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Individual impurity atoms detectable in graphene

17-Apr-2018

A team including physicists from the University of Basel has succeeded in using atomic force microscopy to clearly obtain images of individual impurity atoms in graphene ribbons. Thanks to the forces measured in the graphene’s two-dimensional carbon lattice, they were able to identify boron and ...

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Faster characterization of organic salts

27-Mar-2018

UZH researchers have developed a novel method that speeds up the process of determining crystal structures of organic salts and significantly reduces the effort required to do so. As about 40 percent of all active pharmaceutical ingredients are salts, this new crystallographic method is set to ...

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Recovery from spinal cord injuries can be predicted

09-Mar-2018

A trauma to the spinal cord, quickly leads to a progressive loss of nerve tissue. This not only affects the injured area, but over time affects also other parts of the spinal cord and even the brain. These neurodegenerative changes can be explored in detail using magnetic resonance imaging. An ...

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New tool for structural biology

New method of crystallising large membrane proteins

08-Mar-2018

ETH researchers have developed a new method of crystallising large membrane proteins in order to determine their structure. This will be of benefit to biological research and the pharmaceutical industry. Membrane-embedded proteins are an essential part of cells and any form of life. They not only ...

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Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

12-Feb-2018

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life. The generation of new nerve cells was once ...

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Sticking sugar to protein

Researchers clarified the 3D structure of an important enzyme that links sugar to proteins – a breakthrough

09-Feb-2018

Whenever cells receive signals, interact with other cells or identify viruses and bacteria, the process involves not only proteins but also sugar chains attached to their surface. The subject of relatively little attention until now, these structures differ widely in composition and branching, ...

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Lab-on-a-chip for tracking single bacterial cells

02-Feb-2018

Researchers at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel, together with researchers from the Max Planck Institute in Dresden, have set up a novel lab-on-a-chip with accompanying automatic analysis software. As they report in Nature Communications, this integrated setup can be used to study gene ...

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Measuring molecular interactions

Previously unknown interactions between proteins and small metabolic molecules discovered

02-Feb-2018

ETH researchers have used a new approach to discover previously unknown interactions between proteins and small metabolic molecules in bacterial cells. The technique can also be used to test the effect of medications. Science now has a new “omics” – an interactomics, which deals with the ...

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The first precise measurement of a single molecule's effective charge

Discovery could pave the way to new diagnostic tools

16-Jan-2018

For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics. Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to ...

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Extremely bright and fast light emission

12-Jan-2018

An international team of researchers from ETH Zurich, IBM Research Zurich, Empa and four American research institutions have found the explanation for why a class of nanocrystals that has been intensively studied in recent years shines in such incredibly bright colours. The nanocrystals contain ...

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