Nanoparticles carry drugs into cells; new gene signature for metastasis; cancer researchers call for new funds

Nanotechnology

Researchers at MIT have been designing new nanoparticles that can be used to transport therapeutics through the cell membrane barrier. Article

Evidence that shows carbon nanotubes cause the same physical havoc as asbestos is raising an alarm over the potential health threats raised by a new generation of nanomaterials. Report

Stem Cell Research

Brazil's Supreme Court has approved embryonic stem cell research, which is likely to spur new funds for the field. Story

Researchers at Johns Hopkins have established a human cell-based system for studying sickle cell anemia by reprogramming somatic cells to an embryonic stem cell like state. Release

Genetics

U.S. researchers have identified a gene signature responsible for the spread of cancer from one organ to another, a process scientifically known as metastasis. Release

Focusing on two large families with a history of late-onset Alzheimer's, scientists have discovered a gene that plays a key role in the disease. Story

Scans of the genome of patients with schizophrenia have revealed rare spontaneous copy number mutations that account for at least 10 percent of the non-familial cases of the disease. Release

Research by Gu Zhu, M.D., and colleagues supports the theory that the refractive errors known as nearsightedness and farsightedness are primarily inherited. The group also identified the probable location---on the long arm of chromosome 5---of genes that help determine axial length, a key factor in these refractive errors. Release

A variant of the NQO1 gene has been linked to poor survival rates among women with breast cancer who receive a common chemotherapy. Report

Carriers of a common genetic disorder previously linked to lung disease may have a 70-percent to 100-percent increased risk of lung cancer, according to a report in the May 26 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine. Release

Cancer Research

Researchers gathering for the annual ASCO meeting used the forum on new therapies to highlight the need for more funds. "As a nation we face two critical challenges to advancing cancer care--stalled federal funding for cancer research and limited access to high quality cancer care," said Julie Gralow, associate professor of medicine at the University of Washington. Report

New genetic research is revolutionizing the way cancer drugs will be prescribed in the future, and that's having a big impact on development companies in the field. Report

More Research

In a first, scientists were able to watch as molecules assembled to form a particle of HIV. The work helps shed light on how the virus is created and also how researchers can study other viruses as well. Article

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