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» immunology and evolution

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image: Bat Hunt

Bat Hunt

By | January 1, 2012

Bucknell University mammalogist DeeAnn Reeder raises nets high into the darkened forest canopies of South Sudan to catch bats.

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image: Early Bird Plumage

Early Bird Plumage

By | September 15, 2011

After rummaging through thousands of amber inclusions housed at the University of Alberta and the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Paleontology in Canada, researchers discovered 11 amber encased-feather fossils that provide the most detailed picture yet of early feather evolution.

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image: The Cytokine Cycle

The Cytokine Cycle

By | September 1, 2011

The initiating cause of Alzheimer’s disease is still unknown. However, from our studies it’s clear that many types of neuronal damage—­­from traumatic brain injury, to epilepsy, infection, or genetic predisposition—­can activate brain immune cells—microglia and astrocytes-- promoting them to produce IL-1 and S100 inflammatory cytokines.

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image: Repainting Ancient Birds

Repainting Ancient Birds

By | July 1, 2011

Using synchrotron rapid scanning X-ray fluorescence to map the distribution of trace metals in avian fossils over 120 million-year-old, researchers reconstruct the pigment patterns of their feathers—revealing some of the extinct birds' long-lost colors.

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image: One Hip Dino

One Hip Dino

By | June 13, 2011

University College London researcher Mike Taylor recounts the discovery of a new dinosaur with unusually powerful thigh muscles. Read the full story.

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image: The Anatomy of a High

The Anatomy of a High

By | June 3, 2011

When someone snorts or smokes cocaine, which is composed of small crystalline alkaloid molecules, the drug enters the bloodstream and from there eventually crosses into the heart, brain, and other organs. 

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image: Part Human, Part HIV

Part Human, Part HIV

By | June 3, 2011

Like other enveloped viruses, HIV exits its host cell enshrouded in the cell’s membrane, which contains membrane molecules such as the human leukocyte antigens (HLA). 

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image: Micro Farmers

Micro Farmers

By | May 1, 2011

Columbia University evolutionary ecologist Dustin Rubenstein explains just why it's so interesting and important to find slime molds that engage in a form of agriculture.

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image: Where Cancer and Inflammation Intersect

Where Cancer and Inflammation Intersect

By | April 1, 2011

Recent clinical trials have reignited the interest in simple anti-inflammatory drugs like aspirin for controlling the inflammation associated with cancer. 

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image: Epigenetics—A Primer

Epigenetics—A Primer

By | March 1, 2011

Epigenetic events regulate the activities of genes without changing the DNA sequence. Different genes are expressed depending on the methyl-marks attached to DNA itself and by changes in the structure and/or composition of chromatin. 

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