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Happy Interior Blog: Two Years Blogging & Giveaway Of The Book 'Wohnideen aus dem wahren Leben'

Happy Interior Blog: Two Years Blogging & Giveaway Of The Book 'Wohnideen aus dem wahren Leben' | science | Scoop.it

Today my blog is celebrating its second anniversary. To celebrate the occasion I'm giving away three copies of my interior design book. Leave a comment on the blog to win. Open internationally!


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Pandoraviruses: Virus particles more complex then primitive eukaryotic cells

Pandoraviruses: Virus particles more complex then primitive eukaryotic cells | science | Scoop.it

With the discovery of Mimivirus ten years ago and, more recently, Megavirus chilensis , researchers thought they had reached the farthest corners of the viral world in terms of size and genetic complexity. With a diameter in the region of a micrometer and a genome incorporating more than 1,100 genes, these giant viruses, which infect amoebas of the Acanthamoeba genus, had already largely encroached on areas previously thought to be the exclusive domain of bacteria.

 

For the sake of comparison, common viruses such as the influenza or AIDS viruses, only contain around ten genes each.In the article published in Science, the researchers announced they had discovered two new giant viruses: •Pandoravirus salinus, on the coast of Chile;•Pandoravirus dulcis, in a freshwater pond in Melbourne, Australia.Detailed analysis has shown that these first two Pandoraviruses have virtually nothing in common with previously characterized giant viruses. What's more, only a very small percentage (6%) of proteins encoded by Pandoravirus salinus are similar to those already identified in other viruses or cellular organisms. With a genome of this size, Pandoravirus salinus has just demonstrated that viruses can be more complex than some eukaryotic cells . Another unusual feature of Pandoraviruses is that they have no gene allowing them to build a protein like the capsid protein, which is the basic building block of traditional viruses.

 

Despite all these novel properties, Pandoraviruses display the essential characteristics of other viruses in that they contain no ribosome, produce no energy and do not divide.This groundbreaking research included an analysis of the Pandoravirus salinus proteome, which proved that the proteins making it up are consistent with those predicted by the virus’ genome sequence. Pandoraviruses thus use the universal genetic code shared by all living organisms on the planet. This shows just how much more there is to learn regarding microscopic biodiversity as soon as new environments are considered. The simultaneous discovery of two specimens of this new virus family in sediments located 15,000 km apart indicates that Pandoraviruses, which were completely unknown until now, are very likely not rare. It definitively bridges the gap between viruses and cells – a gap that was proclaimed as dogma at the very outset of modern virology back in the 1950s. It also suggests that cell life could have emerged with a far greater variety of pre-cellular forms than those conventionally considered, as the new giant virus has almost no equivalent among the three recognized domains of cellular life, namely eukaryota (or eukaryotes), eubacteria, and archaea.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Nicole 's curator insight, October 18, 2013 9:19 AM

Complex virus genome.

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Muslim hajj crowds thinned by virus concerns - Las Vegas Sun

Muslim hajj crowds thinned by virus concerns - Las Vegas Sun | science | Scoop.it
Sydney Morning Herald Muslim hajj crowds thinned by virus concerns Las Vegas Sun Muslims from across the world poured Sunday into a sprawling tent city in the Saudi desert before the start of the annual Islamic hajj pilgrimage, but the number of...
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Team discovers new form of virus reproduction - Phys.Org

Team discovers new form of virus reproduction - Phys.Org | science | Scoop.it
Team discovers new form of virus reproduction
Phys.Org
The breakthrough is also very important since the virus that has been analysed is representative of other viruses that infect all the kinds of existing cells: archaea, bacteria and eukaryotic.
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HIV AIDs Lady confesses to sleeping with many men & infecting them with the Virus omo oodua blog

More related Video Post Omo Oodua news: Related Video Post: VIDEO: SEE Big Yarnsh Shaking, Gospel Singer Maheeda Twé*rking - http://bit.ly/19QZwRW Video: Pro...
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The Cold Sore Virus May Help Kids Fight Cancer (Op-Ed) - LiveScience.com

