Complex Insight - Understanding our world
10.8K views | +0 today
Follow
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...
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Glaxo Opens Door to Data on Its Research

Glaxo Opens Door to Data on Its Research | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

The drug company GlaxoSmithKline hopes that making its research available to scientists will lead to safer, more effective drugs. Whether more disclosure might lead to safer, more effective drugs remains to be seen. GlaxoSmithKline, a British drug concern, will open its clinical trial data to other researchers once a drug has completed the approval process or been abandoned. Glaxo is taking the step after experimenting with disclosure for treatments for tropical diseases like malaria and finding those efforts successful, according to company officials. In addition, the company plans to release information about 200 of its experimental drug compounds that have shown signs of fighting tuberculosis. Learn more by clicking on the image or the title.

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

Modelling of bacteria sheds light on drug-resistance | School of Physics and Astronomy

Modelling of bacteria sheds light on drug-resistance | School of Physics and Astronomy | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

The emergence of disease-causing bacteria which are resistant to known antibiotics is one of the most important current global health challenges. Drug-resistant "superbugs" kill thousands of people every year. This is a growing problem, because new antibiotics are not being discovered fast enough to keep up with the rate of evolution of resistance. Using a simple theoretical model of a bacterial population which expands to colonize a new territory, Philip Greulich, Bartlomiej Waclaw and Rosalind Allen  of the Universiy of Edinburgh show that a non-uniform concentration of antibiotic can greatly speed up the evolution of resistance, compared to the case where the drug is evenly distributed. Non-uniform drug distributions are expected to be very common: for example, drugs in our body accumulate to different levels in different organs. Importantly, the speedup in evolution of resistance that is predicted by the model depends on the sequence of genetic mutations by which the bacteria become drug resistant. It only happens if all the mutations along the pathway increase the drug resistance. Unfortunately, this seems to be the case for many commonly-used antibiotics. This research shows that simple, statistical physics models can provide important insights into biological problems. The theory developed by the Edinburgh researchers may also be relevant to the evolution of cancer cells resistant to chemotherapeutic drugs, suggesting that the highly non-uniform microenvironments found inside tumours may present a major obstacle to the successful treatment of the tumour before drug resistance emerges.

more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by ComplexInsight from Origin of Life: Emergence, Self-organization and Evolution
Scoop.it!

Biostructural theory of the living systems

Biostructural theory of the living systems | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

The biostrucutral hypothesis is a controversial theory first developed by Eugen Macovschi in 1958. Murariua and Drochioiub reappraise this theory in their latest work published on Biosystems.The biostructural theory is based on a supramolecular description of biological systems, where molecules and matter acquire distinctive properties by means of reciprocal interactions when embedded in highly four-dimensional structured systems.

 

Source:

Manuela Murariua and Gabi Drochioiub,

Biostructural theory of the living systems.

Biosystems, Volume 109, Issue 2, August 2012, Pages 126–132


Via Davide De Lucrezia
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

AstraZeneca builds virtual neuroscience drug unit byte by byte

AstraZeneca builds virtual neuroscience drug unit byte by byte | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Good article over at - FierceBiotechIT. Call it the bionic drug R&D group. Without scads of scientists on hand, AstraZeneca's virtual neuroscience unit relies heavily on information technologies to automate some of the heavy lifting of managing a pipeline of drugs for neurological and psychiatric disorders. In an interview with FierceBiotech IT, AZ research information head John Reynders described the tech platforms supporting the research group. Click on the image or title to learn more.

 

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

Microbial Cooperative Warfare

Cooperation among individuals of the same population directed against competing populations (cooperative warfare) is widespread in animals and plants. What happens in the microbial world is much less understood. Microbes can interact with one another through chemical signals, but little is known about the nature of their interactions, particularly outside the laboratory. On page 1228 of this issue, Cordero et al. (1) present a detailed analysis of ecological interaction networks, population structures, and genetic relatedness of microbes in the wild. They suggest that cooperative warfare is common in the microbial world.

 

Microbial Cooperative Warfare
Hélène Morlon

Science 7 September 2012:
Vol. 337 no. 6099 pp. 1184-1185
http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.1227512


Via Complexity Digest
more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by ComplexInsight from Papers
Scoop.it!

