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How mercury gets into the sea

Chemical fingerprint reveals origin

04-Oct-2021

Mercury released into the atmosphere by industry enters the sea and from there makes its way into the food chain. Now, an analysis by the University of Basel has revealed how the harmful substance enters seawater in the first place. This is not primarily via rainfall, as previously assumed, but ...

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Spread of a novel SARS-CoV-2 variant across Europe in summer 2020

There is currently no evidence of this variant being more dangerous

30-Oct-2020

Researchers from Basel and Spain have identified a novel SARS-CoV-2 variant that has spread widely across Europe in recent months, according to an un-peer-reviewed preprint released this week. While there is no evidence of this variant being more dangerous, its spread may give insights into the ...

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An artificial cell on a chip

Efficient microfluidic technology produces tailor-made enzyme-loaded vesicles

29-Oct-2020

Researchers at the University of Basel have developed a precisely controllable system for mimicking biochemical reaction cascades in cells. Using microfluidic technology, they produce miniature polymeric reaction containers equipped with the desired properties. This “cell on a chip” is useful not ...

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A tiny instrument to measure the faintest magnetic fields

Applications in areas such as medicine, besides being used to research new materials

08-Sep-2020

Physicists at the University of Basel have developed a minuscule instrument able to detect extremely faint magnetic fields. At the heart of the superconducting quantum interference device are two atomically thin layers of graphene, which the researchers combined with boron nitride. Instruments ...

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Perturbation-free studies of single molecules

New applications in the fields of quantum science, spectroscopy and chemistry

16-Mar-2020

Researchers of the University of Basel have developed a new method with which individual isolated molecules can be studied precisely – without destroying the molecule or even influencing its quantum state. This highly sensitive technique for probing molecules is widely applicable and paves the ...

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Virtual screening for active substances against the coronavirus

11-Mar-2020

The University of Basel is part of the global search for a drug to fight the rampant coronavirus. Researchers in the Computational Pharmacy group have so far virtually tested almost 700 million substances, targeting a specific site on the virus – with the aim of inhibiting its multiplication. Due ...

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2D materials: arrangement of atoms measured in silicene

03-Jan-2020

Silicene consists of a single layer of silicon atoms. In contrast to the ultra-flat material graphene, which is made of carbon, silicene shows surface irregularities that influence its electronic properties. Now, physicists from the University of Basel have been able to precisely determine this ...

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Unique fingerprint: What makes nerve cells unmistakable?

12-Sep-2019

Protein variations that result from the process of alternative splicing control the identity and function of nerve cells in the brain. This allows organisms to build a highly complex neuronal network with only a limited number of genes. The study describing a detailed map of neuronal splicing ...

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Neuronal Parkinson inclusions are different than expected

Study raises new questions about the etiology of Parkinson’s disease

27-Jun-2019

An international team of researchers involving members of the University of Basel’s Biozentrum challenges the conventional understanding of the cause of Parkinson’s disease. The researchers have shown that the inclusions in the brain’s neurons, characteristic of Parkinson‘s disease, are comprised ...

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Learning from Nature’s Bounty: New Libraries for Drug discovery

12-Jun-2019

Natural products, or their close derivatives, make some of our most potent medicines, among which macrocycles with their large carbon-rich ring systems are one class. The size and complexity of macrocycles has made it difficult to emulate and build on Nature’s success in the laboratory. By ...

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