The Cold Sore Virus May Help Kids Fight Cancer (Op-Ed) - LiveScience.com | science | Scoop.it
LiveScience.com The Cold Sore Virus May Help Kids Fight Cancer (Op-Ed) LiveScience.com Parents will go to great lengths to help their kids avoid viruses, but a new approach to battling childhood cancer is based on children getting a certain virus,...
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First death this year from West Nile Virus - Toledo Blade

First death this year from West Nile Virus - Toledo Blade | science | Scoop.it
YourErie
First death this year from West Nile Virus
Toledo Blade
The Lucas County Health Department has confirmed that a Toledo woman has died from a West Nile Virus-related infection.
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Newly found skull suggests that half-a-dozen species of human ancestors were all H. erectus

Newly found skull suggests that half-a-dozen species of human ancestors were all H. erectus | science | Scoop.it

A haul of fossils found in Georgia suggests that half a dozen species of early human ancestor were actually all Homo erectus.

 

The spectacular fossilised skull of an ancient human ancestor that died nearly two million years ago in central Asia has forced scientists to rethink the story of early human evolution.

 

Anthropologists unearthed the skull at a site in Dmanisi, a small town in southern Georgia, where other remains of human ancestors, simple stone tools and long-extinct animals have been dated to 1.8m years old.

Experts believe the skull is one of the most important fossil finds to date, but it has proved as controversial as it is stunning. Analysis of the skull and other remains at Dmanisi suggests that scientists have been too ready to name separate species of human ancestors in Africa. Many of those species may now have to be wiped from the textbooks.

 

The latest fossil is the only intact skull ever found of a human ancestor that lived in the early Pleistocene, when our predecessors first walked out of Africa. The skull adds to a haul of bones recovered from Dmanisi that belong to five individuals, most likely an elderly male, two other adult males, a young female and a juvenile of unknown sex.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Drug Helps Viruses Kill Cancer Cells

Drug Helps Viruses Kill Cancer Cells | science | Scoop.it

"Parvoviruses cause no harm in humans, but they can attack and kill cancer cells. Since 1992, scientists at the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) have been studying these viruses with the aim of developing a viral therapy to treat glioblastomas, a type of aggressively growing brain cancer. A clinical trial has been conducted since 2011 at the Heidelberg University Neurosurgery Hospital to test the safety of treating cancer patients with the parvovirus H-1.

 "We obtained impressive results in preclinical trials with parvovirus H-1 in brain tumors," says Dr. Antonio Marchini, a virologist at DKFZ. "However, the oncolytic effect of the viruses is weaker in other cancers. Therefore, we are searching for ways to increase the therapeutic potential of the viruses." In doing so, the virologists also tested valproic acid, a compound belonging to a group of drugs called HDAC inhibitors. These inhibitors raise the transcription of many genes that have been chemically silenced. Valproic acid is commonly used to treat epilepsy and has also proven effective in treating specific types of cancer. The researchers initially used a combination of parvoviruses and valproic acid to treat tumor cells that had been obtained from cervical and pancreatic carcinomas and raised in the culture dish. In both types of cancer, the drug raised the rate of virus-induced cell death; in some cases, the cancer cells were even completely eliminated."
Via Curated by A4BC.ORG
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Curated by A4BC.ORG's curator insight, October 16, 2013 7:10 PM

Because this research shows promise focused on brain, cervical, and pancreatic cancer using viral therapy to kill these cancer cells, it may also be useful if studied targeting breast and other types of cancer cells. 

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Dangerous viruses: New weapons against new foes | The Why Files

Dangerous viruses: New weapons against new foes | The Why Files | science | Scoop.it
Old-style outbreak investigations can take years. Mammals may carry 320000 viruses. Some can start an epidemic if they "jump" to people. Can ecological knowledge support new prevention strategies to block the "jumpers"?
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11th Case Of West Nile Virus In Dallas County - CBS Local

11th Case Of West Nile Virus In Dallas County - CBS Local | science | Scoop.it
Toledo Blade
11th Case Of West Nile Virus In Dallas County
CBS Local
DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Officials with Dallas County Health and Human Services (DCHHS) have confirmed that an 11th person has contracted the West Nile virus.
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100-Million-Year-Old Spider Attack Preserved in Amber

100-Million-Year-Old Spider Attack Preserved in Amber | science | Scoop.it

Looks like this 100-million-year old spider didn’t get to enjoy its final meal. Trapped in a piece of amber, the juvenile spider appears to be on the cusp of devouring a male wasp that was caught in its web. Such a grisly scene between spider and prey has never before been found in the fossil record.

