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Regenerative medicine scientists ‘print’ replacement tissue | KurzweilAI

Regenerative medicine scientists ‘print’ replacement tissue | KurzweilAI | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Using a sophisticated, custom-designed 3D printer, regenerative medicine scientists at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center have proved that it is feasible to print living tissue structures to replace injured or diseased tissue in patients.

Reporting in Nature Biotechnology, the scientists said they printed ear, bone and muscle structures. When implanted in animals, the structures matured into functional tissue and developed a system of blood vessels. Most importantly, these early results indicate that the structures have the right size, strength and function for use in humans.

“This novel tissue and organ printer is an important advance in our quest to make replacement tissue for patients,” said Anthony Atala, M.D., director of the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine (WFIRM) and senior author on the study. “It can fabricate stable, human-scale tissue of any shape. With further development, this technology could potentially be used to print living tissue and organ structures for surgical implantation.”
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Genome Digest | The Scientist Magazine®

Genome Digest | The Scientist Magazine® | Longevity science | Scoop.it

Recent discoveries in genomics: ticks, bedbugs, seagrass, and peanuts...


Seagrass, Zostera marina, provides the basis for some of the most biodiverse ecosystems on the planet, growing in meadows that offer habitats for marine animals and protect the coastline from erosion. But seagrass is also evolutionarily unique, in that it is the only flowering plant to have transitioned from land to sea. Now its genome, published last month (January 27) in Nature, is starting to reveal how it made the switch.

“They have re-engineered themselves,” study coauthor Jeanine Olsen

Ray and Terry's 's insight:

A fun mini-review of recent genomics

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Preconditioned cells may help heal major bone fractures

Preconditioned cells may help heal major bone fractures | Longevity science | Scoop.it
One way to help larger bone wounds to heal is to implant bone cells at the site of the break, that can help facilitate and speed up the process. Unfortunately there's one big problem with such a treatment – the cells encounter an inhospitable environment when implanted, with damage to the surrounding cells causing an insufficiency of oxygen and nutrients.

It takes significant time for new blood vessels to reach the implanted cells, and with the lack of key resources, the new bone cells begin to produce harmful oxygen radicals, further complicating the situation. These difficult conditions cause as many as 70 percent of implanted cells to die within just days.

Addressing that exact problem, a team of researchers at KU Leuven decided to try and equip the bone cells with the means to better cope with the inhospitable environment.
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Autism-like behavior reversed in laboratory mice

Autism-like behavior reversed in laboratory mice | Longevity science | Scoop.it
MIT scientists have successfully reversed autistic-like behavioral patterns in mice. The study focused on a gene called Shank3, which is missing in 1 percent of individuals suffering from autism, and is believed to be vital for the development of a healthy adult brain.

Autism is a term for a group of disorders that arise from a diverse range of genetic causes that work to prevent the brain from developing normally, often making the simplest of social interactions incredibly difficult. According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), instances of autism have risen 10-fold over the space of 40 years, with roughly 1 in 68 American children currently thought to be on the autistic spectrum.

The new MIT research may lead to gene therapy treatment for some patients that could alleviate certain behavioral defects synonymous with autism.
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Trends in US Mortality, 1969-2013

Trends in US Mortality, 1969-2013 | Longevity science | Scoop.it
According to death certificate data between 1969 and 2013, an overall decreasing trend in age-standardized death rate was observed for all causes combined, heart disease, cancer, stroke, unintentional injuries, and diabetes, although the rate of decrease appears to have slowed for heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. The death rate for COPD increased during this period.
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Genentech Press Release - February 16, 2016

Genentech, a member of the Roche group (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: RHHBY) announced today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Breakthrough Therapy Designation for the investigational medicine ocrelizumab (OCREVUSTM) for the treatment of people with primary progressive multiple sclerosis (PPMS). There are currently no approved treatments for PPMS, a debilitating form of MS characterized by steadily worsening symptoms and typically without distinct relapses or periods of remission.1
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Cancer researchers claim 'extraordinary results' using T-cell therapy

Cancer researchers claim 'extraordinary results' using T-cell therapy | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Scientists are claiming “extraordinary” success with engineering immune cells to target a specific type of blood cancer in their first clinical trials.

Among several dozen patients who would typically have only had months to live, early experimental trials that used the immune system’s T-cells to target cancers had “extraordinary results”.

In one study, 94% of participants with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) saw symptoms vanish completely. Patients with other blood cancers had response rates greater than 80%, and more than half experienced complete remission.

