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Blocking Telomerase Kills Cancer Cells but Provokes Resistance, Progression | MD Anderson Cancer Center

Inhibiting telomerase, an enzyme that rescues malignant cells from destruction by extending the protective caps on the ends of chromosomes, kills tumor cells but also triggers resistance pathways that allow cancer to survive and spread, scientists reported.

 

"Telomerase is overexpressed in many advanced cancers, but assessing its potential as a therapeutic target requires us to understand what it does and how it does it," said senior author Ronald DePinho, M.D., president of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

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Reinvent Yourself: The Playboy Interview with Ray Kurzweil

Reinvent Yourself: The Playboy Interview with Ray Kurzweil | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Many think author, inventor and data scientist Ray Kurzweil is a prophet for our digital age. A few say he’s completely nuts. Kurzweil, who heads a team of more than 40 as a director of engineering at Google, believes advances in technology and medicine are pushing us toward what he calls the Singularity, a period of profound cultural and evolutionary change in which computers will outthink the brain and allow people—you, me, the guy with the man-bun ahead of you at Starbucks—to live forever. He dates this development at 2045.
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Surprisingly simple common cold vaccine may defend against many strains

Surprisingly simple common cold vaccine may defend against many strains | Longevity science | Scoop.it
As common as the common cold is, scientists have so far been unable to develop a viable vaccine against it, largely due to the fact that there are over 100 strains of rhinoviruses, the most common cause of the infection. Now, a team at Emory University has used a surprisingly simple technique, mixing multiple types of rhinovirus into one vaccine, and found it stimulated the immune system against all of the included types.

Vaccinating against individual serotypes of rhinovirus is possible, but not very effective since there's very little cross-protection between strains. To combat this, the Emory team simply combined dozens of different serotypes of inactivated rhinovirus into one mixture, and tested the treatment on mice and macaques.
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Cancer cells' stealth mechanism uncovered

Cancer cells' stealth mechanism uncovered | Longevity science | Scoop.it
When a malignant tumor invades the body, immune cells rush to the site to begin to fight it. When that same tumor spreads throughout the body, however, the cancer cells become invisible to our immune systems and can metastasize unencumbered by our natural defenses. Researchers out of the University of British Columbia (UBC) are on to cancer's tricky cloaking mechanism though, and their discovery could lead to new approaches to attacking the disease.

"We discovered a new mechanism that explains how metastatic tumours can outsmart the immune system and we have begun to reverse this process so tumours are revealed to the immune system once again," said Wilfred Jefferies, senior author of a new study in Scientific Reports and a professor of medical genetics and microbiology and immunology at UBC.
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Eric Larson's curator insight, Today, 6:53 AM
Stealth in cancer
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Shape-shifting proteins layered like a cake could set Alzheimer’s in motion

Shape-shifting proteins layered like a cake could set Alzheimer’s in motion | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Scientists have established a rough outline of one way in which Alzheimer's disease takes hold, and bit by bit they are starting to fill in the detail. Key players in this process are what are known as amyloid beta proteins which form in clumps, evolve into plaques and cause irreversible damage to the brain. New research has revealed the crafty maneuver that these peptides use to slip past the cell's defenses whereby they first change shape to form stacks of long, flat sheets, a finding that may offer up new opportunities to intervene in the onset of the disease.
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Genetic Studies Reveal Diversity of Early Human Populations — and Pin Down When We Left Africa

Genetic Studies Reveal Diversity of Early Human Populations — and Pin Down When We Left Africa | Longevity science | Scoop.it
We know that our lineage arose in Africa and quickly spread to the four corners of the globe. But the details are murky. Was there just one population of early humans in Africa at the time? When exactly did we first leave the continent and was there just one exodus? Some scientists believe that all non-Africans today can trace their ancestry back to a single migrant population, while others argue that there were several different waves of migration out of Africa.

Now, three new studies mapping the genetic profiles of more than 200 populations across the world, published in Nature, have started to answer some of these questions.
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Human neurons implanted in mice plug into spinal cord to help heal injury

Human neurons implanted in mice plug into spinal cord to help heal injury | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Treatments for symptoms of spinal cord injuries may be a step closer, as researchers at University of California San Francisco (UCSF) have transplanted human neurons into mice with these injuries, and found that over time they made new connections in the spine, reducing chronic pain and helping the mice regain some bladder control.

