Monthly Archives: May 2015

Nearly indestructible virus yields tool to treat diseases

By unlocking the secrets of a bizarre virus that survives in nearly boiling acid, scientists at the University of Virginia School of Medicine have found a blueprint for battling human disease using DNA clad in near-indestructible armor. “What’s interesting and unusual is being able to see how proteins and DNA can be put together in a way that’s absolutely stable under the harshest conditions imaginable,” said Edward H. Egelman, PhD, of the UVA Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics. “We’ve discovered what appears to be a basic mechanism of resistance – to heat, to desiccation, to ultraviolet radiation. And knowing that, then, we can go in many different directions, including developing ways to package DNA for gene therapy.”

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Cognitive impairment predicts worse outcome in heart failure

24 May 2015: Cognitive impairment predicts worse outcome in elderly heart failure patients, reveals research presented today at Heart Failure 2015 by Hiroshi Saito, a physiotherapist at Kameda Medical Centre in Kamogawa, Japan. Patients with cognitive impairment had a 7.5 times greater risk of call cause death and heart failure readmission. Heart failure patients with cognitive impairment may get progressively worse at adhering to medications, leading to poorer prognosis.139211241351423392122714

Mosquito sex-determining gene could help fight dengue fever

Males aren’t relevant — at least when it comes to disease transmission by mosquitoes. Researchers with the Fralin Life Science Institute at Virginia Tech have identified a gene responsible for sex determination in mosquitoes that can transmit yellow fever, dengue, and chikungunya viruses.2015052411031290