Deadly tick-borne virus cured with experimental flu drug, in mice: Bourbon virus has sickened people in Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma

Only a few cases of the newly discovered Bourbon virus have been reported, and two of them ended in death, partly because no specific treatments are available for the tick-borne illness. Now, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have identified an experimental antiviral drug that cures mice infected with the potentially lethal virus. The drug, favipiravir, […]

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On the way to fighting staph infections with the body’s immune system

Researchers have gained a greater understanding of the biology of staphylococcus skin infections in mice and how the mouse immune system mobilizes to fight them. A study appears this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Community acquired methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA) typically causes skin infections but can spread throughout the body to cause invasive infections such […]

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Probiotic-derived molecule may suppress fatal brain inflammation, preclinical study finds: Scientists explore how swallowing a ‘bacterial envelope molecule’ may prime your body to fend off viral infections

The existence of certain microorganisms in your gut may bolster the immune system’s ability to fend off a herpes viral attack that can cause fatal brain inflammation, reports a new City of Hope-led study. Researchers say the findings are the first to suggest that an envelope molecule from a bacterium called Bacteroides fragilis (B. fragilis) might be useful against viral […]

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Drug can reverse hyperactivity induced by parasitic infection

When rodents get infected by Toxoplasma gondii, the single-celled brain parasite that causes toxoplasmosis, they become hyperactive risk-takers. In findings published this week in mBio, researchers show for the first time that it’s possible to reverse that behavioral change. Surprisingly, the study also showed that the restoration of normal behavior resulted from reducing inflammation — and not from reducing the […]

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Same brain cells active during sleep and exploration in mice

Researchers have mapped the activity of individual neurons deep in the brain during sleep and exploration of novel objects in male and female mice. The study, published in JNeurosci, suggests these cells may facilitate memory formation. Melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) neurons are active during rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep, when dreaming—and perhaps memory consolidation—occurs. Carlos Blanco, Priyattam Shiromani, and colleagues at the […]

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Researchers discover how tumor-killing immune cells attack lymphomas in living mice

In a study that will be published April 1 in the Journal of Experimental Medicine, researchers from the Institut Pasteur and INSERM reveal that chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells can induce tumor regression by directly targeting and killing cancer cells, uncovering new details of how these immune cells work and how their effectiveness could be improved in the treatment […]

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New microscope captures large groups of neurons in living animals: Fast, detailed imaging across a wide field of view useful for deciphering brain functions

Researchers have developed a microscope specifically for imaging large groups of interacting cells in their natural environments. The instrument provides scientists with a new tool for imaging neurons in living animals and could provide an unprecedented view into how large networks of neurons interact during various behaviors. In Optica, The Optical Society’s journal for high-impact research, researchers from Boston University, […]

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Sex and aggression in mice controlled by cold-sensor in brain

Testosterone is blamed for sex drive and aggression, but it also appears to be critical for telling the brain “enough!” when it comes to those behaviors. A molecule called TRPM8 (pronounced trip-M-8) embedded in the surface of some cells seems to be responsible for sending these cues in response to testosterone. Without these cues, male mice become dangerously aggressive and […]

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Dementia patients’ memories could be RESTORED, study on mice suggests

Dementia patients’ memories could be RESTORED with injection to suppress certain enzymes, study on mice suggests University of Buffalo scientists injecting dementia-stricken rodents with a new drug They saw a ‘dramatic’ shift in the rodents’ recognition memory, spatial memory and working memory Mice with dementia had their memories restored after receiving an injection to suppress a certain enzyme, a new […]

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Teen brain volume changes with small amount of cannabis use, study finds

At a time when several states are moving to legalize recreational use of marijuana, new research shows that concerns about the drug’s impact on teens may be warranted. The study, published in The Journal of Neuroscience, shows that even a small amount of cannabis use by teenagers is linked to differences in their brains. Senior author and University of Vermont […]

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