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News

Better drug to save mothers’ lives during childbirth may be on the way

January 9, 2019 | News

Postpartum bleeding is the world’s leading cause of death for women during and after childbirth, and the third-leading cause in the United States alone. Many doctors in developing countries have turned to the drug misoprostol to save more women from deadly hemorrhaging. Misoprostol, although affordable, has dangerous side effects, including uterine cramping, heart attack, toxicity in the brain and spinal cord, fetal death and fetal heart abnormalities. Development of a...

Protecting U.S. elections against attack: What’s biology have to do with it?

January 8, 2019 | News

Most of us think of cybersecurity and biology as distinct areas of study. To better understand how we might apply principles of immunology to developing safeguards against cyber attacks, researchers are looking to ways in which the immune system of humans and other mammals naturally combats pathogens. In the first “Dialogues in Complexity” lecture, national experts will present their insights related to this emerging field of study. “Protecting against Bad Actors: From Election...

Essential nutrient may help fight Alzheimer’s across generations

January 8, 2019 | News

In a new study, researchers at the Biodesign Institute explore a safe and simple treatment for one of the most devastating and perplexing afflictions: Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Lead authors Ramon Velazquez and Salvatore Oddo, along with their colleagues in the ASU-Banner Neurodegenerative Disease Research Center (NDRC), investigate the effects of choline, an important nutrient that may hold promise in the war against the memory-stealing disorder. The study focuses on mice bred to...

DNA on auto-pilot

January 3, 2019 | News

Nature has made extravagant use of a simple molecule—DNA, the floorplan of all earthly life. Inventive researchers have used the same base-pairing properties that bond two strands of DNA into the familiar double helix to build innumerable useful structures at the nanometer scale. One such method, known as DNA origami, has yielded rich results in recent years, enabling the construction of a rapidly growing menagerie of 2- and 3-dimensional objects, with far-flung applications in material...

Experts wrestle with today’s tough biotechnology questions at third Arizona Biosecurity Workshop

December 18, 2018 | News

Given the enormous attention recently trained on a Chinese scientist who performed a gene editing experiment on human twins, interest in scientific protocol, responsibility and biosecurity is at an all-time high. Attendance at the third annual Arizona Biosecurity Workshop, held at Arizona State University, Dec. 13 and 14 was certainly evidence of the fierce current debate. At the event, the biggest questions revolved around the threats, opportunities and responsibilities tied to emerging...

Defining Quality Virus Data

December 17, 2018 | News

Microbes in, on and around the planet are said to outnumber the stars in the Milky Way Galaxy. The total number of viruses is expected to vastly exceed even that calculation. Arvind Varsani, a researcher in the Biodesign Center for Fundamental and Applied Microbiomics has hunted these elusive entities in far-flung locales, from the Pacific Islands and Amazonian jungles to Antarctic ice floes. In a new report, he joins an international group of researchers attempting to establish more...

Proteomics may have saved my mother's life. And it may yet save mine

December 14, 2018 | News

The New York Times THE SERGEANT WITH the Mount Crested Butte Police Department in Colorado appeared and I was with my wife and our two young children, ages 2 and 7, at Lake Irwin, a remote campsite at 10,200 feet in the Rocky Mountains. When the officer stepped out of his S.U.V. cruiser, its blue and red emergency strobes piercing the darkness, I thought that perhaps a neighboring camper had summoned him to silence my dissonant guitar strumming beside the campfire. “I’m...

Discovering New Cancer Treatments By Studying Cacti

December 12, 2018 | News

What can a type of cactus tell us about cancer, and treating the disease? Two researchers at ASU believe it's a lot. Carlo Maley and Athena Aktipis have helped set up a cactus garden on the school’s Tempe campus — but the garden doesn’t feature the kinds of specimens you might expect to see. Instead, they’re plants with kinds of malformations on them. Maley is an associate professor in ASU’s School of Life Sciences and director of the Arizona Cancer Evolution Center. Aktipis is...

National Academy of Inventors announces two ASU researchers as 2018 Fellows

December 11, 2018 | News

Arizona State University researchers Joshua LaBaer and Nathan Newman have been named Fellows of the National Academy of Inventors, the organization announced today. Election to NAI Fellow status is the highest professional accolade bestowed solely to academic inventors who have demonstrated a prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on the quality of life, economic development and welfare of society.  “With...

Nobel Prize 2018 elevates awareness of immunotherapy research

December 10, 2018 | News

Researchers at the Biodesign Institute are searching for new ways to diagnose, treat – and even cure – cancer patients using processes related to immunotherapy. According to the National Cancer Institute, immunotherapy is “a type of therapy that uses substances to stimulate or suppress the immune system to help the body fight cancer, infection, and other diseases.” The burgeoning field of immunotherapy was recently recognized at the highest level with the announcement of the 2018...