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» disease/medicine and techniques

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Saving Rwanda's Gorillas

By | October 1, 2011

In late June 2009, a small group of mountain gorillas in Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park began to fall ill. One by one, 11 of the dozen apes started exhibiting severe respiratory problems. 

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image: Swallowing the Surgeon

Swallowing the Surgeon

By | October 1, 2011

In fewer than 15 years, nanomedicine has gone from fantasy to reality.

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image: The Seat of Memory

The Seat of Memory

By | September 1, 2011

Early on, researchers had learned that the hippocampus was the structure in the brain where long-term memories were created and stored, but it was not known whether the different cell types within this structure might be more or less susceptible to the aging process.

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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: Battling Malaria in Africa

Battling Malaria in Africa

By | August 1, 2011

When general practitioner John Lusingu returned to his native Tanzania to do research on malaria, he was met with a total lack of science infrastructure. 

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image: Helpful Bacterial Metabolites

Helpful Bacterial Metabolites

By | August 1, 2011

While gut microbiota appear to have both positive and negative impacts on our  health, in the guts of healthy, lean individuals, the good outweighs the bad.  

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image: Harmful Bacterial Metabolites

Harmful Bacterial Metabolites

By | August 1, 2011

Gut bacteria that feed on healthy food appear to amplify the nutritional benefits of those foods. However, they also appear to amplify the undesirable effects of unhealthy food. 

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image: The Right Sort

The Right Sort

By | August 1, 2011

Isolating specific cell types from a mass of plant or animal tissue is laborious and tricky. 

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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: OPSINS: Tools of the trade

OPSINS: Tools of the trade

By | July 1, 2011

The optogenetic toolset is composed of genetically encoded molecules that, when targeted to specific neurons in the brain, enable the electrical activity of those neurons to be driven or silenced by light. 

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