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Why some people with rheumatoid arthritis have pain without inflammation

Researchers have identified a suite of genes explaining the disconnect between diagnosis and symptom.

New technique sheds light on memory and learning

The findings may also have implications for learning and memory disorders, including Fragile X syndrome.

How one scientist's fascination with RNA changed medicine forever

Thomas Tuschl has devoted his career to making discoveries that bridge the gap between bench and business—and have resulted in entirely new classes of drugs.

Stem cell model offers first glimpse of early human development

The new platform’s ethically grounded approach promises to reveal much about how human embryos form during the earliest stages of pregnancy.

New Mtb study offers a novel paradigm for understanding bacterial transcription

A novel sequencing technique reveals a genetic trick TB may be using to evade the immune system and resist antibiotics.

A pioneering way to target the culprit behind a deadly liver cancer

Researchers have translated a cutting-edge tactic for treating genetic disorders into a fresh approach for potentially stymying cancer.  

Vitamin A may play a central role in stem cell biology and wound repair

Retinoic acid, the active state of Vitamin A, appears to regulate how stem cells enter and exit a transient state central to their role in wound repair.

New study on mating behaviors offers clues into the evolution of attraction

In examining the mating rituals of roundworms, researchers uncovered a unique approach to reproduction that maximizes genetic fitness.

Universal tool for tracking cell-to-cell interactions

uLIPSTIC, an updated method for directly observing physical interactions between cells, could allow scientists to one day map every possible cell interaction.

Innovative microscopy tech answers fundamental questions

A powerful tool captures data from an unprecedented 1 million neurons simultaneously, painting a much fuller picture of brain dynamics.

Rogue enzymes cause numerous diseases. A new method could help design drugs to treat them.

A novel platform allows researchers to directly target enzymes implicated in infectious diseases, several genetic disorders, and some cancers for the first time.

Double trouble at chromosome ends

The end replication problem dictates that telomeres shrink unless telomerase intervenes. But the problem is actually twice as complicated, with telomerase providing only part of the solution.

Cutting-edge methods yield surprising insights into Huntington’s disease

New findings add depth to our understanding of neurodegeneration.

Keeping telomerase in check

Telomerase could run amok, deleteriously capping damaged DNA, were it not for a first responder to DNA damage.

How fruit flies control the brain's "steering wheel"

A newly discovered neural circuit mediates between navigational brain cells, acting as a sort of mental steering wheel. 

Newly discovered genetic malfunction causes rare lung disease

The absence of a single immune cell receptor has been linked to both fewer defenses against mycobacterial infections, such as TB, and damaging buildup of sticky residue in the lungs.  

"Exhausted" immune cells may drive Alzheimer's

A class of ineffective immune cells may be driving Alzheimer’s disease, a finding that could both explain why APOE4 gene increases the risk of the disease and why a new drug can impact it.

Revealing how an ancient genetic invader inhabits our DNA

LINE-1 is associated with disease and aging. The Rout lab has uncloaked the core of its key protein, pointing the way towards therapeutic targets.

A CRISPR pioneer looks back as the first gene-editing therapy is approved

Luciano Marraffini’s research helped lay the groundwork for the newly FDA-approved CRISPR-based therapy for sickle cell anemia. He reflects on how we got here—and where the science is going next.

Innovative method identifies rare brain cell types for the first time

It also reduces the cost of a million single-cell transcriptomes from $10,000 to $700—and the time necessary down to about a day.

A new way of thinking about how organ architecture develops 

By focusing on the emergent features of cell collectives, instead of individual cells, scientists forge a new path for understanding how organs develop their architecture.   

Intriguing science discoveries of 2023

From plumbing the depths of wound repair to tackling how songbirds solve problems, here are some fascinating discoveries that came out of Rockefeller in 2023.

How bacteria recognize viral invasion and activate immune defenses

Bacteria have an array of strategies to counter viral invasion, but how they first spot a stranger in their midst has long been a mystery.

How the antioxidant glutathione keeps mitochondria healthy

“I believe this is going to be a very fruitful find. Every time people have studied nutrient sensing, we’ve learned a lot about biology, and many drugs have been developed as a result.”

New blood test could offer earlier detection of common deadly cancers

The low-cost multi-cancer detector can pick up the presence of a telltale protein in a tiny amount of blood in less than two hours.

The bacteria that may trigger multiple sclerosis

New research suggests that the long sought-after environmental trigger for MS is a toxin produced by certain C. perfringens bacteria.

Toward a universal dengue vaccine

Why do our bodies not only fail to learn from prior dengue infection but also become more vulnerable to it as a result? New research pinpoints a subgroup of antibodies that may be to blame.

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Community-developed guidelines for publishing images help address reproducibility problem in science

The use of images in scientific papers is more popular than ever, but there have been no common standards for their publication—until now.

New method tracks how brain cells age

The novel technique may offer panoramic view into the mechanisms of many diseases and the enigma of aging.

Vocal learning linked to problem solving skills and brain size

The better a songbird is at working its way around obstacles to retrieve a snack, the more complex its vocal learning ability will be.

