Complex Insight ...
Follow
Find tag "LifeSciences"
7.8K views | +0 today
Complex Insight  - Understanding our world
Latest news on complex systems in life sciences, engineering, education and government
Curated by ComplexInsight
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Breakthrough: Scientists have built a fully-functional mouse heart

Breakthrough: Scientists have built a fully-functional mouse heart | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
In a major scientific first, a team of developmental biologists has built a functional mouse heart from human tissues. The results herald a future where specific patches of heart muscle – or even the whole organ – could be grown for transplantation.
ComplexInsight's insight:

The next step is to see if this approach can be used to create a biomechanically viable tissue - but the implications and promise of this research are astounding. Article from IOS9 and the paper in Nature Communications are well worth reading.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Bird Flu: H7N9 Infection Risk Mapped

Bird Flu: H7N9 Infection Risk Mapped | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

There have been 131 cases of infection confirmed cases of H7N9 in mainland China with 39  deaths. A lack of information about the virus and its mode of transmission  led to public concerns that H7N9 could be a pandemic waiting to happen.A map of avian influenza (H7N9) risk is now available. The map is comprised of bird migration patterns, and adding in estimations of poultry production and consumption, which are used to infer future risk and to advise on ways to prevent infection.

ComplexInsight's insight:

Professor Jiming Liu who led the study explained, "By basing our model on wild bird migration and distribution of potentially infected poultry we are able to produce a time line of the estimated risk of human infection with H7N9. The preliminary results of our study made a prediction of bird flu risk which could explain the pattern of the most recent cases. By extending the model we will be able to predict future infection risks across central and western China, which will aid in surveillance and control of H7N9 infections. Since the effect of poultry-to-poultry infection is not really understood it may become necessary to regulate the activity of poultry markets. To learn more click on the image or title.

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Changing gut bacteria through diet affects brain function, UCLA study shows

Changing gut bacteria through diet affects brain function, UCLA study shows | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

UCLA researchers now have the first evidence that bacteria ingested in food can affect brain function in humans. In an early proof-of-concept study of healthy women, they found that women who regularly consumed beneficial bacteria known as probiotics through yogurt showed altered brain function, both while in a resting state and in response to an emotion-recognition task.

ComplexInsight's insight:

Gut instinct and trust your gut are expressions we use often - researchers at UCLA have now shown there is more to it that simply vernacular expression. Understanding the role of bacteria and human health ecology is becoming far more important to human health than our initial approach of bombing them with anti-biotics first suggested. The new study from UCLA has implications for use of anti-biotics with neonatal care, diet and development and potentially areas such as depression. Much more research following these initial findings will be needed but we are only just starting to discover just how complex we actually are.

more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by ComplexInsight from SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute
Scoop.it!

A primer to ‘bio-objects’: new challenges at the interface of science, technology and society

A primer to ‘bio-objects’: new challenges at the interface of science, technology and society | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Biotechnological and life science innovations do not only lead to immense progress in diverse fields of natural science and technical research and thereby drive economic development, they also fundamentally affect the relationship between nature, technology and society. Taken this seriously, the ethical and societal assessment of emerging biotechnologies as for example synthetic biology is challenged not only to constrain on questions of biosafety and biosecurity but also to face the societal questions within the different fields as an interface problem of science and society. In order to map this vague and stirring field, we propose the concept of bio-objects to explore the reciprocal interaction at the interface of science and society serious as well to have the opportunity to detect possible junctions of societal discontent and unease before their appearance


Via Socrates Logos
ComplexInsight's insight:

Ethical discussions walk the thin line between intellectual noise and useful guidance. Given the potential impact of bio tech I think this is a good step in the direction of discussions for useful guidance. Be interesting seeing how it develops.

more...
Socrates Logos's curator insight, May 4, 2013 2:52 PM

by
Dabrock P, Braun M, Ried J, Sonnewald U.