Speaking at the annual meeting for the American Association for the Advancement for Science (AAAS), researcher Stanley Riddell said: “This is unprecedented in medicine, to be honest, to get response rates in this range in these very advanced patients.”
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Denying Death: Is Radically Longer Life Good for Society? - Singularity HUB

Denying Death: Is Radically Longer Life Good for Society? - Singularity HUB | Longevity science | Scoop.it
The aging literature is replete with treatments that could prolong lifespan by 20-40%, at least in lab animals. Interventions such as caloric restriction, rapamycin and metformin have been studied for decades for their anti-aging capacity. Although there is still some discrepancy in their effectiveness in primates, the biomedical community agrees that they’re promising.

What’s more, new interventions keep coming out. In the past two years, multiple scientific teams demonstrated the rejuvenating powers of young blood. Just last week, a study published in the esteemed journal Nature found that eliminating senescent cells in aged mice boosted their lifespan by a hefty 30%.
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Clearing out the clutter: ‘senolytic’ drugs improve vascular health in mice | KurzweilAI

Clearing out the clutter: ‘senolytic’ drugs improve vascular health in mice | KurzweilAI | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Mayo Clinic researchers have demonstrated the first study in which repeated treatments to remove senescent cells (cells that stop dividing due to age or stress) in mice improve age-related vascular conditions — and may possibly reduce cardiovascular disease and death.

The researchers intermittently gave the mice a cocktail of two senolytic drugs (ones that selectively induce cell death): dasatinib (a cancer drug, trade name Sprycel) and quercetin*. The drugs cleared (killed off) senescent cells in naturally aged and atherosclerotic mice. The treatment did not reduce the size of plaques in mice with high cholesterol, but did reduce calcification of existing plaques on the interior of vessel walls.**

The findings appear online (open access) in Aging Cell.
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Implantable ‘stentrode’ to allow paralyzed patients to control an exoskeleton with their mind | KurzweilAI

Implantable ‘stentrode’ to allow paralyzed patients to control an exoskeleton with their mind | KurzweilAI | Longevity science | Scoop.it

A DARPA-funded research team has created a novel new minimally invasive brain-machine interface and recording device that can be implanted into the brain through blood vessels, reducing the need for invasive surgery and the risks associated with breaching the blood-brain barrier when treating patients for physical disabilities and neurological disorders.

The new technology, developed by University of Melbourne medical researchers under DARPA’s Reliable Neural-Interface Technology (RE-NET) program, promises to give people with spinal cord injuries new hope to walk again.

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How to turn a fitness goal into a lifetime of good health (fluctuating weight included)

How to turn a fitness goal into a lifetime of good health (fluctuating weight included) | Longevity science | Scoop.it
envision a journey to good health — complete with numerous peaks and valleys. That means being mentally and emotionally prepared and having behaviors in place to deal with the myriad changes and challenges that come even after the finish line. It’s not about goals or measurements but rather establishing the right mind-set to change your life for the better.
Ray and Terry's 's insight:

Keep going, keep trying. It is not a vacation, but a lifetime of good health.


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Gene Editing Without Foreign DNA | The Scientist Magazine®

Gene Editing Without Foreign DNA | The Scientist Magazine® | Longevity science | Scoop.it
The ongoing quest to increase the yield of crops and produce varieties resistant to disease, drought, and pests has been aided by the development of gene-editing technologies. These days, probably the most commonly used gene-editing approach in labs is the CRISPR/Cas9 system, in which a guide RNA—specially designed to match part of the sequence of a target gene—positions the Cas9 nuclease at that gene, enabling it to chop the DNA.
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Implantable device translates thought into action for people with spinal injuries

Implantable device translates thought into action for people with spinal injuries | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Researchers in Australia have built an implantable brain-machine interface (BMI) that may give people with spinal cord injuries the ability to walk again using the power of their own thoughts. Consisting of a stent-based electrode, known as a "stentrode", implanted within a blood vessel of a patient's brain, along with a power supply and transmitter inserted under the skin in front of the shoulder, the new system creates a minimally invasive BMI that is capable of translating thoughts into action.

The bionic device does this by sensing certain types of neural activity and transmitting these to a processor, which then supplies signals to move the recipient's own limbs though the use of an exoskeleton or to control powered artificial arms or legs. Roughly the size of an ordinary paperclip, the stentrode is able to be implanted in a person's brain without the need for major surgery – instead, it is fed into the head using a catheter snaking up through an artery starting in the leg.
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Bats' 24/7 immunity holds clues to tackling infectious disease

Bats' 24/7 immunity holds clues to tackling infectious disease | Longevity science | Scoop.it
If bats were as susceptible to viruses like Ebola as humans are, then blindness would be the least of their worries. But despite serving as a natural host for more than 100 different viruses, these nocturnal mammals don't display any resulting signs of disease. Australian scientists are claiming to have now figured out why, in a revelation that potentially brings us a step closer to safeguarding the human population from Ebola and other deadly diseases.

