Genes & Cells

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Bacteroides fragilis and intestinal cells

MESSAGE RECEIVED  A microbe called Bacteroides fragilis (left image, boxed) sends out messages that calm the immune system, quelling inflammation in mouse intestinal cells (left, bottom half). These messages rest in pouches called outer membrane vesicles (yellow bubbles in reconstruction of microbe at right). Defective genes linked to Crohn’s disease might make it hard for people to get such messages.

labrador looking at a treat

A gene variant associated with increased body weight and eating behavior is more common in Labrador retrievers than in other breeds, a new study finds. 

selection of cheeses

SAY CHEESE Fungi and bacteria shape the distinctive characters of a wide range of cheeses.

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