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:: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 02-06-2013
Cells communicate in many ways. The can communicate through direct contact (juxtacrine signaling), over short distances (paracrine signaling), or over large distances (endocrine signaling). Until now, endocrine signaling research has focused primarily on hormones which can transverse relatively large distances in order to convey their message to target cells. Now, scientists at UCLA have discovered a previously unknown method of long distance cell-to-cell communication that does not involve the use of hormones.
In a study published in the American Journal of Translational Research, Dr. Keith Norris, senior author of the research and assistant dean for clinical and translational science at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, and his team found that cells located on the inside of a hormonally impervious membrane were able to receive messages regulating their calcium signaling pathways from cells located outside the membrane.
:: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 01-23-2013
Researchers from MIT have now found a safe and efficient way to get large molecules through the cell membrane, by squeezing the cells through a narrow constriction that opens up tiny, temporary holes in the membrane. Any large molecules floating outside the cell — such as RNA, proteins or nanoparticles — can slide through the membrane during this disruption.
:: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 12-06-2012
This past summer a group of artists and indie game developers in the Seattle area attempted to develop a super-cool video game that allowed player to explore the inside of a cell as if they were actually inside the 3D structure. Unfortunately, the team was unsuccessful in meeting its funding goal, however, they left a strong impresson on me and I believe that they have a product which can seriously help revitalize the biology classroom.
Checkut the video from Kinect Biology and give us your feedback. Do you think that there idea is worth funding?
:: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 09-18-2012
Researchers have developed a new way to observe and track large numbers of rapidly moving objects under a microscope, capturing precise motion paths in three dimensions.
Over the course of the study–reported online Sept. 17, 2012, in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences–researchers followed an unprecedented 24,000 rapidly moving cells over wide fields of view and through large sample volumes, recording each cell’s path for as long as 20 seconds.
“We can very precisely track the motion of small things, more than a thousand of them at the same time, in parallel,” says research lead and National Science Foundation CAREER awardee Aydogan Ozcan. an electrical engineering and bioengineering professor at UCLA. “We were able to achieve sub-micron accuracy over a large volume, allowing us to understand, statistically, how thousands of objects move in different ways.”
:: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 08-06-2012
Just as users of Google Earth can zoom in from space to a view of their own backyard, researchers can now navigate biological tissues from a whole embryo down to its subcellular structures thanks to recent advances in electron microscopy and image processing, as described in The Journal of Cell Biology (JCB). An upgrade to the JCB DataViewer (http://jcb-dataviewer.rupress.org), JCB’s browser-based image presentation tool, now also makes these data publicly accessible for exploration and discovery.