Difficulties with walking may seem like the most obvious symptom of spinal cord injury, but according to a 2004 study, bladder control was ranked as the top priority for treatment by almost 20 percent of paraplegics, and 10 percent of quadriplegics. Like chronic pain, loss of bladder control is a symptom of inflammation following spinal injury, which damages inhibitory spinal circuits that use the neurotransmitter, gamma-Aminobutyric acid (GABA). When GABA is lessened, the spine's ability to inhibit pain and control bladder function decreases.
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A thought-controlled robotic exoskeleton for the hand | KurzweilAI

A thought-controlled robotic exoskeleton for the hand | KurzweilAI | Longevity science | Scoop.it
A lightweight exoskeleton that extends the patient’s hand

The problem: existing exoskeletons are heavy, so patients can’t lift their hands, Gassert says, and patients have difficulty feeling objects and exerting the right amount of force. “That’s why we wanted to develop a model that leaves the palm of the hand more or less free, allowing patients to perform daily activities that support not only motor (movement) functions but somatosensory functions as well.”

The initial solution, developed with Professor Jumpei Arata from Kyushu University (Japan), was a mechanism for the finger featuring three overlapping leaf springs. A motor moves the middle spring, which transmits the force to the different segments of the finger through the other two springs. The fingers thus automatically adapt to the shape of the object the patient wants to grasp. But the motors brought the weight of the exoskeleton to 250 grams, which in clinical tests proved too heavy for patients.
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New Smart Tattoos Let You Control Your Phone Using Your Skin

New Smart Tattoos Let You Control Your Phone Using Your Skin | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Created by MIT PhD student Cindy Hsin-Liu Kao in conjunction with Microsoft Research, the Duoskin tattoos transfer onto your skin with water, and they can be customized for both aesthetic and functional purposes. Hsin-Liu Kao presented her paper about the tattoos at the International Symposium on Wearable Computers in Heidelberg, Germany last week.
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Sequencing Reveals Genomic Diversity of the Human Brain | The Scientist Magazine®

Sequencing Reveals Genomic Diversity of the Human Brain | The Scientist Magazine® | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Somatic mosaicism—the variation of the genome between individual cells—is particularly consequential in the brain. Neuroscientists have found that small changes to the genome of even a few neurons can have neurological consequences. In a study published in Nature Neuroscience this week (September 12), scientists set their sights on one source of this variation. Using single-cell sequencing and machine learning algorithms, they have examined the extent of long interspersed element-1 (LINE-1, or L1) retrotransposition in the healthy human brain.

In the 1940s, Barbara McClintock and colleagues discovered transposons, or “jumping genes,” scraps of DNA able to move from one position in the genome to another. By 2005, Fred “Rusty” Gage of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and colleagues identified L1 transposons as a source of genomic mosaicism in human neurons. Now, Gage and his colleagues have shown that L1s don’t just jump around: these mobile elements can also spontaneously trigger the deletion of certain genes.
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These six plant extracts could delay aging | KurzweilAI

These six plant extracts could delay aging | KurzweilAI | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Six previously identified plant extracts can delay aging by affecting different signaling pathways that set the pace of growing old, researchers from Concordia University and Idunn Technologies have found, in a study recently published (open-access) in Oncotarget.

Using yeast — a favored cellular aging model — Vladimir Titorenko, a biology professor and the study’s senior author, and his colleagues monitored how the information flowing through signaling pathways was affected by each of the six aging-delaying plant extracts.
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Genetic matching technique means no rejection for transplanted cells

Genetic matching technique means no rejection for transplanted cells | Longevity science | Scoop.it
In research that could significantly improve the viability of human retinal cell transplant methods and help restore eyesight in patients with diseases such as macular degeneration, a team at Japan's RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology (CDB) has used a genetic matching technique to overcome the problems of rejection and the use of immunosuppressant drugs when transplanting retinal pigment cells derived from the stem cells of one monkey into the eyes of other monkeys.