"Biotechnological and life science innovations do not only lead to immense progress in diverse fields of natural science and technical research and thereby drive economic development, they also fundamentally affect the relationship between nature, technology and society. Taken this seriously, the ethical and societal assessment of emerging biotechnologies as for example synthetic biology is challenged not only to constrain on questions of biosafety and biosecurity but also to face the societal questions within the different fields as an interface problem of science and society. In order to map this vague and stirring field, we propose the concept of bio-objects to explore the reciprocal interaction at the interface of science and society serious as well to have the opportunity to detect possible junctions of societal discontent and unease before their appearance."

http://bit.ly/17Eor97

Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Will 'big data' prevent disease?

Will 'big data' prevent disease? | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
How the blistering pace of technological change could have a profound impact on healthcare.
ComplexInsight's insight:

The combination of sensors and automated tests in areas of genetics and proteomics enable collection of largescale comprehensive health data for the first time. That data will generate insights into human biology, our bacterial biome and how our health systems work. Advances in large scale data processing, correlation and machine learning will help over the next decade to  radically change our understanding of human biology. As data is collected and in silico experimentation mapped to invitrio understanding data will change our  healthcare systems over the next 30 years.  This BBC article gives a good insight into how and why this is starting to happen now.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

CLARITY gives a clear view of the brain

CLARITY gives a clear view of the brain | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
Mo Costandi: A simple new method makes biological tissues transparent, so that they can be examined without having to be cut into slices
ComplexInsight's insight:

If you have ever had to try to make sense of a tissue sectioning slice then you may find this incredible. Nature video on guardian site is very much worth watching. For technical reference see Chung, K., et al. (2013). Structural and molecular interrogation of intact biological systems. Nature, doi:10.1038/nature12107

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics

SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics is an academic, non-profit foundation established in 1998.
ComplexInsight's insight:

Swiss Institute fo Bioinformatics celebrates its 15th birthday. SIB is an important research organisation in switzerland and internationally, offering several important databases (e.g. SwissProt) and software tools used by researchers worldwide. Congrats to everyone involved.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

'Catastrophic Threat': UK Government Calls Antibiotic Resistance a 'Ticking Time Bomb' | Wired Science | Wired.com

'Catastrophic Threat': UK Government Calls Antibiotic Resistance a 'Ticking Time Bomb' | Wired Science | Wired.com | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
On the heels of the director of the US Centers for Disease Control declaring emerging antibiotic resistance a "nightmare," the UK's Chief Medical Officer released a report in which she calls resistance a "catastrophic threat" that poses a national...
ComplexInsight's insight:

Wired has a good summary article on the U.K.’s Chief Medical Officer report on microbial resistance in which she calls resistance a “catastrophic threat” which poses a national security risk as serious as terrorism. In an interview published overnight, she warns that unless resistance is curbed, “We will find ourselves in a health system not dissimilar to the early 19th century” in which organ transplants, cancer chemotherapy, joint replacements and even minor surgeries become life-threatening.  Click on the image or title to get the Wired article summarizing the report or read the report in full: http://bit.ly/XCKdXQ ;

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Mummy scans reveal heart disease plagued our ancestors BEFORE the emergence of junk food and cigarettes

Mummy scans reveal heart disease plagued our ancestors BEFORE the emergence of junk food and cigarettes | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
Researchers say their findings suggest heart disease may be more a natural part of ageing rather than being directly tied to modern vices.
ComplexInsight's insight:

While modern lifestyles and diet certainly excerbate problems of heart disease - these findings indicate that we still need a fuller system level  understsnding of heart disease and the cellular dynamic processes involved.

more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by ComplexInsight from Information, Complexity, Computation
Scoop.it!

