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Flies' disease-carrying potential may be greater than thought, researchers say
Flies' disease-carrying potential may be greater than thought, researchers say 28 November 2017A new study adds further proof to the suspicion that houseflies and blowflies carry and spread a variety of species of bacteria that are harmful to humans.
Survival of the least-fit: antiviral drug selectively targets the nastiest viruses
Survival of the least-fit: antiviral drug selectively targets the nastiest viruses 08 November 2017An antiviral drug that inhibits a virus' replication machinery selectively targets the most-aggressive viruses, according to new research that looked at the infection of individual cells by a virus and the consequence of antiviral intervention.
Cryo-electron microscope to bring life sciences and materials sciences together
Cryo-electron microscope to bring life sciences and materials sciences together 06 November 2017A new cryo-electron microscope, cryo-EM, that is also a spectrometer will bring life science methods together with materials science practices together to improve both fields and share methods across disciplines.
Identifying the mechanism for a new class of antiviral drugs could hasten their approval
Identifying the mechanism for a new class of antiviral drugs could hasten their approval 24 October 2017New research shows that a new class of antiviral drugs works by causing the virus’ replication machinery to pause and backtrack, preventing the virus from efficiently replicating.
Exploring how herpes simplex virus changes when passed between family members
Exploring how herpes simplex virus changes when passed between family members 20 October 2017A new study explores how herpes simplex virus might change when passed from one individual to another, information that may prove useful in future development of therapeutics and vaccines.
Renewable resource: sulfur is used, replenished to produce lipoic acid
Renewable resource: sulfur is used, replenished to produce lipoic acid 19 October 2017New research shows how a protein is consumed and then reconstituted during the production of lipoic acid, a compound required by our bodies to convert energy from food into a form that can be used by our cells.
New statistical method for evaluating reproducibility in studies of genome organization
New statistical method for evaluating reproducibility in studies of genome organization 03 October 2017A new, statistical method to evaluate the reproducibility of data from Hi-C -- a cutting-edge tool for studying how the genome works in three dimensions inside of a cell -- will help ensure that the data in these “big data” studies is reliable.
$4.92M gift to Penn State for new industrial biotechnology center
$4.92M gift to Penn State for new industrial biotechnology center 19 September 2017CSL Behring, a global specialty biotherapeutics leader, has committed $4.92 million to Penn State over the next six years to create the multidisciplinary Center of Excellence in Biotechnology, and to revitalize the Shared Fermentation Facility, an engine for collaboration and innovation in biological training and research on the University Park campus.
Out through the window: Crystal structure reveals details of nonstandard RNA transcription
Out through the window:  Crystal structure reveals details of nonstandard RNA transcription 21 August 2017High-resolution crystal structure reveals a new pathway for RNA during a nontraditional form of transcription.
New, more sensitive sensor for evaluating drug safety
New, more sensitive sensor for evaluating drug safety 03 August 2017A new technique for evaluating drug safety can detect stress on cells at earlier stages than conventional methods, which mostly rely on detecting cell death. The new method uses a fluorescent sensor that is turned on in a cell when misfolded proteins begin to aggregate -- an early sign of cellular stress.
Malaria parasites sense and adapt to their host’s nutritional status
Malaria parasites sense and adapt to their host’s nutritional status 05 July 2017A new study shows that the infectious agent responsible for malaria, the Plasmodium parasite, is able to sense its host’s nutritional status and actively adapt through changes in gene expression to reduce the number of offspring it produces.
Genes, Ozone, and Autism: Increased risk for autism when genetic variation and air pollution meet
Genes, Ozone, and Autism: Increased risk for autism when genetic variation and air pollution meet 22 June 2017A new analysis shows that individuals with high levels of genetic variation and elevated exposure to ozone in the environment are at an even higher risk for developing autism than would be expected by adding the two risk factors together.
Potential new target for antimalarial drugs identified
Potential new target for antimalarial drugs identified 14 June 2017A newly described protein could be an effective target for combatting drug-resistant malaria parasites. The protein, the transcription factor PfAP2-I, regulates a number of genes involved with the parasite’s invasion of red blood cells, a critical part of the parasite’s complex life cycle that could be targeted by new antimalarial drugs
Penn State DNA ladders: inexpensive molecular rulers for DNA research
Penn State DNA ladders: inexpensive molecular rulers for DNA research 26 May 2017New, license-free DNA ladders will allow researchers to estimate the size of fragments of DNA for a fraction of the cost of currently available methods.
Penn State and Geisinger team up in new program to train next generation of biomedical scientists
27 April 2017A new $2.4-million program for graduate students seeking to contribute to breakthrough discoveries in medicine and biology has been established at Penn State University. The new Biomedical Big Data to Knowledge Training Program (B2D2K) brings together researchers at Penn State and the Geisinger Genomic Medicine Institute to accelerate advances in the biomedical and life sciences.
Disease-associated genes routinely missed in some genetic studies
Disease-associated genes routinely missed in some genetic studies 20 April 2017Whole-exome DNA sequencing -- a technology that saves time and money by sequencing only protein-coding regions and not the entire genome -- may routinely miss detecting some genetic variations associated with disease, according to Penn State researchers who have developed new ways to identify such omissions.
Discovery rewriting the evolutionary history of the nervous system
Discovery rewriting the evolutionary history of the nervous system 08 March 2017Penn State researchers at the Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences uncover a long-standing, fundamental error in the story of the nervous system’s evolution.
Gates Foundation grant boosts malaria research program: Supplemental $4.7 million will aid drug development to accelerate malaria eradication
Gates Foundation grant boosts malaria research program: Supplemental $4.7 million will aid drug development to accelerate malaria eradication 03 March 2017An international team, including researchers at Penn State, have received a three-year, $4.7 million supplemental grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to advance their development of improved therapies for malaria eradication.
Grant to help pave a big data highway to explore genome, enhance health
15 February 2017A $6.1 million, five-year grant from the National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases at the National Institutes of Health may help researchers leverage massive amounts of genomic data to develop medical treatments and pharmaceuticals, according to an international team of researchers.
How to make a motor neuron: Mechanisms underlying direct programming of stem cells could eventually lead to cell-replacement therapies
How to make a motor neuron: Mechanisms underlying direct programming of stem cells could eventually lead to cell-replacement therapies 09 December 2016A team of scientists has uncovered details of the cellular mechanisms that control the direct programming of stem cells into motor neurons. The scientists analyzed changes that occur in the cells over the course of the reprogramming process. They discovered a dynamic, multi-step process in which multiple independent changes eventually converge to change the stem cells into motor neurons.

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