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Novel Therapeutic Target Revealed in Lung Squamous Cell Cancer

Lung squamous carcinoma (LUSC) is a highly metastatic disease with a poor prognosis. Now, researchers at UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center report they have discovered a circular RNA known as CDR1as which can potentially be a new therapeutic target in LUSC.

Regulatory RNA Control with Light

Researchers at the Universities of Bonn and Bayreuth in Germany have developed a much more specific optical switch that makes it possible to control the lifespan of regulatory RNA molecules precisely. This novel approach could easily allow for regulating micro RNAs and short hairpin RNAs in a spatiotemporally precise manner.

Dangerous E. coli Strain Reveals Potential New Drug Target

Enterohemorrhagic  E. coli (EHEC) is a food-borne pathogen that releases Shiga toxins during infection, resulting in kidney and neurological damage. Now, researchers from the University of New South Wales say they discovered a new molecular pathway that controls Shiga toxin production. Their discovery of the new pathway is the first in over 20 years.

Genome of Fleming’s Original Penicillium Strain Could Point to New Routes for Industrial Manufacture

U.K. researchers sequenced Alexander Fleming’s original Penicillium mold, and compared key genes with those of two U.S. strains used industrially to produce penicillin today. They found that the genes coding for penicillin-producing enzymes differed between the U.S. Penicillium strains and Fleming’s strain in the U.K., although the regulatory genes that control enzyme production had the same genetic code, with the U.S. strains producing more copies, which boosts antibiotic production.

Scientists Build Most Extensive Cell Atlas of the Human Heart

Scientists analyzed almost a half million individual cells to build the most extensive cell atlas of the healthy human heart to date. Using state-of-the-art analyses of large-scale single-cell and nuclei transcriptomes, they characterized six anatomical adult heart regions.

Blueberry Compound May Provide New Inflammatory Bowel Disease Therapy

Scientists from the Tokyo University of Science are confident that their findings opened the door to new therapeutic possibilities for the treatment of not just Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) but also other inflammatory disorders. Their findings showed that PSB possesses a strong immunosuppressive property, paving the way for a new, natural treatment for IBD.

Bloomington Biomanufacturing Tech Apprenticeships

The program could serve as a model for other cities across the country to help residents gain good job skills.

Novel Tech Approaches for Analyzing Aggregation

Scientists are advised to invest in tailoring predictive modeling and analytical methods to a given protein biotherapeutic.

BioCanRx Invests C$10 Million in Cancer Immunotherapy Research and Biomanufacturing

The goal of the funding is to help to bridge research gap between lab discoveries and clinical trials.

Data Management in the DNA of New Gene Therapy Plant

Catalent’s third gene therapy facility at Harmans, MD, will use a sophisticated infrastructure that is able to gather, manage, and analyze data across all operations.

Personalized Medicine Manufacturing Needs “Debugging Tools”

Machine learning/AI and automation can help researchers and manufacturers identify where a problem lies.

Almac Group Expands Analytical Solutions to Include Biologics Testing

Almac Sciences, a member of the Almac Group, has expanded its suite of analytical solutions to include biologics testing solutions. Services will now include GMP lot release and stability services to support clients’ drug substance and drug product programs for both novel biologics and biosimilars; fit-for-purpose analytical method development/phase-appropriate method validation; as well as raw material testing for microbial and mammalian expression systems that comply with pharmacopeial requirements and clients’ specifications.

LEGO-Like Approach to Redesigning Existing Antibiotics Thwarts Drug Resistance

Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, developed an approach to tackling antibiotic resistance that effectively redesigns existing antibiotic molecules so that they can evade bacterial resistance mechanisms. They say the aim is to revive classes of drugs that haven't been able to achieve their full potential, especially those that have already been shown to be safe in humans.

Over a Hundred Genes Found to Aid Cancer Evade the Immune System

Scientists from the University of Toronto (UofT) have recently identified 182 genes that allow cancer cells to avoid getting killed by the immune system. Many of genes found had no previous links to immune evasion. Their findings demonstrate the need of new therapies that target the genetic composition of tumors due to cancer-resistant mutations. 

Gut Microbiome Altered by Sleep Apnea

One of the more exciting aspects of microbiome research is how gut microbes can have an impact on neurological events. One recent example is a study from investigators at the University of Missouri (MU) School of Medicine, and MU Health Care who found that obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) related sleep disturbances affect the gut microbiome in mice and how transplanting those gut bacteria into other mice can cause changes to sleep patterns in the recipient mice.

First High Resolution Map of Contact Points Between Replicated Chromosomes

Researchers describe a Hi-C-based method—sister-chromatid-sensitive Hi-C (scsHi-C)—that led to the first high resolution map of contact points between replicated chromosomes. Uncovering the molecular machinery regulating the conformation of sister chromatids will provide insights into DNA repair and the formation of rod-shaped chromosomes in dividing cells.

The Life and Times of Rosalind Franklin

In this webinar—the first in a “Women in Science” series co-hosted by GEN and the Rosalind Franklin Society—British biologist and author Dr. Matthew Cobb explores Franklin’s contribution to DNA structure and how they have been seen in popular culture. He will equally focus on the other periods in her life, highlighting the insights they provide us into the mind of one of the 20th century’s greatest scientists, one who would have celebrated her hundredth birthday this year.

J&J’s Janssen Launches Up-to-60,000-Patient Phase III Trial for COVID-19 Vaccine

JNJ-78436735—also called Ad26.COV2.S—is under study in the Phase III ENSEMBLE trial (NCT04505722). ENSEMBLE’s primary outcome measure is the number of participants with first occurrence of molecularly confirmed moderate to severe/critical COVID-19 with seronegative status up to 2.1 years following injection.

3D Printed Kidneys Included in CollPlant and United Therapeutics’ Expanded Collaboration

Kidney transplants are life saving, yet they are limited. Approximately 90,000 people in the United States are waiting for kidney transplants, and a new person is added to the list every ten minutes. CollPlant Biotechnologies and United Therapeutics have announced an expansion to their collaboration to include 3D bioprinting human kidneys to reduce global organ shortages of kidney transplants.

Lupus Patients Treated Successfully with mAb Targeting Plasma Cells

A team of scientists from Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin and the Deutsches Rheuma-Forschungszentrum (DRFZ) Berlin, a Leibniz Institute, report that they have successfully treated two patients with the autoimmune disease systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). The promising results seen in SLE may be transferable to other autoimmune diseases in which autoantibodies play a role.

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