 

The amazing snapshot shows an event that occurred in the Early Cretaceous period, about 97 to 110 million years ago, in the Hukawng Valley of Myanmar, “almost certainly with dinosaurs wandering nearby,” as the press release about this discovery reports. The spider is a social orb-weaver spider, formally known asGeratonephila burmanica, and its victim is a wasp of the species Cascoscelio incassus. Both species are extinct today but the fossil suggests that insect behavior from the past is not too different from the present.

 

Related wasp species are known to parasitize spider eggs, so there is some poetic justice in the spider’s attack. “This was the wasp’s worst nightmare, and it never ended. The wasp was watching the spider just as it was about to be attacked, when tree resin flowed over and captured both of them,” said entomologist George Poinar Jr. of Oregon State University in the release.

 

This latest fossil doesn’t just capture the dramatic spider attack but also evidence of spider social life in the Early Cretaceous. Another spider, an adult male, is captured some distance away in the amber, co-habiting on the same web as the juvenile. Males of modern-day social orb-weavers are typically found living on female-constructed webs, where they assist in capturing insects and maintaining the web.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Human stem cells cloned for the first time

Human stem cells cloned for the first time | science | Scoop.it

An international team of scientists announced today that for the first time ever, they were able to create new human stem cells by cloning older, fully mature human cells. The process cannot be used to create full human clones, as the scientists involved were quick to point out, but it does allow for cells to be grown to fit specific functions within an individual's body — resulting in new, patient-specific liver cells or heart cells that actually pulse on their own, for example.

 

Eventually, scientists hope to refine the process to the point it could be used to help treat disease and even create whole custom organs, but that is likely to be several years away at the earliest. "While there is much work to be done in developing safe and effective stem cell treatments, we believe this is a significant step forward in developing the cells that could be used in regenerative medicine," said Shoukhrat Mitalipov, the leader of the research team and a senior scientist at the Oregon National Primate Research Center (ONPRC), in a news release.

 

The research team was led by scientists at the Oregon Health & Science University, who used a technique similar to the one that created Dolly the sheep, the first mammal cloned from adult cells, back in 1996. In a basic sense, this method involves taking an adult cell from a patient's body, sucking out the central portion containing DNA (the nucleus), then injecting this material into an empty egg cell donated by another human volunteer. The genetic material from the adult cell tells the empty egg cell what type it should mature into.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Happy Interior Blog: Scandinavian Simplicity: Saariwood Furniture

Happy Interior Blog: Scandinavian Simplicity: Saariwood Furniture | science | Scoop.it

Sometimes furniture design can be completely unpretentious! Because the quality lies in the detail: handmade, locally sourced wood from Finland and an ecological conscience - meet Saariwood on the blog!


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PLOS Computational Biology: Virus Encoded MHC-Like Decoys Diversify the Inhibitory KIR Repertoire

PLOS Computational Biology: Virus Encoded MHC-Like Decoys Diversify the Inhibitory KIR Repertoire | science | Scoop.it
Abstract

Natural killer (NK) cells are circulating lymphocytes that play an important role in the control of viral infections and tumors. Their functions are regulated by several activating and inhibitory receptors. A subset of these receptors in human NK cells are the killer immunoglobulin-like receptors (KIRs), which interact with the highly polymorphic MHC class I molecules. One important function of NK cells is to detect cells that have down-regulated MHC expression (missing-self). Because MHC molecules have non polymorphic regions, their expression could have been monitored with a limited set of monomorphic receptors. Surprisingly, the KIR family has a remarkable genetic diversity, the function of which remains poorly understood. The mouse cytomegalovirus (MCMV) is able to evade NK cell responses by coding “decoy” molecules that mimic MHC class I. This interaction was suggested to have driven the evolution of novel NK cell receptors. Inspired by the MCMV system, we develop an agent-based model of a host population infected with viruses that are able to evolve MHC down-regulation and decoy molecules. Our simulations show that specific recognition of MHC class I molecules by inhibitory KIRs provides excellent protection against viruses evolving decoys, and that the diversity of inhibitory KIRs will subsequently evolve as a result of the required discrimination between host MHC molecules and decoy molecules.