The automatic chemist

The automatic chemist | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Bartosz Grzybowski of Northwestern University in Illinois, US – who has already established himself as one of our most inventive chemists – has unveiled a ‘chemo-informatic’ scheme, Chematica, that can stake a reasonable claim to being paradigm-changing. Grzybowski and his colleagues have spent years assembling the transformations that link chemical species into a vast network that codifies and organises the known pathways through chemical space. The nodes of the network – molecules, elements and chemical reactions – are linked together by connecting reactants to products via the nexus of a known reaction. The full network contains around 7 million compound nodes and about the same number of reaction nodes. Grzybowski calls it a ‘collective chemical brain’.

 

The automatic chemist
Philip Ball

Chemistry World 22 August 2012

http://www.rsc.org/chemistryworld/2012/08/automatic-chemist


Via Complexity Digest
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

New Device Can Measure the Mass of a Single Molecule

New Device Can Measure the Mass of a Single Molecule | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Up until now, scientists could only calculate the mass of large groups of molecules, by ionizing them (giving them an electric charge) and then seeing how strongly they interacted with an electromagnetic field, a technique known as mass spectrometry. They had no way, however, of measuring the mass of a single molecule. This has now changed with Caltech scientists have created an ultra-sensitive device that can weigh an individual molecule for the first time.  By weighing each molecule, they were able to determine exactly which kind of IgM it was, hinting at potential future medical applications. The initial demonstration weighed a immunoglobulin M, or IgM molecule hinting at future medical applications. A kind of cancer known as Waldenström macroglobulinemia, for instance, is reflected by a particular ratio of IgM molecules in a patient’s blood, so future instruments building on this principle could monitor blood to detect antibody imbalances indicative of cancer. Click on the image or title to learn more.

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

New insights to the function of molecular chaperones

New insights to the function of molecular chaperones | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Heidelberg molecular biologists have gained new insights into the function of so-called molecular chaperones in protein synthesis. The team headed by Dr. Günter Kramer and Prof. Dr. Bernd Bukau of the DKFZ-ZMBH Alliance, a research association between Heidelberg University's Center for Molecular Biology (ZMBH) and the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), was able to demonstrate how a molecular chaperone in bacterial cells can influence the formation of the three-dimensional structure of new proteins (i.e. Protein folding).

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2012-08-insights-function-molecular-chaperones.html or click on the image or the title to learn more.

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

Fluorescent molecules 'tag' DNA and monitor looping process

In a new study, UT Dallas researchers outline how they used fluorescent molecules to "tag" DNA and monitor a process called DNA looping, a natural biological mechanism involved in rearranging genetic material in some types of cells. The UT Dallas "tag and track" method not only sheds light on how DNA loops form, but also might be adapted to screen drugs for effectiveness against certain viruses that shuffle genetic material, such as HIV. Until now, scientists primarily had "snapshots" of the initial and final stages of DNA loop formation, with only limited information about what happens during the intermediate steps, Click on title to learn more.

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

Futurity.org – Imaging combo spots infection in 3D

Futurity.org – Imaging combo spots infection in 3D | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Scientists have combined MRI and imaging mass spectrometry to visualize the body’s inflammatory response to a bacterial infection in 3D. The techniques, described in Cell Host & Microbe, offer opportunities for discovering proteins not previously implicated in the inflammatory response. Eric Skaar, chair in pathology at Vanderbilt University and his team were interested in imaging infection in three dimensions—in the whole animal—while also being able to identify the proteins that are produced at sites of infection.Click on the image or title to learn more.

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

Danny Hillis talks Proteomics & Personalized Medicine

Danny Hillis talks Proteomics & Personalized Medicine

During his lecture at Singularity University, Hillis explained how scientific medicine is beginning to revert back to more ancient, ayurvedic lessons about healthcare. The approach is to treat the body as a system, where balance is the foundation for good health and disease and sickness are the externalities of imbalance. With advancements in proteomics and computing we can begin creating models of what a healthy bodily state looks like. In the same way we might use environmental models to analyze the global climate, we can isolate specific variables that can inform the larger picture. As the data piles up, preventative medicine will become a quantitative endeavour.  Danny HIllis is always worth listening too. Click on the image or headline for more.


Via Gerd Moe-Behrens
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Chemotherapy 'undermines itself'

Chemotherapy 'undermines itself' | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

BBC article summarising report in Nature Medicine: Chemotherapy can undermine itself by causing a rogue response in healthy cells, which could explain why people become resistant, a study suggests. Click on image or title to learn more..

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

One Million Genomic Datasets | The Scientist

One Million Genomic Datasets | The Scientist | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Publicly accessible databases now store nearly 1 million gene-expression datasets, giving researchers a robust resource for discovery.