Darwin’s extra sense: How mathematics is revolutionizing biology | Santa Fe Institute

Darwin’s extra sense: How mathematics is revolutionizing biology | Santa Fe Institute | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Via Eugene Ch'ng
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

'We Have a Limited Window of Opportunity': CDC Warns of Resistance 'Nightmare' | Wired Science | Wired.com

'We Have a Limited Window of Opportunity': CDC Warns of Resistance 'Nightmare' | Wired Science | Wired.com | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
It's not normal for a top federal health official to deploy a word such as "nightmare," or warn: "We have a very serious problem, and we need to sound an alarm." But on Tuesday, the director the CDC said both during a press conference about the...
ComplexInsight's insight:

Public reaction to news of antibiotic resistance seems to follow a predictable pattern: Instant alarm, followed almost immediately by apathy as the daily routine re-inserts itself. It will be interesting seeing how these announcements are covered and discussed and wether or not consideration of alternate mechanisms, and understanding of adaptation, evolution and bacterial communication enter the discussions more widely. Click on the title or the image to learn more..

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Bad sleep 'dramatically' alters body

Bad sleep 'dramatically' alters body | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
A run of poor sleep can have a dramatic effect on the internal workings of the human body, say UK researchers.
ComplexInsight's insight:

Good article on BBC health:Researchers at the University of Surrey analysed the blood of 26 people after they had had plenty of sleep, up to 10 hours each night for a week, and compared the results with samples after a week of fewer than six hours a night. More than 700 genes were altered by the sleep shift. Each contains the instructions for building a protein, so those that became more active produced more proteins - changing body chemistry in response to reduced sleep. These results help indicate the role of sleep in regulating body chemistry and how regular sleep is important to maintain body functions such as replenishing and replacing cells. 

more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by ComplexInsight from Amazing Science
Scoop.it!

Laser spotlight reveals machine 'climbing' DNA

Laser spotlight reveals machine 'climbing' DNA | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

New imaging technology has revealed how the molecular machines that remodel genetic material inside cells 'grab onto' DNA like a rock climber looking for a handhold.

 

The experiments, reported in this week's Science, use laser light to generate very bright patches close to single cells. When coupled with fluorescent tags this 'spotlight' makes it possible to image the inner workings of cells fast enough to see how the molecular machines inside change size, shape, and composition in the presence of DNA.

 

The Oxford team built their own light microscopy technology for the study, which is a collaboration between the research groups of Mark Leake in Oxford University's Department of Physics and David Sherratt in Oxford University's Department of Biochemistry.

 

The molecular machines in question are called Structural Maintenance of Chromosome (SMC) complexes: they remodel the genetic material inside every living cell and work along similar principles to a large family of molecules that act as very small motors performing functions as diverse as trafficking vital material inside cells to allowing muscles to contract.

 

The researchers studied a particular SMC, MukBEF (which is made from several different protein molecules), inside the bacterium E.coli. David Sheratt and his team found a way to fuse 'fluorescent proteins' directly to the DNA coding for MukBEF, effectively creating a single dye tag for each component of these machines.

 

Up until now conventional techniques of biological physics or biochemistry have not been sufficiently fast or precise to monitor such tiny machines inside living cells at the level of single molecules.

 

'Each machine functions in much the same way as rock-climber clinging to a cliff face,' says Mark Leake of Oxford University’s Department of Physics, 'it has one end anchored to a portion of cellular DNA while the other end opens and closes randomly by using chemical energy stored in a ubiquitous bio-molecule called adenosine triphosphate, or 'ATP': the universal molecular fuel for all living cells.

 

'This opening and closing action of the machine is essentially a process of mechanical 'grabbing', in which it attempts to seize more free DNA, like the rock-climber searching for a new handhold.'

 

It is hoped that pioneering biophysics experiments such as this will give fresh insights into the complex processes which are vital to life, and pave the way for a whole new approach to biomedical research at the very tiny length scale for understanding the causes of many diseases in humans, and how to devise new strategies to combat them. 


