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  • Science Ticker

    CDC issues travel guidelines for pregnant women

    Pregnant women should consider postponing travel to much of Latin America and the Caribbean. That’s the advice issued January 15 by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.

    The goal is to prevent women from catching Zika virus, a mysterious mosquito-borne virus that has spread rapidly across Brazil in the last nine months. The number of infected people could be...

    01/15/2016 - 20:48 Health, Development
  • News in Brief

    Playful pups conceived via in vitro fertilization for the first time

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    Test tube puppies have arrived.

    For the first time, a dog has given birth to a litter of puppies conceived by in vitro fertilization, scientists report December 9 in PLOS ONE.

    The success could make it easier for wildlife conservationists to help such endangered species as the African painted dog or the Ethiopian wolf, says study coauthor Alexander Travis, a...

    12/09/2015 - 14:00 Animals, Development
  • News

    Old stem cell barriers fade away

    Breaking down barriers usually sounds like a good thing, but not for aging stem cells.

    When young brain stem cells split in two, they can wall off damaged proteins in one daughter cell, leaving the other spry and ready to divide again, researchers report in the Sept. 18 Science. With age, the barrier sequestering the damaged proteins breaks down, spilling cellular garbage into both cells...

    09/17/2015 - 14:00 Cells, Development
  • News

    Small number of genes trigger embryo development

    In the first days after an egg is fertilized, throwing a few key genetic switches revs up human embryo development, two new studies suggest.

    That ignition pattern differs from the one that fires up early mouse embryos, the research finds.

    One study, to be published online September 11 in Nature Communications, found that a much smaller number of genes than previously believed serve...

    09/08/2015 - 17:00 Development, Genetics
  • Science Ticker

    Source of liver’s ability to regenerate found

    Scientists have identified the stem cells behind the liver’s legendary ability to replenish its tissue.

    Stem cells not only bolster their own numbers but also become other kinds of cells through a process called differentiation, thereby keeping an organ populated as mature cells die off. The stem cells underpinning this process in the liver had never been identified.

    To trace the...

    08/06/2015 - 10:38 Cells, Development
  • News

    Mutation-disease link masked in zebrafish

    Zebrafish can find a way to compensate for a mutated gene, but artificial methods of inactivating the same gene are not so readily overcome, a new study suggests.

    These findings, reported July 13 in Nature, add fuel to a technical debate among researchers about how to tell what a gene does in an organism.

    An organism’s alternate strategy to compensate for a mutated gene can mask...

    07/13/2015 - 11:00 Genetics, Development
  • Science Visualized

    Twisty chains of proteins keep cells oriented

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    Fibers composed of a protein called actin are responsible for human cells’ ability to tell right from left, researchers report in the April Nature Cell Biology. These twisty fibers (below, in yellow; cell’s nucleus in magenta) are part of a cell’s internal scaffolding known as the cytoskeleton. Among other functions, the fibers help cells migrate from one part of a...

    06/16/2015 - 08:00 Cells, Development
  • Say What?

    Whether froglets switch sexes distinguishes ‘sex races’

    Sex races\SEHKS REHY-sez\ pl. n.

    Groups of organisms within a single species that differ dramatically in how gonads develop.

    The best-studied examples are the three sex races of Rana temporaria frogs, a species found from Spain to Norway. In the milder southern climates, virtually all new froglets emerge from tadpolehood with ovaries. Only later do about half of them replace their ovaries...

    04/21/2015 - 08:00 Animals, Genetics, Development
  • News

    Fracking chemicals can alter mouse development

    DENVER — Wastewater from hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, may tote several hormone-disrupting chemicals that can alter the development of mice, researchers reported March 23 at the national meeting of the American Chemical Society.

    Twenty-three chemicals used in fracking fluids can hamper at least one of five hormone signals tested in human cells, the researchers found. When the team...

    03/30/2015 - 13:45 Toxicology, Development
  • News in Brief

    Images reveal secrets of zinc sparks

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    When egg meets sperm in mammals, zinc sparks fly. These sparks are created when billions of zinc atoms shoot from thousands of small pouches nestled just beneath the surface of a mouse egg cell, researchers from Northwestern University and Argonne National Laboratory report December 15 in Nature Chemistry. The team used detailed imaging and mapping techniques to capture...

    12/15/2014 - 18:08 Cells, Development