Via Gerd Moe-Behrens
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

Taking Mathematics to Heart

Taking Mathematics to Heart | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Mathematics might seem like an abstract discipline, remote from real-world applications, but its equations can significantly help understand and simulate the functioning of nature. Professor Alfio Quarteroni of the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL, Switzerland) is leading the Mathcard project in developing mathematical models of the blood flow in our cardiovascular system. Click on the image or the title to learn more.

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

Evolutionary History and Attenuation of Myxoma Virus on Two Continents

Evolutionary History and Attenuation of Myxoma Virus on Two Continents | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

The attenuation of myxoma virus (MYXV) following its introduction as a biological control into the European rabbit populations of Australia and Europe is the canonical study of the evolution of virulence. However, the evolutionary genetics of this profound change in host-pathogen relationship is unknown.  This paper (available on PLOS in fulll)  provide, for the first time, key details on the genome-wide changes that underpin this landmark example of pathogen emergence and virulence evolution. By sequencing and comparing MYXV genomes, including the original strains released in the 1950s, the authors show that (i) MYXV evolved rapidly in both Australia and Europe, producing one of the highest rates of evolutionary change ever recorded for a DNA virus, (ii) that changes in virulence were caused by mutations in multiple genes, often involving losses of gene function due to insertions and deletions, and that (iii) strains of the same virulence were defined by different mutations, such that both attenuated and virulent MYXV strains are produced by a variety genetic pathways, and generating convergent evolution for phenotype but not genotype. IF you are interestedin seeing evolution at work - this is a great paper on viral evolution, worth reading. Click on the image or the title to learn more.


Via Chris Upton + helpers
more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by ComplexInsight from Viruses and Bioinformatics from Virology.uvic.ca
Scoop.it!

Lethal Mutagenesis of Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus Involves Shifts in Sequence Space

Lethal Mutagenesis of Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus Involves Shifts in Sequence Space | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Lethal mutagenesis or virus transition into error catastrophe is an antiviral strategy that aims at extinguishing a virus by increasing the viral mutation rates during replication. The molecular basis of lethal mutagenesis is largely unknown. Previous studies showed that a critical substitution in the foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) polymerase was sufficient to allow the virus to escape extinction through modulation of the transition types induced by the purine nucleoside analogue ribavirin. This substitution was not detected in mutant spectra of FMDV populations that had not replicated in the presence of ribavirin, using standard molecular cloning and nucleotide sequencing. Here we selectively amplify and analyze low-melting-temperature cDNA duplexes copied from FMDV genome populations passaged in the absence or presence of ribovirin Hypermutated genomes with high frequencies of A and U were present in both ribavirin -treated and untreated populations, but the major effect of ribavirin mutagenesis was to accelerate the occurrence of AU-rich mutant clouds during the early replication rounds of the virus. Click on the image or title to learn more.


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

X-ray Microscope: Seeing Cells in 3-D | KQED QUEST

X-ray Microscope: Seeing Cells in 3-D | KQED QUEST | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

At the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, scientists are using a cutting-edge microscope, the first of its kind in the world, to image whole cells in 3-D with the penetrating power of x-rays.


Via Gerd Moe-Behrens
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

HPC allows UI cancer researchers to simulate tumor development | High Performance Computing

HPC allows UI cancer researchers to simulate tumor development | High Performance Computing | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Uterine cancer is the fourth most common cancer among women, and the most common gynecological cancer. Researchers at the University of Iowa are using high-performance computing (HPC) to investigate how a tumor develops in normal uterine epithelium.

The majority of cancer research presumes that every cell in a tumor is driven by the same genetic alterations and follows same pathway to malignancy. Dr. Donghai Dai, associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology in the Carver College of Medicine, doesn’t think that’s the case. He believes the billions of cells that make up a tumor may each have their unique mutations that cause them to deviate from normal cell behavior. So, Dai and his team are taking a single-cell approach to studying the development of tumors. With complex mathematical models and the Helium computing cluster, administered by Information Technology Services, they can run simulations on millions of representative uterine cells each day. The researchers determine the fate of the cells through incorporation of the combined effect of numerous random mutations and varying hormonal stimulations. Click on the image or title to learn more.

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

Genomics: ENCODE explained : Nature : Nature Publishing Group

Genomics: ENCODE explained : Nature : Nature Publishing Group | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
The Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE) project dishes up a hearty banquet of data that illuminate the roles of the functional elements of the human genome.

