Tag Archives: liver

Using a novel biological clock, UCLA researchers find that obesity accelerates aging of the liver

Using a recently developed biomarker of aging known as an epigenetic clock, UCLA researchers working closely with a German team of investigators have found for the first time that obesity greatly accelerates aging of the liver. This finding could explain the early onset of many age-related diseases, including liver cancer, in people who are obese. (more…)

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Study investigates extraordinary trout with tolerance to heavily polluted water

New research from the University of Exeter and King’s College London has shown how a population of brown trout can survive in the contaminated waters of the River Hayle in Cornwall where metal concentrations are so high they would be lethal to fish from unpolluted sites.

The team believe this is due to changes in the expression of their genes. The research was funded by NERC and the Salmon and Trout Association.

The researchers compared the trout living in the River Hayle with a population living in a relatively clean site in the River Teign. The results showed that the accumulation of metals in the kidney and liver – where metals are stored and detoxified – were 19 and 34 times higher in the  Hayle trout, respectively. In the gill, concentrations averaging 63 times higher were present in the Hayle fish, but there were no differences in metal content in the gut. This accumulation of metals in the Hayle fish highlights their extraordinary tolerance of the extreme metal concentrations in their environment. (more…)

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Reducing arsenic in food chain

Soil may harbor answer to reducing arsenic in rice

Harsh Bais and Janine Sherrier of the University of Delaware’s Department of Plant and Soil Sciences are studying whether a naturally occurring soil bacterium, referred to asUD1023 because it was first characterized at the University, can create an iron barrier in rice roots that reduces arsenic uptake.

Rice, grown as a staple food for a large portion of the world’s population, absorbs arsenic from the environment and transfers it to the grain. Arsenic is classified as a poison by the National Institutes of Health and is considered a carcinogen by the National Toxicology Program. (more…)

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U of T Researchers Uncover Major Source of Evolutionary Differences among Species

TORONTO, ON – University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine researchers have uncovered a genetic basis for fundamental differences between humans and other vertebrates that could also help explain why humans are susceptible to diseases not found in other species.

Scientists have wondered why vertebrate species, which look and behave very differently from one another, nevertheless share very similar repertoires of genes. For example, despite obvious physical differences, humans and chimpanzees share a nearly identical set of genes. (more…)

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Bilirubin Can Prevent Damage from Cardiovascular Disease, MU Researchers Find

COLUMBIA, Mo. ­— Each year, about 610,000 Americans suffer their first heart attack, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Heart attacks and other symptoms of cardiovascular disease can be caused when blockage occurs in the arteries. In a new study from the University of Missouri, a scientist has discovered a natural defense against arterial blockage: bilirubin.

Bilirubin is typically something parents of newborns hear about when their children are diagnosed with jaundice. Generated during the body’s process to recycle worn-out red blood cells, bilirubin is metabolized by the liver and, usually, leaves the body harmlessly. (Many babies’ livers are not developed enough to metabolize the bilirubin, which results in the infants being diagnosed with jaundice, or high levels of bilirubin in their systems.) Now, MU scientists have found that bilirubin can be used to inhibit the clogging of arteries, and thus prevent the deadly consequences often experienced by individuals with cardiovascular disease. (more…)

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Researchers Find Potential Cancer Roadblock

EAST LANSING, Mich. — By identifying a key protein that tells certain breast cancer cells when and how to move, researchers at Michigan State University hope to better understand the process by which breast cancer spreads, or metastasizes.

When breast cancer metastasizes, cancer cells break away from a primary tumor and move to other organs in the body, including the lungs, liver and brain. In work published recently in the journal Cancer Research, MSU researchers Kathy Gallo and Jian Chen show a protein called MLK3 (mixed lineage kinase 3) is a critical driver of breast cancer cell migration and invasion. (more…)

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Walk of A Lifetime Promotes Organ Donation

Donating part of his liver and a kidney to two different recipients was not enough for Harry Kiernan. The Vietnam veteran and firefighter is now taking his efforts to raise awareness about organ donation many steps further by walking across the United States.

Kiernan’s 3,300-mile journey began on March 19 at Yale-New Haven Hospital, where a kick off ceremony for “Walk of 2012,” took place under the Donate Life flag near the hospital’s entrance. (more…)

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Scientists Pinpoint How Vitamin D May Help Clear Amyloid Plaques Found in Alzheimer’s

A team of academic researchers has identified the intracellular mechanisms regulated by vitamin D3 that may help the body clear the brain of amyloid beta, the main component of plaques associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

Published in the March 6 issue of the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, the early findings show that vitamin D3 may activate key genes and cellular signaling networks to help stimulate the immune system to clear the amyloid-beta protein. (more…)

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