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
ComplexInsight's insight:

its turtles all the way down... as we obtain more and more data and insight into cellular molecular mechanisms  their organisation, interactions, spatial and temporal dynamics become increasingly mechanistic with multiscale emergent propertiesarising from local interactions. This pioneering biophysics approach will likely generate a lot more insights into molecular mechanisms as it gets increasingly adopted for other experiments.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

The Elusive H7N9 Virus: Chinese Researchers Predict Future Pandemic

Since February 2013, China experienced an outbreak of the novel H7N9 avian flu, causing 131 cases of infection, and a death toll of 39. his particular H7N9 strain is considered to be one of the most worrisome pathogens since the H5N1 pandemic in 1997; a reputation based on the virus’ ability to spread easily across species and to infect humans

ComplexInsight's insight:

With any emergent strain of flu - there is always concern. H7N9 is making headlines because unlike the H5N1 breakout in 1997, where birds died from infection and dead birds indicated presense of H5N1, H7N9 does not appear to harm the host but can infect humans. H7N9 has been shown to infect the upper respiratory tract of pigs and ferrets follow contact with infected birds. This las led to the conclusion so far that human cases exist as a result of direct contact with infected birds. What is unclear at this point if H7N9 (or some future evolution of it) will efficiently transfer from human to human. Until this is demonstrated talk of potential future pandemic needs to be carefully measured.  Scientists are now examining how the immmune systems of ducks respond to avian influenza might point the way to new antiviral drugs against H5N1, H7N9, and other avian flu outbreaks in humans. 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Data visualisation aims to change view of global health

Data visualisation aims to change view of global health | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
By creating a new and innovative way to look at massive amounts of patient data, one man hopes he can change the way public health crises are managed.
ComplexInsight's insight:

By creating new and innovative visual displays out of oceans of data, Christopher Murray hopes his tool can change this situation for the better. Called GBD Compare, users can rapidly determine which diseases are most harmful to children in Africa, or view how the developing and developed worlds compare in terms of heart disease, all with a few clicks of a computer mouse. The data viz tool processes data is implemented using D3.js and uses data  from the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) report, which compiles statistics, charts and graphs on causes of death and disease. “The thing that’s really neat about the visualisations is they allow people to see the problem in context – in the context of all the other problems, how it’s changing over time, how it compares to other countries,” says Murray, director of the Institute for Health Metrics Evaluation (IMHE), based in Seattle. GBD is an important project and the new visualization tools are effective and easy to use. Click on the image or title to learn more.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

The Way We Think about Cancer Must Evolve | Wired Science | Wired.com

The Way We Think about Cancer Must Evolve | Wired Science | Wired.com | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
Illustration: Alexey Malina Right now, as you read these words, your life is in danger. Somewhere within the vast self-contained micro-universe known a
ComplexInsight's insight:

Interesting article  on how to consider cancer as a by product of cellular activity. Echoes - Danny HIllis's contention that rather thank think of Cancer as a single disease - its better to think of it as a process prodution error that occurs as part of cellular biology.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Researchers identify key cellular organelle involved in gene silencing

Researchers identify key cellular organelle involved in gene silencing | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Present in almost in every cell, microRNAs are known to target tens to hundreds of genes each and to be able to repress, or "silence," their expression. What is less well understood is how exactly miRNAs repress target gene expression. Now a team of scientists led by geneticists at the University of California, Riverside has conducted a study on plants (Arabidopsis) that shows that the site of action of the repression of target gene expression occurs on the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), a cellular organelle that is an interconnected network of membranes—essentially, flattened sacs and branching tubules—that extends like a flat balloon throughout the cytoplasm in plant and animal cells

ComplexInsight's insight:

I think this is fundamentally important. As a programmer - microRNA reminds me of microcode running on multiple parallel processes . With this work showing that ER membranes are essential for microRNA activity. The last line of the article nails it: "Our work shows that an integral membrane protein, AMP1, is required for the miRNA-mediated target gene repression to be successful. As AMP1 has counterparts in animals, our findings in plants could have broader implications." Full paper in Cell 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Scientists produce best image yet of atoms moving in real time

