What is new in Biotech

Nitrogen fixation engineering in cereal crops moves a step closer
Credit: slasnyi - Fotolia.com

Nitrogen fixation engineering in cereal crops moves a step closer

19.9.2018   |   Press monitoring

One of the major factors that limit crop growth is the availability of nitrogen, but only bacteria and other single-celled microbes called archaea can take nitrogen from the air and fix it into a form that can be used by plants. The process carried out by these microbes is known as biological nitrogen fixation. Legumes obtain nitrogen from...

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Using biosensors to deliver personalized doses of antibiotics

17.9.2018   |   Press monitoring

At EPFL's Discovery Learning Labs (DLL) – educational facilities designed to promote cross-disciplinary research – a groundbreaking new device is in the works. Eight Master's students in microengineering, bioengineering and life sciences have teamed up (SenSwiss) to develop a portable biosensor as their entry in the SensUs competition, which is...

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Stem cells from baby teeth patch up dental injuries in clinical trial
Credit: Esel Klugohr - Fotolia.com

Stem cells from baby teeth patch up dental injuries in clinical trial

14.9.2018   |   Press monitoring

Your teeth are one of the only parts of your body that can't naturally repair themselves – so when a kid injures a permanent tooth at a young age, they're stuck with that for life. But a new clinical trial has shown promising results in using dental stem cells derived from a patient's baby teeth to bring a "dead" tooth back to life. The...

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Unleashing TIGER on small RNAs
Credit: JBárta.prf.jcu

Unleashing TIGER on small RNAs

12.9.2018   |   Press monitoring

Efforts to explore the landscape of small RNAs (sRNAs) – short RNA molecules that are poorly understood – often use high-throughput sequencing (sRNA-seq). These efforts are hampered by a lack of tools to identify, quantify and analyze all the different sRNAs in sRNA-seq datasets. Kasey Vickers, PhD, and colleagues have now developed a new...

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Superbugs jumping frequently between humans and animals

10.9.2018   |   Press monitoring

MRSA staphylococcus is an example of a superbug. These bacterial strains are resistant to most antibiotics and can cause serious infections. "In the case of MRSA, these bacteria have also spread in hospitals almost worldwide," says Jukka Corander, professor at the University of Helsinki, a member of an international research team that mapped...

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Neutrophil nanosponges soak up proteins that promote rheumatoid arthritis

7.9.2018   |   Press monitoring

Engineers at the University of California San Diego have developed neutrophil "nanosponges" that can safely absorb and neutralize a variety of proteins that play a role in the progression of rheumatoid arthritis. Injections of these nanosponges effectively treated severe rheumatoid arthritis in two mouse models. Administering the nanosponges...

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Scientists decode opium poppy genome
Credit: Louise Joly / Wikimedia Commons

Scientists decode opium poppy genome

5.9.2018   |   Press monitoring

Scientists have determined the DNA code of the opium poppy genome, uncovering key steps in how the plant evolved to produce the pharmaceutical compounds used to make vital medicines. The discovery may pave the way for scientists to improve yields and the disease resistance of the medicinal plant, securing a reliable and cheap supply of the most...

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Can a transgenic chestnut restore a forest icon?
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Can a transgenic chestnut restore a forest icon?

3.9.2018   |   Press monitoring

American chestnuts, towering 30 meters or more, once dominated forests throughout the Appalachian Mountains. But in the early 1900s, a fungal infection appeared on trees at the Bronx Zoo in New York City, and then spread rapidly. The so-called chestnut blight – an accidental import from Asia – releases a toxin that girdles trees and kills...

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Prototype bionic eye created with custom 3D printer
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Prototype bionic eye created with custom 3D printer

31.8.2018   |   Press monitoring

When he was an assistant professor at Princeton University, Michael McAlpine led the development of a 3D-printed bionic ear. Now an associate professor at the University of Minnesota, he has gone on to 3D-print a rudimentary bionic eye – and it could eventually lead to versions capable of replacing the real thing. A McAlpine-led team began with a...

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Metabolic engineering of E. coli for the secretory production of free haem
Credit: Rocky Mountain Laboratories_Wikipedia

Metabolic engineering of E. coli for the secretory production of free haem

29.8.2018   |   Press monitoring

Researchers of KAIST have defined a novel strategy for the secretory production of free haem using engineered Escherichia coli (E. coli) strains. They utilized the C5 pathway, the optimized downstream pathways, and the haem exporter to construct a recombinant micro-organism producing extracellular haem using fed-batch fermentation. This is the...

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