Modified probiotics, the beneficial bacteria touted for their role in digestive health, could one day decrease the risk of Listeria infection in people with susceptible immune systems, according to Purdue University research. Arun Bhunia, a professor of food science; Mary Anne Amalaradjou, a Purdue postdoctoral researcher; and Ok Kyung Koo, a former Purdue doctoral student, found that the same Listeria protein that allows the bacteria to pass through intestinal cells and into bloodstreams can help block those same paths when added to a probiotic. "Based on the research, it looks very promising that we would get a significant reduction in Listeria infections, " said Bhunia, whose findings were published this month in the journal PLoS One. Bhunia's earlier work showed that Listeria triggers intestinal cells to express heat shock protein 60 on their surfaces.
The discovery that a protein called CXCL5 is responsible for triggering the pain of sunburn may indicate it has a wider role in other inflammation-related conditions. This could pave the way for new drugs that have fewer side effects than current painkillers and analgesics, said UK researchers whose work is published in 6 July issue of Science Translational Medicine. There aren't many drugs that work effectively against pain that persists for hours and days, and those that do, don't always give full relief. Also, their prolonged use can result in severe side effects, so finding out more about the chemicals behind pain in the body could be helpful to improving treatments in this field, said the researchers. Senior author Dr Stephen McMahon, a professor of physiology at King's College London, and colleagues, had a hunch they might find some clues by looking for undiscovered cytokines and chemokines that might be involved in inflammatory pain.
Move over, boy bands of America - there's a new group in town. Four middle-school students from Carmel Valley Middle School in San Diego, California, entered The Christopher Columbus Awards Competition, a science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) program that challenges middle-school students to identify a community problem and solve it using science and technology. Taking a cue from the popular group the Backstreet Boys, the students call themselves the Back Straight Boys. The Boys took first place nationally and are presenting their study at the upcoming Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 55th Annual Meeting at the Red Rock Hotel in Las Vegas. After experiencing firsthand the discomfort that computer use can cause, Sean Colford, Ethan Epstein, Brandon Loye, and Michael Walsh, now in their freshman year at Canyon Crest Academy in San Diego, decided to study improper posture at computer workstations and the consequent musculoskeletal problems among children and adults in classrooms and offices.
Two years ago, a widely publicized scientific report plucked an old mouse virus out of obscurity and held it up as a possible cause of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. According to a new study published today, May 31st, by a group of researchers in California, Wisconsin and Illinois, that report was wrong. The mouse virus is not the culprit in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, said University of California, San Francisco Professor Jay A. Levy, MD, the senior author on the study, published this week by the journal Science. "There is no evidence of this mouse virus in human blood, " said Levy, a professor in the Department of Medicine and director of the Laboratory for Tumor and AIDS Virus Research at UCSF. Most likely, Levy said, the mouse virus was detected two years ago in blood samples from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome patients because chemical reagents and cell lines used in the laboratory where it was identified were contaminated with the virus.
While lab tests and imaging can sometimes help diagnose juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA), a physical examination and thorough patient history are the most valuable tools in identifying this disease. According to a new literature review from the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (JAAOS), the rate of false positives in laboratory evaluations and imaging studies meant to screen for juvenile arthritis makes their value limited. Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (formerly known as juvenile rheumatoid arthritis ) is an autoimmune disease that affects nearly 300, 000 children in the United States under the age of 18. The cause is not known, and it does not appear to be genetic, although some family members may suffer from other autoimmune disorders. Symptoms may include: joint stiffness in the morning that improves later in the day;