Scientists produce best image yet of atoms moving in real time | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
Call it the ultimate nature documentary. Scientists have recorded atomic motions in real time, offering a glimpse into the very essence of chemistry and biology at the atomic level.
ComplexInsight's insight:

Mapping molecular motions -- the "magic" of chemistry revealed. Despite the enormous number of possible arrangements of atoms during a structural transition, such as occurs with changes in charge distribution or chemical processes, the interconversion from one structure to another reduces to a few key types of motions. This enormous reduction in dimensionality is what makes chemical concepts transferable from one molecule to another and has enabled chemists to synthesize nearly any molecule desired, for new drugs to infusing new material properties. This is a still image from a movie that gives a direct atomic level view of this enormous reduction in complexity. The specific trajectories along three different coordinates, as highlighted in the movie, are shown as projections (right view) on a cube. The key atomic motions can be mapped on to three highly simplified coordinates -- the magic of chemistry in its full atomic splendor. (Credit: Lai Chung Liu, University of Toronto)

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

HIV - learning from an evolutionary arms race.

HIV - learning from an evolutionary arms race. | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
ComplexInsight's insight:

In an awesome peice of detective work mapping out the evolutionary arms race between virus and immune reponse was published in the journal nature. The research team's study is based on a patient in Africa who had a rapid diagnosis after being infected with the virus.By analyzing immune response and HIV evolution the team  were eventually able to produce an antibody named CH103 that could neutralise 55% of HIV samples tested. However the anitbody was not produced in one easy step. Rather it was the product of the war of the immune system and HIV trying to out-evolve each other in a a typical arms rage that culminated in the production of CH103.  This mapping may help in designing fututer treatments and certainly contributes a lot to understanding the HIV immune system relationships. Click on the image or title to learn more.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

ScienceDirect.com - Microbes and Infection - Characterizing the Intracellular Distribution of Metabolites in Intact Chlamydia-Infected Cells by Raman and Two-Photon Microscopy

ScienceDirect.com - Microbes and Infection - Characterizing the Intracellular Distribution of Metabolites in Intact Chlamydia-Infected Cells by Raman and Two-Photon Microscopy | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
Characterizing Intracellular Distribution of Metabolites in Chlamydia-Infected Cells by Raman & Two-Photon Microscopy http://t.co/gZJojjSsnE
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Tooth replacement in prospect after scientists grow teeth from mouse cells

Tooth replacement in prospect after scientists grow teeth from mouse cells | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
Researchers say hybrid of human gum cells and mouse stem cells raises possibility of growing new teeth on patient's jaw
ComplexInsight's insight:

Professor Paul Sharpe, who led the research at King's College London's dental institute, said: "Epithelial cells derived from adult human gum tissue are capable of responding to tooth-inducing signals from embryonic tooth mesenchyme in an appropriate way to contribute to tooth crown and root formation and give rise to relevant differentiated cell types, following in-vitro culture."These easily accessible epithelial cells are thus a realistic source for consideration in human biotooth formation. The next major challenge is to identify a way to culture adult human mesenchymal cells to be tooth-inducing, as at the moment we can only make embryonic mesenchymal cells do this." Previous research has shown that embryonic teeth are capable of developing normally in the adult mouth. "What is required is the identification of adult sources of human epithelial and mesenchymal cells that can be obtained in sufficient numbers to make biotooth formation a viable alternative to dental implants," said Sharpe.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Macrodomain-containing proteins are new mono-ADP-ribosylhydrolases : Nature Structural & Molecular Biology : Nature Publishing Group

Macrodomain-containing proteins are new mono-ADP-ribosylhydrolases : Nature Structural & Molecular Biology : Nature Publishing Group | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
ADP-ribosylation is an important post-translational protein modification, yet enzymes capable of removing the protein-proximal ADP-ribose were unknown.
ComplexInsight's insight:

