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Experimental vaccine may reduce post-stroke blood clot risk

A vaccine may one day be able to replace oral blood thinners to reduce the risk of secondary strokes caused by blood clots, without increasing the risk of serious bleeding or triggering an autoimmune response. People who have had a stroke caused by a blood clot (ischemic strokes) often need to take medications that make…

How sleeping mammary stem cells are awakened in puberty

Walter and Eliza Hall Institute researchers have discovered how the growth of milk-producing mammary glands is triggered during puberty. Sleeping stem cells in the mammary gland are awoken by a protein dubbed FoxP1. The research expands our knowledge of how the mammary gland — a component of the human breast — develops from stem cells,…

Astronomers witness slow death of nearby galaxy

Astronomers from The Australian National University (ANU) and CSIRO have witnessed, in the finest detail ever, the slow death of a neighbouring dwarf galaxy, which is gradually losing its power to form stars. The new peer-reviewed study of the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC), which is a tiny fraction of the size and mass of the…

Sweet discovery pushes back the origins of chocolate

As Halloween revelers prepare to feast on chocolate, a new study from an international team of researchers, including the University of British Columbia, is pushing back the origins of the delicious sweet treat. The study, suggests that cacao — the plant from which chocolate is made — was domesticated, or grown by people for food,…

Tampering with cellular fats holds great promise

Much of the biology underlying cells’ compositions of lipids is a black box to scientists. Even though lipids are a major group of biomolecules, they are difficult to study because their synthesis is regulated by complicated metabolism. Now have found a way to engineer the fatty membranes of cells. The researchers boosted the cells’ ability…

Birds startled by moving sticks

Do animals — like humans — divide the world into things that move and things that don’t? Are they surprised if an apparently inanimate object jumps to life? The researchers tested how jackdaws responded to moving birds, moving snakes and moving sticks — and found they were most cautious of the moving sticks. The study,…

The ghost of Cassiopeia

About 550 light-years away in the constellation of Cassiopeia lies IC 63, a stunning and slightly eerie nebula. Also known as the ghost of Cassiopeia, IC 63 is being shaped by radiation from a nearby unpredictably variable star, Gamma Cassiopeiae, which is slowly eroding away the ghostly cloud of dust and gas. This celestial ghost…

‘Gut-on-a-chip’ system shows intestinal barrier disruption is the onset initiator of gut inflammation

The first study investigating the mechanism of how a disease develops using human organ-on-a-chip technology has been successfully completed by engineers at The University of Texas at Austin. Researchers from the Cockrell School of Engineering were able to shed light on a part of the human body — the digestive system — where many questions…

Vast leukemia dataset could help researchers match therapies to patients

After years of work, researchers are releasing a massive dataset detailing the molecular makeup of tumor cells from more than 500 patients with an aggressive blood cancer called acute myeloid leukemia (AML). The dataset includes how hundreds of individual patients’ cells responded to a broad panel of drugs in laboratory screens. Using a new online…

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