The remarkable resilience of bats in the face of seemingly overwhelming viral infection has long sparked the interest of immunology researchers. If we could somehow mimic the animal's ability to harbor killer viruses without succumbing to their harmful effects, then we'd be much better placed to tackle infectious diseases.
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Cancer cells in 3D | KurzweilAI

Cancer cells in 3D | KurzweilAI | Longevity science | Scoop.it

A new high-resolution microscope makes it possible to visualize cancer cells in 3D and record how they are signaling to other parts of their environment — revealing previously unappreciated biology of how cancer cells survive and disperse within living things. Based on ”microenvironmental selective plane illumination microscopy” (meSPIM), the new microscope is designed to image cells in microenvironments free of hard surfaces near the sample.

“There is clear evidence that the environment strongly affects cellular behavior — thus, the value of cell culture experiments on glass must at least be questioned,” says senior author Reto Fiolka...

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Could ‘smart skin’ made of recyclable materials transform medicine and robotics? | KurzweilAI

Could ‘smart skin’ made of recyclable materials transform medicine and robotics? | KurzweilAI | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Here’s a challenge: using only low-cost materials available in your house (such as aluminum foil, pencil, scotch tape, sticky-notes, napkins, and sponges), build sensitive sensors (“smart skin”) for detecting temperature, humidity, pH, pressure, touch, flow, motion, and proximity (at a distance of 13 cm). Your sensors must show reliable and consistent results and be capable of connecting to low-cost, tiny computers such as Arduino and Raspberry Pi devices.

The goal here is to replace expensive manufacturing processes for creating paper-based sensors with a simple recyclable 3D stacked 6 × 6 “paper skin” array for simultaneous sensing, made solely from household resources, according to Muhammad Mustafa Hussain, senior author of an Advanced Materials Technologies journal open-access paper and professor at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) in Saudi Arabia.
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A mitochondrial-targeted ubiquinone modulates muscle lipid profile and improves mitochondrial respiration in obesogenic diet-fed rats. - PubMed - NCBI

The prevalence of the metabolic syndrome components including abdominal obesity, dyslipidaemia and insulin resistance is increasing in both developed and developing countries. It is generally accepted that the development of these features is preceded by, or accompanied with, impaired mitochondrial function.


The present study was designed to analyse the effects of a mitochondrial-targeted lipophilic ubiquinone (MitoQ) on muscle lipid profile modulation and mitochondrial function in obesogenic diet-fed rats. For this purpose, twenty-four young male Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into three groups and fed one of the following diets: (1) control, (2) high fat (HF) and (3) HF+MitoQ. After 8 weeks, mitochondrial function markers and lipid metabolism/profile modifications in skeletal muscle were measured. The HF diet was effective at inducing the major features of the metabolic syndrome - namely, obesity, hepatic enlargement and glucose intolerance.


MitoQ intake prevented the increase in rat body weight, attenuated the increase in adipose tissue and liver weights and partially reversed glucose intolerance. At the muscle level, the HF diet induced moderate TAG accumulation associated with important modifications in the muscle phospholipid classes and in the fatty acid composition of total muscle lipid. These lipid modifications were accompanied with decrease in mitochondrial respiration.


MitoQ intake corrected the lipid alterations and restored mitochondrial respiration. These results indicate that MitoQ protected obesogenic diet-fed rats from some features of the metabolic syndrome through its effects on muscle lipid metabolism and mitochondrial activity.


These findings suggest that MitoQ is a promising candidate for future human trials in the metabolic syndrome prevention.

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Cancer Prevention Diet: Lower Your Risk with Cancer-Fighting Foods

Cancer Prevention Diet: Lower Your Risk with Cancer-Fighting Foods | Longevity science | Scoop.it

Here are some ways reduce your exposure to carcinogens:

>Do not cook oils on high heat. Low-heat cooking or baking (less than 240 degrees) prevents oils or fats from turning carcinogenic. Instead of deep-frying, pan-frying, and sautéing, opt for healthier methods such as baking, boiling, steaming, or broiling.


>Go easy on the barbecue. Burning or charring meats creates carcinogenic substances. If you do choose to barbecue, don’t overcook the meat and be sure to cook at the proper temperature (not too hot).


>Store oils in a cool dark place in airtight containers, as they quickly become rancid when exposed to heat, light, and air.


>Choose fresh meats, ideally organic and grass-fed, instead of processed meat that has been cured, dried, preserved, or smoked.