Protein activity is strictly regulated. Incorrect or poor protein regulation can lead to uncontrolled growth and thus cancer or chronic inflammation. Members of the Institute of Veterinary Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the University of Zurich have identified enzymes that can regulate the activity of medically important proteins. Their discovery enables these proteins to be manipulated very selectively, opening up new treatment methods for inflammations and cancer. The work was published online on March 10, 2013 in Nature Structural & Molecular Biology. A related article was also published online at the same time in the same journal. For a healthy organism, it is crucial for proteins to be active or inactive at the right time. The corresponding regulation is often based on a chemical modification of the protein structure: Enzymes attach small molecules to particular sites on a protein or remove them, thereby activating or deactivating the protein. Identification of the enzymes and related mechanisms opens up the possiblity for new related treatments in related processes. Click on the iage or title to learn more.

more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by ComplexInsight from Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca
Scoop.it!

Factors driving hantavirus emergence in Europe

Factors driving hantavirus emergence in Europe | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Hantaviruses cause hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS) in Eurasia. In Europe both the amplitude and the magnitude of outbreaks of HFRS have increased. The mechanisms that drive the incidences are complex and multi-factorial and only partially due to increased awareness and improved diagnostic tools. Risk determinants include reservoir ecology, virus ecology and anthropogenic factors. The dogma of one specific rodent species as primordial reservoir for a specific hantavirus is increasingly challenged. New hantaviruses have been discovered in shrews, moles and bats and increasing evidence points at host-switching events and co-circulation in multiple, sympatric reservoir species, challenging the strict rodent–virus co-evolution theory. Changing landscape attributes and climatic parameters determine fluctuations in hantavirus epidemiology, for instance through increased food availability, prolonged virus survival and decreased biodiversity.

 


Via Ed Rybicki, Chris Upton + helpers
more...
Ed Rybicki's curator insight, March 6, 2013 9:58 PM

There WILL be more of this: and viruses that were curiosities of teh developing world, will suddenly get attention from the more monied countries.  And hopefully, vaccines too.

Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Thriving cancer's 'chaos' explained

Thriving cancer's 'chaos' explained | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
The way cancer cells can make a completely chaotic mess of their genetic code in order to thrive has been explained by UK researchers.
ComplexInsight's insight:

Excellent article on BBC Science regarding diversity of cancer DNA in a tumour and research at the Cancer Research UK London Research Institute and the University College London. This has been a major problem in finding effective approaches to treating cancers. Prof Swanton told the BBC: "It is like constructing a building without enough bricks or cement for the foundations.

"However, if you can provide the building blocks of DNA you can reduce the replication stress to limit the diversity in tumours, which could be therapeutic."

He admitted that it "just seems wrong" that providing the fuel for a cancer to grow could be therapeutic.However, he said this proved that replication stress was the problem and that new tools could be developed to tackle it.

Future studies will investigate whether the same stress causes diversity in other types of tumour.

more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by ComplexInsight from SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute
Scoop.it!

Stanford scientists fit light-emitting bioprobe in a single cell

Stanford scientists fit light-emitting bioprobe in a single cell | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Via Socrates Logos
more...
Socrates Logos's curator insight, February 20, 2013 9:43 AM

BY ANDREW MYERS

"Stanford researchers are the first to demonstrate that sophisticated light resonators can be inserted inside living cells without damage to the cell. The development marks a new age in which tiny lasers and light-emitting diodes yield new avenues in the study of living cells.If engineers at Stanford have their way, biological research may soon be transformed by a new class of light-emitting probes small enough to be injected into individual cells without harm to the host.

 Welcome to biophotonics, a discipline at the confluence of engineering, biology and medicine in which light-based devices – lasers and light-emitting diodes (LEDs) – are opening up new avenues in the study and influence of living cells. The team described their probe in a paper published online Feb. 13 by the journal Nano Letters. It is the first study to demonstrate that tiny, sophisticated devices known as light resonators can be inserted inside cells without damaging the cell. Even with a resonator embedded inside, a cell is able to function, migrate and reproduce as normal."



http://stanford.io/13gA8P8