A horse's gut bacteria communicate with the mitochondria, the components in the cells that generate and regulate energy, finds a new study. It reveals the chemical signals, in the form of metabolites produced by the bacteria breaking down food for growth and energy, have the effect of "turning on" specific genes that help the horse to extend its energy output. This study paves the way for dietary interventions that could enhance equine performance.
Researchers at the National Institute for Physiological Sciences in Japan reveal the mechanism of hyperkinetic movements called L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia, which is a major side effect of medication in Parkinson's disease.
End-stage heart-failure patients have a bimodal distribution for DNA CpG-methylation of the heart, and race is the sole variable that explains the difference. Census tracts where the patients lived show that the African-American patients lived in neighborhoods with more racial diversity and poverty than Caucasians, suggesting that the underlying variable may be socioeconomic. DNA methylation differences correlated with differences in heart-failure outcomes, as measured by two-year mortality.
A new study in mice describes novel neurocircuitry between midbrain structures that control feeding behaviors that are under modulatory control by leptin, a hormone made by body fat. Since the discovery of leptin in the 1990s, researchers have wondered how leptin can suppress appetite.
Exposure to phthalates, a class of chemicals widely used in packaging and consumer products, is known to interfere with normal hormone function and development. Now researchers have found evidence linking pregnant women's exposure to phthalates to altered cognitive outcomes in their infants.
A team from (UNIGE) has discovered an RNA coding for a micro-peptide - a very small protein - that plays a crucial role in the competition between spermatozoa from different males of the Drosophila with which the female mates. In addition to shedding new light on this biological mechanism, this work highlights the importance of small peptides, a class of proteins that is now emerging as a key player in complex biological processes.
A University of Guam review of published research on the critically endangered Serianthes nelsonii tree has revealed a reason why the population of the trees continues to be endangered despite a long history of funded conservation projects and a national recovery plan implemented 26 years ago. The review article, co-authored by biologists of the Plant Physiology Laboratory of UOG's Western Pacific Tropical Research Center, was published on March 2 in Horticulturae journal.
Researchers from The University of Tokyo developed a novel device for the safe and effective transplantation of human pancreatic beta-cells in type I diabetes mellitus (T1D). By constructing a millimeter-thick graft encapsulating beta-cells and transplanting it in diabetic mice, they were able to show that the device was removable for up to 1 year and without a significant foreign body response. This study demonstrates a novel option for cell therapy for T1D.
A joint team of palaeontologists has now for the first time analysed bone structures in 400 million-year-old fossils of marine life at unprecedentedly high resolution and in 3D. To be able to view these structures, tomography experts at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) examined the samples under the focussed ion beam of a scanning electron microscope to calculate 3D images from the data, achieving resolutions in the nanometre range using technology that was initially developed to study battery corrosion.
It makes evolutionary sense for long-lived animals to have complex social relationships - such as friends and enemies - researchers say.