>Avoid foods that look or smell moldy, as they likely contain aflatoxin, a strong carcinogen. Aflatoxin is most commonly found on moldy peanuts. Nuts will stay fresh longer if kept in the refrigerator or freezer.


>Be careful what you put in the microwave. Use waxed paper rather than plastic wrap to cover your food in the microwave. And always use microwave-safe containers.

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3D ‘bioprinter’ produces bone, muscle, and cartilage

“It has been challenging to produce human scale tissues with 3D printing because larger tissues require additional nutrition,” Dr. Anthony Atala from Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina told Reuters Health by email.

His team developed a process they call “the integrated tissue and organ printing system,” or ITOP for short. ITOP produces a network of tiny channels that allows the printed tissue to be nourished after being implanted into a living animal.

The researchers produced three types of tissue – bone, cartilage, and muscle – and transplanted it into rats and mice.
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Little People of Ecuador Could Hold Key to Cancer Cure

Little People of Ecuador Could Hold Key to Cancer Cure | Longevity science | Scoop.it
In the remote villages of Ecuador, 100 very small people may hold the key to a huge medical breakthrough.

They all suffer from Laron Syndrome, an incredibly rare genetic disorder that stops them from growing taller than 4 feet but also seems to protect them against cancer and diabetes and maybe even heart disease and Alzheimer's.

"There's only one patient that has died of cancer among all of the subjects. And that is fascinating," said Dr. Jaime Guevara-Aguirre, who has been studying the Laron population for 30 years.
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Odoreader accurately detects prostate cancer from urine

Odoreader accurately detects prostate cancer from urine | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Standard prostate-specific antigen (PSA) tests for prostate cancer are far from ideal, sometimes resulting in unnecessary biopsies, and even failing to detect some cancers altogether. With the goal of developing a more capable alternative, a team of researchers has turned to a machine it calls the Odoreader, which is designed to analyze urine samples to provide a non-invasive prostate cancer test.

The new research is a collaboration between the University of Liverpool and the University of the West of England in Bristol. It focuses on a device called the Odoreader, which was used back in 2013 to detect bladder cancer by analyzing the odors in urine, with a 100 percent success rate.
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Spinning up artificial capillaries with a cotton candy machine

Spinning up artificial capillaries with a cotton candy machine | Longevity science | Scoop.it
From growing a full thymus gland inside a mouse, to creating a slice of artificial liver tissue, to using ink jet printing technology to create a human ear, researchers are steadily moving us toward the day when ordering up a new organ could be as commonplace as ordering an MRI is today. One of the hurdles in creating lab-grown organs, though, is that the cells in such a structure need a way to receive nutrients. Researchers at Vanderbilt University (VU) may have just leaped that hurdle using a most unexpected tool – a cotton candy machine.

Leon Bellan, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at VU, has actually been tinkering with cotton candy machines for some time after realizing the machines were perfect at spinning out tiny threads that resembled human capillaries.
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Could humans ever regenerate limbs? | KurzweilAI

Could humans ever regenerate limbs? | KurzweilAI | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Turns out there are also rare cases of children and young adults who have had tips of digits regenerated. And there are specific “steps of epimorphic regeneration to promote the partial or complete restoration of a biological digit or limb after amputations,” the scientists believe.
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Robots in Health Care Could Lead to a Doctorless Hospital - Singularity HUB

Robots in Health Care Could Lead to a Doctorless Hospital - Singularity HUB | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Hospitals globally have been slow to adopt robotics and artificial intelligence into patient care, although both have been widely used and tested in other industries.

Medicine has traditionally been slow to change, as safety is at its core. Financial pressures will inevitably force industry and governments to recognize that when robots can do something better and for the same price as humans, the robot way will be the only way.
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Turning Tumor Cells Against Cancer | The Scientist Magazine®

Turning Tumor Cells Against Cancer | The Scientist Magazine® | Longevity science | Scoop.it
Five years ago, scientists at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City showed that circulating tumor cells (CTCs) could both colonize new metastases and travel back to their tumors of origin. Taking advantage of this bidirectional CTC movement, researchers at the University of New Mexico and their colleagues injected mice with CTCs that were genetically modified (GM) to express an anticancer cytokine. In a mouse study, the researchers found that these GM CTCs were able to home to tumors and release the cytokine, leading to decreased tumor growth. The results, published today (February 8) in PNAS, suggest cancer cells may be useful tools for anticancer therapies.

“This paper is an elegant example of thinking outside the box,” said Elizabeth Comen, a medical oncologist and researcher at Memorial Sloan Kettering who was not involved with the work. “To leverage the cancer cell’s powerful ability to travel all over the body against tumors is fascinating.”
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