Unlocking how the new Alzheimer’s drug lecanemab works

As with many cutting-edge therapies, we know more about the drug's effectiveness than we do about how it actually operates. A new study reveals a possible mechanism for its impact on patients.

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Boosters are key to protecting pregnant individuals and newborns against the worst effects of COVID

Patients with a specific cocktail of COVID exposure had the highest level of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 and its variants, which also provided a strong immunological shield for their babies.

Researchers find an epigenetic key that unlocks common deadly cancers

In skin, some aberrant adult epidermal stem cells turn on SOX9, kickstarting a process that ultimately activates cancer genes.

An immune flaw may cause West Nile virus’s deadliest symptoms

With 40% of encephalitis cases now explained by an autoimmune deficiency, West Nile virus "is by far the best understood human infectious disease in the world. It’s stunning.”

How one of nature's most fundamental molecules forms

New high-resolution images of the large ribosomal subunit shed light on how human ribosomes are assembled.

Researchers discover neuronal mechanism linked to a minutes-long decision process in fruit flies

They identified a brain signal that guides one type of decision-making—findings that could build a foundation for understanding how humans make educated and strategic decisions.

The potential molecular indicators of Parkinson’s symptoms

Overlapping RNA changes in the blood and brain were associated with many of the clinical signs of the disease.

Proteome of rare liver cancer sheds new light on basic biology

Fibrolamellar carcinoma not only hinders the body's ammonia consumption but also produces ammonia, a finding with sweeping implications for treating this cancer—and the study of ammonia metabolism.

World’s first transgenic ants reveal how colonies respond to an alarm

The findings raise tantalizing possibilities for revealing what hundreds of ant odorant receptors are up to.

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New algorithm cleans microbiome data with unprecedented efficiency

The algorithm, dubbed SCRuB, can distinguish native bacteria and viruses from contaminants—a powerful tool for researchers working with the microbiome.

Lab-grown mini lungs could accelerate the study of respiratory diseases  

The labs of Ali Brivanlou and Charles M. Rice collaborated to refine a cell culture technology platform that grows genetically identical lung buds from human embryonic stem cells.

The clearest snapshot of human genomic diversity ever taken

The human reference genome has always been a remarkable but flawed tool. A new "pangenome" aims to correct its oversights and omissions.

Behind the formation and protection of microtubules

Research shed light on the process by which the γ-Tubulin Ring Complex stabilizes microtubules, which may inform the study of developmental diseases and cancers.

Solving the mystery behind how nutrients enter cells

A new paper describes how choline is transported into the cell, with potentially sweeping implications for the study of rare diseases.

Researchers reveal an ancient mechanism for wound repair

The study is the first to identify a damage response pathway that is distinct from but parallel to the classical pathway triggered by pathogens.

Gum disease may lie at the root of some arthritis flare-ups

Damaged gums may release bacteria into the bloodstream that trigger arthritis flare-ups, potentially explaining why people with gum disease don't respond as well to arthritis treatments.

New tool to study hepatitis B could open the door to a cure

Just as the Rice lab’s work on HCV exposed that virus’s weaknesses, the hope is that this novel approach could do the same for HBV.

Scientists discover brain region linking short-term to long-term memory

The anterior thalamus plays such a key role in memory that boosting it in mice consolidates the animals' trivial experiences into long-term memories.

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New technique captures unprecedented view of the active brain

The tech, dubbed MesoLF, captures 10,500 neurons buried at once-inaccessible depths, firing from brain regions many millimeters apart, simultaneously—all with unprecedented resolution.

Innovative approach opens the door to COVID nanobody therapies

The relatively simple and low-cost procedure could empower laboratories in low-resource areas to generate nanobodies against SARS-CoV-2, as well as other viruses.

Illuminating the evolution of social parasite ants

The findings offer a new way to understand how some ants become total layabouts.

Homing in on the genetics of severe COVID in children

A trio of faulty genes fail to put the brakes on the immune system’s all-out assault on SARS-CoV-2, leading to the inflammatory overload characteristic of MIS-C.

The nutrient that cancer cells crave

Starving cancer cells of a key amino acid could potentially render tumors more vulnerable to the body’s natural immune response.

A unique window into "original antigenic sin"

The body's first blush with a pathogen shapes how it will respond to vaccines. New evidence clarifies how this phenomenon works, mechanistically.

How the body's B cell academy ensures a diverse immune response

A diverse immune response hinges on naive B cells mingling with high affinity ones in the late-stage germinal center. Whether that helps or hinders, however, depends on the virus.

Why older fathers pass on more genetic mutations to their offspring

It's not just the number of mutations that matters. It's the failure to fix them too.

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Solving a crucial bottleneck in drug discovery

A novel method reduces the time required to identify novel antibiotic-producing DNA from weeks to days.

When the body's B cell training grounds stay open after hours

While most germinal centers shut down after a few weeks, some stay in business for more than six months. A new study helps explain why.

Intriguing science discoveries of 2022

Breakthroughs in genetics, biochemistry, neuroscience, infectious disease, and drug development were a few of the year's highlights.

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How a cell's mitochondria make their own protein factories

The findings shed a rare light on mitoribosomes, the unique ribosomes found within the cell's mitochondria.
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