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Crystal study may resolve DNA mystery

Rice lab captures unseen details of replication, clues to how mutations can happen


When cells reproduce, the internal mechanisms that copy DNA get it right nearly every time. Rice University bioscientists have uncovered a tiny detail that helps understand how the process could go wrong. Their study of enzymes revealed the presence of a central metal ion critical toDNA ...


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New tool integrates microbiome and host genetic sequencing analysis

A new software tool makes it easier to study relationships between a host, its microbiome and pathogens like HIV or SARS-CoV-2


Researchers at Texas Biomedical Research Institute and Tulane University have developed a new software tool that makes it easier, faster and more cost effective to analyze genetic information about a host and its microbiome at the same time. The software, called “meta-transcriptome detector” ...


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Smartphone-powered microchip for at-home medical diagnostic testing developed

The new technology could make at-home diagnosis of diseases faster and more affordable: Researchers working with startup GRIP Molecular Technologies


A University of Minnesota Twin Cities research team has developed a new microfluidic chip for diagnosing diseases that uses a minimal number of components and can be powered wirelessly by a smartphone. The innovation opens the door for faster and more affordable at-home medical testing. The ...


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A sharper image for proteins

New technique promises to revolutionize the imaging of proteins and other vital biomolecules


Proteins may be the most important and varied biomolecules within living systems. These strings of amino acids, assuming complex 3-dimensional forms, are essential for the growth and maintenance of tissue, the initiation of thousands of biochemical reactions, and the protection of the body from ...


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Nanotechnology enables visualization of RNA structures at near-atomic resolution

Combination of nucleic acid nanotechnology and cryo-EM gives unprecedented insights into the structures of large and small RNAs


We live in a world made and run by RNA, the equally important sibling of the genetic molecule DNA. In fact, evolutionary biologists hypothesize that RNA existed and self-replicated even before the appearance of DNA and the proteins encoded by it. Fast forward to modern day humans: science has ...


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New technique shows in detail where drug molecules hit their targets in the body

The new method could speed the development of many new drugs


Scientists at Scripps Research have invented a way to image, across different tissues and with higher precision than ever before, where drugs bind to their targets in the body. The new method could become a routine tool in drug development. Described in a paper in Cell on April 27, 2022, the new ...


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Could the blueprint for life have been generated in asteroids?

“I was amazed that they had seen cytosine, which is very fragile”


Using new analyses, scientists have just found the last two of the five informational units of DNA and RNA that had yet to be discovered in samples from meteorites. While it is unlikely that DNA could be formed in a meteorite, this discovery demonstrates that these genetic parts are available for ...


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Researchers demonstrate label-free super-resolution microscopy

Imaging method measures particle size and position with nanometer precision


Researchers have developed a new measurement and imaging approach that can resolve nanostructures smaller than the diffraction limit of light without requiring any dyes or labels. The work represents an important advance toward a new and powerful microscopy method that could one day be used to ...


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Seeing more deeply into nanomaterials

New 3D imaging tool reveals engineered and self-assembled nanoparticle lattices with highest resolution yet


From designing new biomaterials to novel photonic devices, new materials built through a process called bottom-up nanofabrication, or self-assembly, are opening up pathways to new technologies with properties tuned at the nanoscale. However, to fully unlock the potential of these new materials, ...


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Scientists identify cancer biomarkers in breast milk

Proteins could one day allow breast cancer screening to be done with a blood test


A simple blood test for women of all ages and risk levels could one day be possible thanks to a new set of protein biomarkers that researchers identified using breast milk. “Although mammograms are a useful tool for catching breast cancer early, they aren’t typically recommended for low-risk ...


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