Chronological Age vs Biological Age: Can Aging be Reversed?
What can biological age tell us about our health? Is it a fixed number, or can it be reduced? A recent study from Poganik et al. investigates the fluctuations in biological age in response to physiological stress.
How High-Impact Sports Affect Brain Health: Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE)
Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) is a condition that arises from repeated head traumas, and can only be diagnosed after death. Learn more about the history behind this condition, current research, and potential ways to prevent CTE in this blog post, written by one of the Scientist.com STEM NIL Scholarship Winners.
CBD’s Potential as an Anti-Cancer Agent
Chemotherapy treatment is incredibly difficult on patient wellbeing, but an unlikely plant-derived substance may yet improve the adverse side effects. In this blog, we discuss the use of CBD as a treatment for side effects like organ damage and drug resistance in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy.
Can the Immune System Protect after Repeated Myocardial Injury?
While the immune response to a single cardiac event has been well researched, few have reported on whether an adaptive immunity is observed after repeated cardiac injury. Here, we discuss a recent publication from Tiwary et al., in which they investigate the cytoprotective response after multiple cardiomyopathic injuries.
From Trauma to Binge Eating: How Early Life Experiences Impact the Leptin System
Early life trauma (ELT) has been identified as a risk factor for binge eating and obesity in adult life, but the neural mechanisms behind this phenomena have yet to be determined. In this blog post we discuss a recent publication from Shin et al., which delineates the circuitry of this ELT-induced maladaptive eating.
A Breath of Not-So-Fresh Air: the Combined Effects of Air and Noise Pollution
While air and noise pollution have been well documented independently, their combined effects are insufficiently discussed, until recently. In this blog post, we discuss a recent publication from Kuntic et al. on the combined and individual effects of these pollutants in mice.
Cancer Immunotherapy: Viruses, Vaccines, and other Immuno-Oncology Treatments
In this blog post, current cancer immunotherapy treatments are discussed, as well as some future directions for this rapidly developing field.
Celebrating Black Scientists: 5 Scientific Stories from the Past
In honor of Black History Month, this blog discusses 5 scientific stories from some historic Black and African-American scientists, researchers, and medical professionals.
Protocol Preview: Long-read sequencing, Nature’s Method of the Year
Nature Methods declared "Long-Read Sequencing" their Method of the Year for 2022, but what exactly makes this technique worthy of such a title?
The Blues & the Browns: Links between Depression and Gut Microbiota
Recently, Radjabzadeh et al., identified 13 genera of gut microbiota that have been implicated with symptoms of depression.
Brain-Derived Tau in Blood: the Future of Alzheimer’s Disease Diagnosis?
Recently published in Brain, Gonzalez-Ortiz et al. report the design and development of a novel blood-based biomarker specific to brain-derived tau. In this blog post, we dive into the advantages of their novel immunoassay over those that are commercially available, as well as its future implications for Alzheimer’s disease diagnosis.
Protocol Preview: In Vivo Gene Therapy Using Peptide-Based Delivery
Although gene therapy has been in discussion for decades, its translation to clinical practice has been a slow and challenging process. As a solution to this translational challenge, Allen et al. have proposed a peptide-based delivery method of Cre recombinase for in vivo gene therapy, which we review in this blog post.
Novel Targets for Alzheimer’s Disease Treatment: Medin and PLD3
Given that Alzheimer's disease is multifactorial and heterogenous, drug development progress is more likely to occur if multiple pathways are considered. Two recent Nature publications have potentially identified medin and PLD3 as new targets for Alzheimer’s disease treatment, which we summarize in this mini-review.
A Novel Ingestible Biosensor for Intestinal Metabolite Monitoring
De la Paz et al. have developed an ingestible, self-powered, and wireless biosensing capsule that can hopefully be used for the noninvasive diagnosis of gastrointestinal disorders in the future. Recently published in Nature Communications, the authors demonstrated how its real-time performance in a porcine model, which we summarize in this post.
Particulate Matter from Firearms: Lung Toxicity and Respiratory Effects
While health and safety precautions are rightly focused on preventing shooting-related injury and death at firing ranges, heavy metal exposure also poses substantial health risks. Kim et al. recently modeled the acute health effects of particulate matter inhalation from firearm smoke in mice, which we review in this post.
Protocol Preview: a Ferret Model of Respiratory Inflammation
While rodents have long been used to model many human diseases, their anatomical, physiological, and immunological differences from humans cannot be ignored when modeling respiratory inflammation. Recently, Khoury et al. demonstrated how ferrets can be used to model inflammatory respiratory disease and injury, which we review in this blog post.
Are They Born This Way? Beat Synchronization in Rats in Response to Lady Gaga, Mozart, and More
Recently, Ito et al. sought to understand beat synchronization in rats and how it compares to humans, which has not been reported to date. In this blog post, we review their findings and how they contribute to our understanding of cross-species beat synchronization.
Orphan Receptor GPR55: A New Therapeutic Target for Atherosclerosis?
Since the role of GPR55 in adaptive B cell response regulation has not yet been reported in the context of atherosclerosis, Guillamat-Prats et al. have investigated how GPR55 in B cells affects atherosclerosis development. In this blog post, we highlight the main findings from this study, which was published this month in Nature Cardiovascular Research.
Is DNA Vaccination the Future of Type 1 Diabetes Prevention and Management?
Given the fact that type 1 diabetes can vary considerably between individuals, a precision medicine-based therapeutic approach could revolutionize clinical care. Earlier this year, Postigo-Fernandez et al. evaluated a precision medicine approach to DNA vaccination in a mouse model of type 1 diabetes, which we review in this blog post.
Sugar, Spice, and a Troubling Vice: Cardiovascular and Cancer Risk with Artificial Sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners appear to be the perfect solution to many of the health problems associated with high sugar consumption, but two recent publications may change the public's opinion on these sugar substitutes.
Clearing the Brain Fog: Long COVID and Cognitive Impairment
One common post-COVID symptom is brain fog or "COVID fog," which may affect up to 25% of recovered individuals. Given the global prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 and the detrimental impact of such cognitive impairment, the public health implications are considerable. Fernández-Castañeda et al. recently examined the underlying neurological changes associated with COVID fog, which we review in this blog post.
Fright or Delight? Dopamine-Mediated Fear Response in the Amygdala
Since little is known about how dopamine affects aversive learning in humans, Frick et al. recently sought to describe the role of dopamine in fear memory formation within the human amygdala, which we review in this blog post.
Protocol Preview: Creating an Artificial Human Thymus in Mice
The majority of treatments for immunodeficiencies are temporary fixes, in part due to a lack of preclinical models that can accurately predict immune responses in humans. However, a novel model recently published in Nature Methods has potential to greatly improve future immune response studies, which we review in this blog post.
The Cancer-Immunity Cycle: Research Solutions for Preclinical Immuno-Oncology
Cancer immunotherapy has undoubtedly expanded the cancer treatment landscape and improved patient outlook, which can in part be attributed to the recognition of the importance of the cancer-immunity cycle as a whole. In this blog, we provide an overview of the cancer-immunity cycle and highlight some preclinical models that can facilitate cancer immunotherapy research.
Passive Avoidance Response in Rats: Effects of Handling and Novel Object Recognition
Storing aversive memories is important to survival, but learned avoidance responses decrease over time without reinforcement. Since little is known about the mechanisms behind this process, Bengoetxea de Tena et al. evaluated how naive rats respond to a learning and memory task under fear conditions in a recently published study, which we review in this blog post.