 


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Virus that 'eats' bacteria that causes Clostridium difficile could spell the ... - Belfast Telegraph

Virus that 'eats' bacteria that causes Clostridium difficile could spell the ... - Belfast Telegraph | science | Scoop.it
Belfast Telegraph
Virus that 'eats' bacteria that causes Clostridium difficile could spell the ...
Belfast Telegraph
The virus, know as a bacteriophage, meaning bacteria eater, or phage for short, attaches to the bacteria cell known as the host.
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How Long Would It Take for a Deadly Virus to Wipe Out Humanity

How Long Would It Take for a Deadly Virus to Wipe Out Humanity | science | Scoop.it
how long do you think it would take for a virus to wipe out the world? http://t.co/5FiQI8Bzgx
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New World Bats Harbor Diverse Influenza A Viruses

New World Bats Harbor Diverse Influenza A Viruses | science | Scoop.it

Previous studies indicated that a novel influenza A virus (H17N10) was circulating in fruit bats from Guatemala (Central America). Herein, we investigated whether similar viruses are present in bat species from South America. Analysis of rectal swabs from bats sampled in the Amazon rainforest region of Peru identified another new influenza A virus from bats that is phylogenetically distinct from the one identified in Guatemala. The genes that encode the surface proteins of the new virus from the flat-faced fruit bat were designated as new subtype H18N11. Serologic testing of blood samples from several species of Peruvian bats indicated a high prevalence of antibodies to the surface proteins. Phylogenetic analyses demonstrate that bat populations from Central and South America maintain as much influenza virus genetic diversity in some gene segments as all other mammalian and avian species combined. The crystal structures of the hemagglutinin and neuraminidase proteins indicate that sialic acid is not a receptor for virus attachment nor a substrate for release, suggesting a novel mechanism of influenza A virus attachment and activation of membrane fusion for entry into host cells. In summary, our findings indicate that bats constitute a potentially important reservoir for influenza viruses.


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Mammals Have Similar Virus-Killing Power [as] Seen In Plants

Mammals Have Similar Virus-Killing Power [as] Seen In Plants | science | Scoop.it

Previous research has shown that plants and invertebrates use an immune response called the RNA interference(RNAi) pathway to build a weapon against a viral infection.

Two new studies from scientists at the University of California, Riverside have found that a similar pathway exists in mammals, but it is typically suppressed by viral proteins. The study researchers said if this suppression could be lifted, it would open the door to a completely new way to treat a viral infection.

In the studies, the scientists were able to remove the suppressor protein from the virus. This allowed laboratory mice to quickly eliminate an infection from the Nodamura virus from their system using the RNAi process, which dispatches small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) to kill the disease.


Via Ed Rybicki
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Ed Rybicki's curator insight, October 12, 2013 8:54 AM

I know of Shou-Wei Ding from many years ago, when he worked on the plant (and original) CMV and the 2b gene: it has long been suspected that mammals should be similar to their plant and insect cousins; it is heartening to see that in fact they are.

Of course, the mammal folk will now quickly cream all the kudos for this, and the Nobel will NOT go to a plant or insect virologist!

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Two county residents recently infected with West Nile virus - abc7news.com

Two county residents recently infected with West Nile virus - abc7news.com | science | Scoop.it
abc7news.com
Two county residents recently infected with West Nile virus
abc7news.com
Health officials say it's the worst year ever for West Nile in Texas, which has seen nearly half the country's deaths from the virus this year.
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Alternative reassortment events leading to transmissible H9N1 influenza viruses in the ferret model

Influenza A H9N2 viruses are common poultry pathogens that occasionally infect swine and humans. It has been shown previously with H9N2 viruses, reassortment can generate novel viruses with increased transmissibility. Here we demonstrate the modeling power of a novel transfection based inoculation system to select reassortant viruses under in vivo selective pressure. Plasmids containing the genes from an H9N2 virus and a pandemic H1N1 (pH1N1) virus were transfected into HEK 293T cells to potentially generate the full panel of possible H9 reassortants. These cells were then used to inoculate ferrets and population dynamics were studied. Two respiratory droplet transmissible H9N1 viruses were selected by this method, indicating a selective pressure in ferrets for the novel combination of surface genes. These results show that a transfection based inoculation system is a fast and efficient method to model reassortment, and highlights the risk of reassortment between H9N2 and pH1N1 viruses.