Whilst a great deal of promise is shown in the reprogramming of adult human cells into stem cells which can then be used to grow into any number of new and different cells, rejection of cells not taken from the original recipient means that immune-suppressing drugs or a lot of expensive, time-consuming cell matching and manipulation techniques are required.
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Using CRISPR to Edit Genes in Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells | The Scientist Magazine®

Using CRISPR to Edit Genes in Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells | The Scientist Magazine® | Longevity science | Scoop.it
The past decade has seen the birth of two incredibly useful biological tools, and now scientists are beginning to marry them. The first is human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). Nobel Prize–winning advances, beginning with mice in 2006 and subsequently in humans, showed that it was possible to revert adult skin cells to pluripotent stem cells, which can in turn be coaxed to become nearly any cell type. These cells are the cell-scale embodiment of a person’s genome, and provide researchers with the ability to create cell types that would be otherwise impossible to cull from the living body. iPSCs offer powerful new ways to model monogenetic and complex human diseases and to tailor cell-based therapies.

The second tool is the CRISPR-Cas9 system, which allows easy and precise editing of any region of the genome.
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Robot gives surgeons steady hand for in-eye surgery

Robot gives surgeons steady hand for in-eye surgery | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Now, for the first time, surgeons at the University of Oxford have used a remote-controlled robot to perform a delicate operation inside the eye with sub-millimeter precision not normally afforded by the human hand.

Keyhole surgery techniques are making procedures less invasive for patients, reducing recovery times and the risk of infection. Needle-thin instruments can enter the body through small incisions or orifices like the ear and allow finely-tuned operations beyond the scope of human ability, like operating on a heart while matching the rhythm of its beating, removing the need to stop the heart completely.
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The Americas declared the first region to eliminate the measles

The Americas declared the first region to eliminate the measles | Longevity science | Scoop.it
As it was with smallpox, polio, rubella and congenital rubella syndrome, the Americas has become the first region in the world to eliminate measles. The announcement was made this week during the 55th Directing Council of the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), crediting mass vaccination over the last few decades. But while no new cases are originating in the region, officials warned that measles can still be brought in from overseas, meaning vaccination efforts need to be maintained to keep the disease under control.
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To get a flatter belly, start by getting enough sleep

To get a flatter belly, start by getting enough sleep | Longevity science | Scoop.it
It’s a pretty universal desire. I’m not talking about the living-forever wish — I mean having a flat belly. Have you ever heard anyone say, “No, actually, I’d like to go with the round, protruding kind.”

No, didn’t think so.

But how do we get there?
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Smart Skin Enables Magnetoreception | The Scientist Magazine®

Smart Skin Enables Magnetoreception | The Scientist Magazine® | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Researchers develop a wearable technology that can detect magnetic fields and translate the signal into a visual display—a first step toward equipping humans with an entirely new sense.
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Roller coasters add some thrills to treating kidney stones

Roller coasters add some thrills to treating kidney stones | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Kidney stones aren't anyone's idea of a good time, but treating them could be more fun than we think. The prescription? A day at Walt Disney World. Researchers from Michigan State University (MSU) have found that roller coasters are an effective way to dislodge kidney stones, with tests on a synthetic model showing a success rate for passing kidney stones of almost 70 percent.
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Profile: Dean Buonomano Studies How the Brain Encodes Time | The Scientist Magazine®

Profile: Dean Buonomano Studies How the Brain Encodes Time | The Scientist Magazine® | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Today, Buonomano’s laboratory at the University of California, Los Angeles, uses computational modeling, in vitro electrophysiology, and human psychophysics experiments to explore how neurons and the brain as a whole perceive and respond to time. Here, Buonomano describes how he performed his first experiments on his little sister, bathed mice with antidandruff shampoo, and hypothesized that timing is so integral to brain function that all of our brain’s circuits keep tabs on the clock.
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Mitochondria: a new therapeutic target in chronic kidney disease

Mitochondria: a new therapeutic target in chronic kidney disease | Longevity science | Scoop.it
in this manuscript, we reviewed the characteristics of the available mitochondria-targeted anti-oxidant compounds that could be employed routinely in our nephrology, internal medicine and renal transplant centers. Nevertheless, large clinical trials are needed to provide more definitive information about their use and to assess their overall efficacy or toxicity.
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Discovery of fat breakdown trigger opens door for new obesity treatments

