that is only found in humans triggers brain stem cells to form a larger pool of stem cells. As a consequence, more neurons can arise, which paves the way to a bigger brain. This brain size gene is called ARHGAP11B ...
Geometrical and functional liver model for improved diagnosis of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is characterized by the accumulation of fat in the liver with an insulin resistance due to causes other than alcohol intake. NAFLD includes a spectrum of liver diseases from simple steatosis (“non-progressive” and reversible) to non-alcoholic ...
Our organs are specialized compartments, each with its own milieu and function. To seal our organs, the cells in the tissue must form a barrier which is tight even down to the level of molecules. This barrier is formed by a protein complex that “sticks” all the cells together without any gaps. ...
First and new realistic 3D model of the liver lobule since the year 1949
The currently used simplified model of mammalian liver tissue can only show in a limited way how liver tissue is structured and formed. Almost 70 years later, researchers at the Max Planck Institutes of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics as well as for the Physics of Complex Systems together ...
Researchers show that membraneless microdroplets are a great place for RNA concentration and activity to enable the origin of life
How life arose from non-living chemicals more than 3.5 billion years ago on Earth is one of the deepest and still unanswered scientific questions. One hypothesis (RNA world hypothesis) assumes that RNA biomolecules were key players during this time (origin of life) as they carry genetic ...