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Genetically modified cold virus a 'promising' new TB vaccine - CBC (2013)

Genetically modified cold virus a 'promising' new TB vaccine - CBC (2013) | science | Scoop.it

Researchers at McMaster University are heralding the success of early trials of a “booster” vaccine that could serve as a potent tool in global fight against tuberculosis... 

 

The vaccine, developed from a genetically modified version of the cold virus, is intended to function as a booster for the Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccine, which was introduced the 1920s and is currently the only tuberculosis vaccine on the market... the new vaccine helps reactivate immunity in people who have already been inoculated with the BCG vaccine.

 

The development of new vaccines is important, said Xing, because BCG  “is no longer effective enough to curb the global tuberculosis threat. So we need new tools.”... According to the World Health Organization, 8.7 million people fell ill with tuberculosis in 2011. In the same year, 1.4 million patients died from disease, a flu-like condition that attacks the lungs... The WHO estimates there were 310,000 cases of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis in 2011... 

 

The McMaster vaccine has been in the works for more than a decade. The team did clinical trials on animals first. It began its first clinical trials on humans in 2009 and finished last year. 

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/hamilton/news/genetically-modified-cold-virus-a-promising-new-tb-vaccine-1.1876747

 


Via Alexander J. Stein
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Alexander J. Stein's curator insight, October 18, 2013 12:44 AM

The comments are interesting: "Good news... Well done! ... Impressive. Congratulations... How wonderful! ..." >> People have no problems with genetically modified viruses... 

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Hepatitis B viruses in bats

Hepatitis B viruses in bats | science | Scoop.it
The recent finding of HBV in bats raises the possibility of zoonotic introduction of the virus, and has implications for eradication of the disease.

Via Kenzibit
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Kenzibit's curator insight, October 18, 2013 3:31 PM
Hepatitis B viruses have been found in bats - and one can infect human cells.
Ed Rybicki's comment, October 19, 2013 4:57 AM
Furry mosquitoes, I keep telling you...
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Virus-sabotaging protein may help people defy HIV - health - 17 October 2013 - New Scientist

Virus-sabotaging protein may help people defy HIV - health - 17 October 2013 - New Scientist | science | Scoop.it
Extra 'saboteur' protein in the cytoplasm of blood cells may stop HIV from copying itself without the need for drugs (Virus-sabotaging protein in the cytoplasm of blood cells may help people defy #HIV http://t.co/6GBzmKF4bD)...
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Mouse Brain Mapped in Greatest Detail Yet

Mouse Brain Mapped in Greatest Detail Yet | science | Scoop.it
Australian scientists have created the most detailed atlas of the mouse brain, a development that is helping in the fight against brain disease.

 

“The new brain atlas provided a fundamental tool for the neuroscience community,” said Dr Jeremy Ullmann, lead author of a paper describing the atlas in the journal NeuroImage.

 

The new tool will allow researchers to map what parts of the brain are affected in mouse models of brain disease – such as brain cancer, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimers disease.

 

“The mouse is now the most widely used animal model for neuroscience research and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is fundamental to investigating changes in the brain,” Dr Ullman said.

 

“Our atlas is already much in demand internationally because it allows researchers to use MRI to automatically map brain structures.”

 

“In making these world-first maps, we had the advantage of using the most powerful MRI scanners in the Southern Hemisphere, backed up by leaders in digital image analysis, resulting in remarkably clear images of the brain,” explained senior author Prof David Reutens from the University of Queensland’s Centre for Advanced Imaging.

 

The project’s lead neuroanatomist, Prof Charles Watson from Curtin University, said: “the study will open the door to accurate analysis of gene targeting in the mouse brain.”

 

“The invention of gene targeting in the mouse has made this species the centerpiece of studies on models of human brain disease. MRI allows researchers to follow changes in the brain over time in the same animals,” he said.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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