Tag Archives: antibodies

Yale study: How antibodies access neurons to fight infection

Yale scientists have solved a puzzle of the immune system: how antibodies enter the nervous system to control viral infections. Their finding may have implications for the prevention and treatment of a range of conditions, including herpes and Guillain-Barre syndrome, which has been linked to the Zika virus. (more…)

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New Biochip Holds Great Promise for Quickly Triaging People after Radiation Exposure

Berkeley Lab scientists have helped to develop a tiny chip that has big potential for quickly determining whether someone has been exposed to dangerous levels of ionizing radiation.

The first-of-its-kind chip has an array of nanosensors that measure the concentrations of proteins that change after radiation exposure.

Although still under development, the technology could lead to a hand-held device that “lights up” if a person needs medical attention in the aftermath of an incident involving radiation. Initial tests on mice found that the technology only requires a drop of blood, measures radiation dose in minutes, and yields results up to seven days after exposure. (more…)

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IRCM scientists find a novel research model for the study of auto-immune diseases

A team of researchers at the IRCM, led by Dr. Javier M. Di Noia in the Immunity and Viral Infections research division, discovered a novel research model for the study of auto-immune diseases. The Montréal scientists are the first to find a way to separate two important mechanisms that improve the quality of antibodies. This study was featured in a recent issue of The Journal of Immunology.

Dr. Di Noia’s team studies B cells, a group of white blood cells known as lymphocytes whose main function is to produce antibodies to fight against antigens. Antibodies are proteins used by the immune system to identify and neutralize foreign objects (antigens), such as bacteria and viruses, by precisely binding to them, thus making them an essential part of the immune system. Antibodies can come in different varieties (or classes), which perform different roles and adapt the immune response to eliminate each different toxin or pathogen they encounter. The body’s great diversity of antibodies therefore allows the immune system to specifically neutralize an equally wide variety of antigens. (more…)

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Tenfold boost in ability to pinpoint proteins in cancer cells

Better diagnosis and treatment of cancer could hinge on the ability to better understand a single cell at its molecular level. New research offers a more comprehensive way of analyzing one cell’s unique behavior, using an array of colors to show patterns that could indicate why a cell will or won’t become cancerous.

A University of Washington team has developed a new method for color-coding cells that allows them to illuminate 100 biomarkers, a ten-time increase from the current research standard, to help analyze individual cells from cultures or tissue biopsies. The work is published this week (March 19) in Nature Communications. (more…)

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Electrically Spun Fabric Offers Dual Defense Against Pregnancy, HIV

The only way to protect against HIV and unintended pregnancy today is the condom. It’s an effective technology, but not appropriate or popular in all situations.

A University of Washington team has developed a versatile platform to simultaneously offer contraception and prevent HIV. Electrically spun cloth with nanometer-sized fibers can dissolve to release drugs, providing a platform for cheap, discrete and reversible protection. (more…)

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Analysis of Dinosaur Bone Cells Confirms Ancient Protein Preservation

A team of researchers from North Carolina State University and the Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) has found more evidence for the preservation of ancient dinosaur proteins, including reactivity to antibodies that target specific proteins normally found in bone cells of vertebrates. These results further rule out sample contamination, and help solidify the case for preservation of cells – and possibly DNA – in ancient remains.

Dr. Mary Schweitzer, professor of marine, earth and atmospheric sciences with a joint appointment at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, first discovered what appeared to be preserved soft tissue in a 67-million-year-old Tyrannosaurus Rex in 2005. Subsequent research revealed similar preservation in an even older (about 80-million-year-old)Brachylophosaurus canadensis. In 2007 and again in 2009, Schweitzer and colleagues used chemical and molecular analyses to confirm that the fibrous material collected from the specimens was collagen. (more…)

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Sticky Paper Offers Cheap, Easy Solution for Paper-Based Diagnostics

A current focus in global health research is to make medical tests that are not just cheap, but virtually free. One such strategy is to start with paper – one of humanity’s oldest technologies – and build a device like a home-based pregnancy test that might work for malaria, diabetes or other diseases.

A University of Washington bioengineer recently developed a way to make regular paper stick to medically interesting molecules. The work produced a chemical trick to make paper-based diagnostics using plain paper, the kind found at office supply stores around the world. (more…)

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Bacteria May Signal Pancreatic Cancer Risk

Pancreatic cancer is highly lethal and difficult to detect early. In a new study, researchers report that people who had high levels of antibodies for an infectious oral bacterium turned out to have double the risk for developing the cancer. High antibody levels for harmless oral bacteria, meanwhile, predicted a reduced pancreatic cancer risk.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — A new study finds significant associations between antibodies for multiple oral bacteria and the risk of pancreatic cancer, adding support for the emerging idea that the ostensibly distant medical conditions are related.

The study of blood samples from more than 800 European adults, published in the journal Gut, found that high antibody levels for one of the more infectious periodontal bacterium strains of Porphyromonas gingivalis were associated with a two-fold risk for pancreatic cancer. Meanwhile, study subjects with high levels of antibodies for some kinds of harmless “commensal” oral bacteria were associated with a 45-percent lower risk of pancreatic cancer. (more…)

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