Is falling apart inevitable as we get older? Not for tiny aquatic animals called hydra, says a team led by Duke University aging researcher James Vaupel. Unlike us, hydra continue to survive and reproduce well into old age, the researchers find. The results are part of an eight-year study of more than 2,000 individuals at the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research.
Neurons from the retina of a rat form new branching sites and potential new connections with their neighbors (shown in yellow) under the influence of three large proteins isolated from cells of the human umbilical cord. These thrombospondin proteins come from the umbilical cells themselves, not cord blood. The lab of Cagla Eroglu in cell biology and neurobiology believes the molecules may have potential for treating degenerative eye diseases. Image credit: Sehwon Koh.
Only a few sessions of binge drinking during adolescence can knock out neurons (shown in blue arch) in the hippocampus, the brain’s memory core. New research in mice has also shown that teen binges can send astrocytes (shown in green) awry later in adulthood, potentially impairing the brain’s ability to form new synapses and heal itself from injury. In this split image, a normal mouse brain appears at left. On the right, a brain with stressed astrocytes after binges that would be the equivalent of a 0.15 blood alcohol level in humans.
To thrive in the high-temperature environment of a human host, the pathogenic fungus Cryptococcus neoformans depends largely on the Ras1 protein. Connie Nichols, a research scientist in the Andrew Alspaugh lab in Molecular Genetics and Microbiology fused fluorescent proteins from jellyfish to Ras1 (red) and to a protein that helps it survive on the cell membrane called Pfa4 (green). Yellow spots indicate the two proteins are joined.
DURHAM, N.C. – Scientists at Duke Medicine are using transparent fish to watch in real time as Cryptococcal meningitis takes over the brain. The resulting images are worthy of a sci-fi movie teaser, but could be valuable in disrupting the real, crippling brain infection that kills more than 600,000 people worldwide each year.
DURHAM, N.C. -- Many bugs that make us sick -- bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites -- hide out in our cells in protective little bubbles called vacuoles. To clear an infection, the immune system must recognize and destroy these vacuoles while leaving the rest of the living cell intact.
Now, researchers have discovered that our bodies mark pathogen-containing vacuoles for destruction by using a molecule called ubiquitin, commonly known as the “kiss of death.”
A colorful matrix produced by the Duke Center for In Vivo Microscopy, demonstrates the connectivity among different regions of the mouse brain. A logarithmic color scale shows blue pixels where connectivity between 148 anatomic regions of the mouse brain are relatively low and red shows where connectivity is relatively high. Center director G.
Most of the time in the global health research field, a long time has to pass before we see any tangible outcomes in people’s daily lives and health. Years can easily go by between the start of a research project, the fieldwork, the sampling, processing of samples, analyzing the data, writing and publishing until you see the real public health payoff.
A $20 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will help the Duke Global Health Institute (DGHI) educate a new generation of leaders and experts, and build research capacity from Durham to Delhi to address critical global health challenges.
DURHAM, NC - Looking around at a 20th high school reunion, you might notice something puzzling about your classmates. Although they were all born within months of each other, these 38-year-olds appear to be aging at different rates.
Indeed they are, say the leaders of a large long-term human health study in New Zealand that has sought clues to the aging process in young adults.