Via Gerd Moe-Behrens
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by ComplexInsight
Scoop.it!

BSim - Agent based modeling tool for bacterial populations

BSim - Agent based modeling tool for bacterial populations | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

BSim is an agent-based modelling tool designed to allow for the study of bacterial populations. By enabling the description of bacterial behaviours, it attempts to provide an environment in which to investigate how local interactions between individual bacterium leads to the emergence of population level features, such as cooperation and synchronisation. For an good research example of how BSim is used see the paper here:

http://wwffm.org/2012/08/26/bsim-an-agent-based-tool-for-modeling-bacterial-populations-in-systems-and-synthetic-biology/

 

Click on the image or the title for more info.

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

Physiologically Based Pharmacokinetics (PBPK) | Absorption | Formulation | Pharmacodynamics | Drug Drug Interaction | Population PK

Physiologically Based Pharmacokinetics (PBPK) | Absorption | Formulation | Pharmacodynamics | Drug Drug Interaction | Population PK | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

The Pharmaceutical industry continues to adopt simulation technologies for drug discovery and development. This week Simulations Plus, Inc., a provider of simulation and modeling software announced it had signed a collaboration agreement with a major pharmaceutical company to add a transdermal and subcutaneous dosing model within its GastroPlus simulation software program. GastroPlus™ is a mechanistic, physiologically-based simulation program that predicts the absorption, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacodynamics for drugs given through oral, intravenous, ocular or pulmonary routes.The funded collaboration enable Simulations Plus to extend the competitive advantage of GastroPlus without the need for Simulations Plus to fund the development directly.

 

 

 

 

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

Insects Find Crack In Biotech Corn's Armor : NPR

Insects Find Crack In Biotech Corn's Armor : NPR | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Scientists report that a genetically engineered corn crop has failed to kill the corn rootworm — the pest it was designed to stop. This may be the most serious threat to a genetically modified crops in the U.S. Clik on the image ot title to learn more.

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

Programmable single-cell mammalian biocomputers

Synthetic biology has advanced the design of standardized control devices that program cellular functions and metabolic activities in living organisms. Rational interconnection of these synthetic switches resulted in increasingly complex designer networks that execute input-triggered genetic instructions with precision, robustness and computational logic reminiscent of electronic circuits (...) we have designed a set of synthetic transcription–translation control devices that could be rewired in a plug-and-play manner

 

Programmable single-cell mammalian biocomputers

Simon Ausländer, David Ausländer, Marius Müller, Markus Wieland & Martin Fussenegger

Nature 487, 123–127 (05 July 2012) http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature11149


Via Complexity Digest
more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by ComplexInsight from Papers
Scoop.it!

Surprising finding: Tree's leaves genetically different from its roots

Surprising finding: Tree's leaves genetically different from its roots | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Black cottonwood trees (Populus trichocarpa) can clone themselves to produce offspring that are connected to their parents by the same root system. Now, after the first genome-wide analysis of a tree, it turns out that the connected clones have many genetic differences, even between tissues from the top and bottom of a single tree. The variation within a tree is as great as the variation across unrelated trees. Such somatic mutations — those that occur in cells other than sperm or eggs — are familiar to horticulturalists, who have long bred new plant varieties by grafting mutant branches onto ‘normal’ stocks. But until now, no one has catalogued the total number of somatic mutations in an individual plant. The findings have parallels to cancer studies, which have recently shown that separate parts of the same tumor can evolve independently and build up distinct genetic mutations, meaning that single biopsies give only a narrow view of the tumor’s diversity.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald, Complexity Digest
more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by ComplexInsight from SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute
Scoop.it!

Dawn of Virtual Cell Biology

You Tube Video

"A journal club and author interview about the recent paper "A Whole-Cell Computational Model Predicts Phenotype from Genotype", Karr et al., 2012. Stephen Larson presents a 45 minute overview of the paper and authors Jonathan Karr and Jayodita Sanghvi answer questions and clarify the paper. Organized by the members of OpenWorm.org"

The slide presentation is here:

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1UJl1XMeWkgI-qjtj6AkjsoUCpRQMoNWOEDShBLgmM54/edit

The comment stream here:

https://plus.google.com/u/0/117948341754627144949/posts

http://bit.ly/MpWUx8


Via Gerd Moe-Behrens
more...
No comment yet.