In a landmark study for the field of personalized medicine, using "Personal Omics Profiling" a Stanford geneticist and his colleagues, analyzed his genome to predict a genetic disposition to type 2 diabetes, tracked at the molecular level how it developed in his body, and then went away again after dietary and lifestyle changes. Dr Michale Snyder, Professor and Chair of Genetics at Stanford University in California, and also Director of Stanford's Center for Genomics and Personalized Medicine, and colleagues published the results of their two-year long study of the most intimate secrets of Snyder's DNA, RNA, bloodborne proteins, metabolites and signaling molecules, in the 14 March online issue of Cell. Glimpse of the Future of Medicine They observed, as he succumbed to two viral infections, and how his immune system responded.
An international team of scientists has announced a new advance in the ability to target and destroy certain cancer cells. A group led by the University of Leicester has shown that particular cancer cells are especially sensitive to a protein called p21. This protein usually forces normal and cancer cells to stop dividing but it was recently shown that in some cases it can also kill cancer cells. However, scientists have been unclear about how this happens. Researcher Salvador Macip, from the University of Leicester Department of Biochemistry, said: "If we could harness this 'killing power' that p21 has, we could think of designing new therapies aimed at increasing its levels in tumours. This is what motivated us to look into it". Now the team from the universities of Leicester and Cardiff in the UK, University of South Carolina, USA and Karolinska Institutet, Sweden has discovered that cells from sarcomas tend to die in response to p21 and that this is determined by the sensitivity of their mitochondria to oxidants.
The traditional way of making medicines from ingredients mixed together in a factory may be joined by a new approach in which doctors administer the ingredients for a medicine separately to patients, and the ingredients combine to produce the medicine inside patients' bodies. That's one promise from an emerging new field of chemistry, according to the scientist who founded it barely a decade ago. Carolyn Bertozzi, Ph.D., spoke on the topic - bioorthogonal chemistry - delivering the latest Kavli Foundation Innovations in Chemistry Lecture at the 243rd National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS). Bertozzi explained that the techniques of bioorthogonal chemistry may fundamentally change the nature of drug development and diagnosis of disease, so that the active ingredients for medicines and substances to image diseased tissue are produced inside patients.
If you go far enough back along the branch of the evolutionary tree of life that humans sit on, you get to the part near the trunk where verterbrates (creatures with spines) split from invertebrates (creatures without spines). Current theories suggest the complex brain we share with our vertebrate relatives appeared after this point, but now, thanks to a marine worm with a proboscis that burrows into sand on the sea floor, a new study from the US is challenging that view. Our brain is much older than we think, suggest researchers from Stanford and the University of Chicago, who write about their findings in the 14 March online issue of Nature. Study author Chris Lowe, an evolutionary biologist at Stanford's Hopkins Marine Station in Pacific Grove, California, told the press: "This paper will change the way people think about brain evolution.
Medicine's recipe for keeping older people active and functioning in their homes and workplaces - and healing younger people injured in catastrophic accidents - may include "noodle gels" and other lab-made invisible filaments that resemble uncooked spaghetti with nanoscale dimensions, a scientist said at the 243rd National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS). Samuel I. Stupp, Ph.D., who presented an ACS plenary lecture, explained that the synthetic pasta-like objects actually are major chemistry advances for regenerative medicine that his research team has accomplished. Regenerative medicine is an emerging field that combines chemistry, biology and engineering. It focuses on the regeneration of tissues and organs for the human body, to repair or replace those damaged through illness, injury, aging or birth defects.