Discovery of fat breakdown trigger opens door for new obesity treatments | Longevity science | Scoop.it
While it's known that the brain is responsible for instructing our fat stores to break down and release energy as we need it, scientists haven't yet been able to pin down exactly how this process plays out. Leptin, a hormone produced by our fat cells, travels to the brain to regulate appetite, metabolism and energy, but it hasn't been clear what communication was coming back the other way. New research has now uncovered this missing link for the first time, revealing a set of nerves that connect with fat tissue to stimulate the process in a development that could lead to new types of anti-obesity treatments.
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Next-gen surgical dressing designed to stop the clock for battlefield wounds

Next-gen surgical dressing designed to stop the clock for battlefield wounds | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Severely Injured Limb (ACCSIL), which not only covers wounded limbs, but reduces damage and protects exposed tissues for up to 72 hours.

Dressing wounds in the field, especially traumatic blast wounds, is a very serious and difficult business. Aside from stabilizing the patient by minimizing blood loss and fending off shock, the medic has to cover the wound properly. This keeps the exposed tissues moist so they don't deteriorate, as well as keeping out dirt and bacteria that can lead to infection and conditions like gangrene.
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The Most Over-Hyped Technologies in Healthcare - The Medical Futurist

The Most Over-Hyped Technologies in Healthcare - The Medical Futurist | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Take a look at the most overhyped technologies in healthcare and keep in mind the realistic development opportunities in healing.
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World’s first ciliary microrobots could change the way we take medicine

World’s first ciliary microrobots could change the way we take medicine | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Science fiction is fast becoming reality, with scientists in South Korea developing an astonishingly fast-moving remote-controlled microrobot designed to travel through the human bloodstream to deliver treatment directly to the organs that need it.

Developed by the Department of Robotics Engineering at the Daegu Gyeongbuk Institute of Science and Technology (DGIST), the new microrobot is highly maneuverable and moves a least eight times faster than its most recent predecessor, using a propulsion system inspired by the commonly studied ciliated organism, the paramecium.
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Painless light pulses, instead of harsh electric shocks, shown to restore heart rhythms

Painless light pulses, instead of harsh electric shocks, shown to restore heart rhythms | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Current treatments for arrhythmia, a dangerous irregular heartbeat, involve administering an intense burst of electricity from a defibrillator in times of cardiac arrest, but these pulses are painful and potentially harmful. Now, in tests on mice and simulations of the human heart, scientists at Johns Hopkins and the University of Bonn have found that beams of light can restore regular heart function, possibly paving the way to implantable optical defibrillators that provide a gentle and safe alternative to a harsh electric shock.

The research comes from the field of optogenetics, which uses pulses of light to alter electrical activity in cells, thanks to implanted light-sensitive proteins. This field has, in the past, been used to deliver drugs to brain cells, study neurons and modify pain sensitivity. This study builds on previous research from some members of the team from Bonn, who used blue light to trigger arrhythmia in mice to learn about how to treat it.
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Benefit of statins '100 times the harm' - BBC News

Benefit of statins '100 times the harm' - BBC News | Longevity science | Scoop.it
The benefits of the cholesterol-reducing drug statins are underestimated and the harms exaggerated, a major review suggests.

Lead author of the study Rory Collins explains to Today programme presenter Mishal Husain the effectiveness of the drug and why some negative reports may be misleading.
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Here’s How to Convince the Brain That Prosthetic Legs Are Real

Here’s How to Convince the Brain That Prosthetic Legs Are Real | Longevity science | Scoop.it

The carbon fiber legs or “blades” used by lower limb amputee runners have arguably become one of the most iconic symbols of the Paralympic Games. Although different lower-limb sports prostheses are used for running, jumping, and other activities, they share a single common aim: they are designed to help paralympians run faster and jump higher or further than other competitors. Form follows function.
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Whereas modern running blades have a distinctive hook shape, one of the most promising engineering approaches for everyday prostheses is to closely model the biological design of a leg, ankle and foot. This approach is referred to as “biomimicry."

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