Human glioblastoma multiforme, one of the most common, aggressive and deadly forms of brain cancer, is notoriously difficult to study. Now a team of engineers has developed a three-dimensional hydrogel that more closely mimics conditions in the brain than other platforms used to study brain cancer. In a paper in the journal Biomaterials, the researchers describe the new material and their approach, which allows them to selectively tune up or down the malignancy of the cancer cells they study.
Novel microchips imitate the brain's information processing in real time. Neuroinformatics researchers demonstrate how complex cognitive abilities can be incorporated into electronic systems made with so-called neuromorphic chips: They show how to assemble and configure these electronic systems to function in a way similar to an actual brain.
Scientists at EPFL have developed a quick and simple method for connecting and assembling new molecules together, paving a new road for synthetic chemistry, material science, chemical biology, and even drug discovery.
Hair loss is a common disorder that affects many men and women due to aging or medical conditions. Current FDA-approved drugs can minimize further hair loss but are unable to regrow new hair. The Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (IBN) has recently engineered a new hair follicle model that could help discover new drugs for hair regeneration.
Biologists at the Caltech have worked out the details of a mechanism that leads undifferentiated blood stem cells to become macrophages - immune cells that attack bacteria and other foreign pathogens. The process involves an unexpected cycle in which cell division slows, leading to an increased accumulation of a particular regulatory protein that in turn slows cell division further. The finding provides new insight into how stem cells are guided to generate one cell type as opposed to another.
Researchers have refined a new microscopy imaging method to visualize exactly how the endoplasmic reticulum sheets are stacked, revealing that the 3D structure of the sheets resembles a parking garage with helical ramps connecting the different levels.
Researchers at the University of Basel have developed a live-cell fluorescent labeling that makes bacterial cell-to-cell communication pathways visible. The communication between bacterial cells is essential in the regulation of processes within bacterial populations, such as biofilm development.