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Posted by bio_man   December 31, 2018   937 views

To produce cellular energy, nearly all multicellular organisms use a series of highly specialized proteins embedded in the inner member of the mitochondria to transport and pump electrons, collectively known as the electron transport chain. A new study has revealed that this is not the case in European mistletoes, the traditional Christmas ornament hung to give someone a kiss underneath it.

After sequencing the organism's genome, researchers couldn't find any mitochondrial genes for coding the protein subunits that make up the electron transport chain’s first station, called complex I. To find out which parts of the assembly line machinery had disappeared, researchers extracted proteins from mitochondria in the mistletoe's leaves and compar [ ... ]

Mitochondria Evolution ATP Synthesis Christmas
Posted in Research
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Posted by bio_man   December 30, 2018   1028 views

In a recent study, scientists delivered a molecule called FKBP1b into the central memory station found in the brain of aging rats. Upon administrating the molecule, hundreds of formally active genes were reactivated, in a pattern that closely resembles those of younger, more mentally agile rats than aged ones. As a result, the rats showed enhanced learning and appeared to reverse memory shortfalls when tackling a maze. These findings suggest that the mental rustiness which accompanies aging happens because the amount of this one molecule goes down; a follow up study is currently in the works to see why that is.

[ ... ]

Aging Rats Study Cognition Brain Memory
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Posted by bio_man   November 21, 2018   3027 views

The residents of Utqiaġvik, Alaska (formerly known as Barrow), saw the final sunset for 2018 last Sunday. The city is currently in complete darkness until the sun rises on January 23, 2019, which is when residents begin to see touches of light over the horizon again (due to the refraction and scattering of the atmosphere).

Between November 18 and January 23, there is a decreasing amount of twilight each day (see illustration below) during the first half of the polar night, and on the winter solstice (around December 21 or December 22), civil twilight in Utqiagvik lasts for a mere 3 hours. By January 27 or 28, the sun rises completely over the horizon.

Utqiaġvik is one of the northernmost public communities in the world and is the northernmo [ ... ]

North Pole Winter Solstice Geography Alaska
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I didn't know that
Posted on Nov 22, 2018 by bolbol
Posted by bio_man   November 14, 2018   2972 views

An experimental "vaccine" for celiac disease is set to be tested in a new clinical trial to see if the treatment can protect patients with the condition from the effects of eating gluten — or, in other words, allow those patients to eat gluten safely.

The treatment, called Nexvax2 and made by the biotech company ImmusanT Inc., is a type of immunotherapy that aims to "reprogram" the immune system to be tolerant of gluten, the researchers said.

Celiac disease is a condition in which people's immune systems react abnormally to gluten — a protein found in wheat, rye and barley — and this reaction damages the lining of the small intestine. The condition affects about 1 out of every 100 people in the United States.

Currently, the only way to manage [ ... ]

Vaccines Diets Celiac Disease Digestion
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Posted by bio_man   November 9, 2018   1972 views
If you're planning on buying your loved one a gift during the Christmas holiday, this may interest you.

At Christmas and birthdays, aunts, uncles, grandparents, and parents give gifts to their college-aged loved ones. Joel Waldfogel, an economist at Yale University, surveyed several thousand college students after Christmas to find out the value of holiday gifts as perceived by the students. He found that technology and outerwear (coats and jackets) had a perceived value about equal to their actual cash value. By the time he got down to socks, underwear, and cosmetics, the students’ evaluation was only about 85 percent of the cash value of the gift.

Now knowing this information may prompt you to believe that substituting physical gifts with [ ... ]

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