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Proteasome inhibitors to treat psoriasis

By | March 12, 2002

Psoriasis is a chronic skin inflammation that may involve bacterial superantigens, but the inflammatory mechanisms and T cell responses remain poorly understood. In March 1 Journal of Clinical Investigation Thomas Zollner and colleagues from JW Goethe University of Frankfurt, Germany, show that proteasome inhibition reduces superantigen-mediated T cell activation and the severity of psoriasis in a SCID-hu model.Zollner et al. used human psoriatic skin tissue engrafted onto mice and observed that

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Antisense spuds

By | March 11, 2002

Unmodified starches present a problem to the frozen food industry as they tend to result in poor texture upon cycles of freeze-thawing. In March Nature Biotechnology, Stephen Jobling and colleagues describe a genetic solution to generating freeze-thaw-stable starch (Nat Biotechnol 2002, 20:295-299).Jobling et al. created potato plants with reduced levels of the three starch synthase genes using triple antisense technology. The authors showed that the there was an efficient downregulation of the

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-GalCer

By | March 8, 2002

-galactosylceramide can boost vaccine induced cellular immunity.

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L'Oreal and UNESCO recognize exceptional women in science

By | March 8, 2002

L'Oreal and UNESCO have honored 16 women for their outstanding contributions to science.

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Proteome purification

By | March 8, 2002

In the March 5 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Pascal Braun and colleagues describe a methodology to perform high-throughput purification of human proteins using several affinity-tags (Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 2002, 99:2654-2659).Braun et al. exploited the Gateway recombinational cloning system that employs a versatile 'master' vector for easy transfer into different expression vectors. They chose a test set of 32 human genes and expressed them in four different vectors with diffe

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Indomethacin inhibits CMV replication

By | March 7, 2002

Inhibitors of cyclooxygenase 2 block the replication of cytomegalovirus in human fibroblasts.

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Shotgun strategies

By | March 7, 2002

One year after the two human draft genome sequences were published the debate over sequencing strategies continues.

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US cloning debate gathers steam

By | March 7, 2002

US Senate debates bill aimed at banning both therapeutic and reproductive cloning.

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Cytomegalovirus control

By | March 6, 2002

The IE86 protein of human cytomegalovirus is an 'immediate early' viral protein that drives cells into S phase, but blocks cell division. In the March 5 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Yoon-Jae Song and Mark Stinski describe a microarray analysis of the effects of IE86 expression on the human transcriptome (Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 2002, 99:2836-2841).Song and Stinski infected human foreskin fibroblast cells with a replication-defective adenovirus encoding the IE86 protein, then i

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PRIMA facie evidence

By | March 6, 2002

The tumor suppressor p53 triggers cell-cycle arrest and apoptosis but about 50% of human tumors have mutations in p53 which makes them resistant to apoptosis. Vladimir Bykov and colleagues from Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden hypothesized that restoring p53 in tumor cells could trigger massive apoptosis and eliminate the tumor. In March Nature Medicine, they show that a small molecule, called PRIMA-1, can restore the tumor suppressor function of p53 and have anti-tumor effects.Bykov et

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