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Human cloning success triggers review of regulations

By | November 29, 2001

The announcement that a human embryo has been cloned reignites the legal and moral debates.

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Regulating the hypoxia response

By | November 29, 2001

Hypoxia-inducible transcription factors (HIFs) control the changes in gene expression that are critical for allowing cells to adapt to limited oxygen levels. In the November 29 Nature, Yuichi Makino and colleagues describe the cloning of a new inhibitor of the transcriptional response to hypoxic conditions (Nature 2001, 414:550-554).Makino et al. mined mouse EST databases in search of HIF homologues and identified a new gene, IPAS, encoding a protein containing a motif (bHLH PAS) that is found i

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Predicting promoters

By | November 28, 2001

Finding the beginning of genes within genomic sequence presents a formidable challenge to projects to annotate the human genome sequence. In the Advanced Online Publication of Nature Genetics Ramana Davuluri and colleagues at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, in New York describe a bioinformatic strategy to predict gene promoters and first exons (Nat Genet 2001, DOI: 10.1038/ng780).They developed a new program, called FirstEF, that attempts to predict the starts of genes. They collected over two th

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Radiation resistance genes discovered

By | November 28, 2001

Analysis of gene function in radiation exposed yeast cells reveals many more cellular pathways are affected than previously thought.

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Which antiretrovirals?

By | November 28, 2001

There are currently 17 different antiretroviral drugs available for the treatment of HIV, but the efficacy of a specific drug for a particular individual is very difficult to predict. In November 24 Lancet Michael Polis and colleagues from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Bethesda, US, show that changes in HIV-1 concentration at day 6 after the start of antiretroviral treatment is a good early measure of individual long-term responses.Polis et al. analysed the kinetics

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Dendritic vaccination for HIV patients

By | November 27, 2001

, a frequent opportunistic infection of immunocompromised hosts.

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Type I diabetes protective peptide

By | November 27, 2001

A modified cell surface peptide could herald a breakthrough in the treatment of autoimmune diseases.

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Arsenic and old telomerase

By | November 26, 2001

Although arsenic is effective in the treatment of acute promyelocytic leukemia it also has carcinogenic side effects, but the exact carcinogenic mechanisms remain unclear. In November Journal of Clinical Investigation Wen-Chien Chou and colleagues from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, US show that at clinically relevant doses arsenic inhibits the transcription of the reverse transcriptase subunit of the human telomerase gene (hTERT).Chou et al. found that exposing NB4 leuk

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Limited variation

By | November 26, 2001

Small differences in DNA sequence are thought to account for the wide variation between people. In the November 23 Science, Nila Patil and researchers at Perlegen Sciences Inc. in California, suggest that the differences might be less than we had thought (Science 2001, 294:1719-1723).They set out to map a large number of common single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) on human chromosome 21 and to define their haplotype structure. They took a panel of 24 individuals and used a rodent-human somatic

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Never the European twain shall meet

By | November 26, 2001

Despite months of consultation the UK and the EU remain divided over therapeutic cloning.

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