Medicine

Life Lines

Category archives for Medicine

Experimental Biology – Sunday

The Comparative and Evolutionary Physiology section held their Scholander Poster competition for young comparative physiologists today! It was exciting to see all of the students present their work. Here are some of the highlights: Raffaele Pilla, Dominic P, D’Agostino, Carol S. Landon, and Jay B. Dean from Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL.…

As always, the opening ceremony for the American Physiological Society at the Experimental Biology meeting was awesome! The food was probably the best I have had at these meetings, which along with the fun band, probably explains why it was jam-packed with Physiologists eager to kick-start this meeting. I am looking forward to the Scholander…

Jell-O Brains

I have to admit I love the science section of The New York Times. The topic today: Dr. Karl Deisseroth and colleagues at Stanford University have developed a technique called CLARITY that uses hydrogel to make the brain look like it is made of Jell-O. They have successfully applied this technique to a whole mouse brain as well as part of…

    With an estimated 6.7 million bat deaths related to white nose syndrome, understanding this devastating disease is more important than ever.  Wildlife Pathologist Carol Meteyer, from the USGS National Wildlife Health Center, has been studying the carcasses of bats that survived white nose syndrome infections, only to succumb to their own immune systems. The overactive immune response…

Honeybee anesthetic

Not only do bees sting, but they also bite victims that are too small for stingers (ex: wax moth larva that invade the beehive and eat pollen) and paralyze them for up to nine minutes by secreting 2-heptanone into the wound. This paralysis gives the bees time to remove the invaders from the beehive. Dr. Papachristoforou…

African rodent species resist scarring

You might be familiar with tissue regeneration in amphibians and reptiles where limbs can be fully regenerated following an injury. Until now, tissue regeneration following a wound was thought to be limited in mammals (ex: deer shed and regrow their antlers annually; some mice can regrow the tips of their fingers). Researchers discovered that African…

Snakes and Ebola

In 2009, scientists at the California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium discovered some of the snakes suffering from a strange illness that caused them to stare off into space, appear like they were drunk and even tie themselves into knots they could not escape. Other serious symptoms included the buildup of proteins, susceptibility to secondary bacterial infections and body wasting.…

Researchers Sanchez et al. from the Gladstone Institute, University of California San Franciso and Washington University School of Medicine discovered that an FDA-approved anti-convulsant medication used to treat epilepsy (levetiracetam) can also reverse memory loss in addition to reducing other Alzheimer’s related symptoms in a mouse model of the disease. Alzheimer’s is currently the most common form of…

  Scientists from Wuhan University in China have discovered compounds in scorpion venom that may be the next new treatment for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacteria and potentially other antibiotic-resistant microbes. Specifically, the peptide BmKn2 was isolated from Mesobuthus martensii and modified into another peptide, Kn2-7 which increased the natural antibacterial properties of BmKn2 while at the same time reducing the…

Life-saving microparticles

Scientists have been able to keep rabbits alive for up to 15 minutes after their windpipes had been blocked by injecting microparticles (yellow in the image below) containing oxygen into their bloodstream.  These microparticles are able to deliver the life-saving oxygen directly to red blood cells allowing the animals to survive with normal blood pressure and heart rates in…