Scientists discover way to stop spread of devastating childhood cancer

Researchers at the University of East Anglia and University of Manchester have made an important breakthrough that could lead to “kinder” treatments for children with bone cancer, and save lives. Current treatment is grueling, with outdated chemotherapy cocktails and limb amputation. But despite all of this, the five-year survival rate is poor at just 42 percent—largely because of how rapidly […]

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Brain cells can harbor and spread HIV virus to the body

Researchers have found that astrocytes, a type of brain cell can harbor HIV and then spread the virus to immune cells that traffic out of the brain and into other organs. HIV moved from the brain via this route even when the virus was suppressed by combination antiretroviral therapy (cART), a standard treatment for HIV. The study, conducted by researchers […]

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Can coronavirus spread 4 metres?

Recent headlines have suggested COVID-19 can spread up to four metres, drawing into question the current advice to maintain 1.5 metres between people to prevent the spread of the virus. The news was based on a study conducted in Wuhan, China, and published in the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases. Meanwhile, a review published last week in the Journal of Infectious […]

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Why releasing some prisoners is essential to stop the spread of coronavirus

In a national emergency, governments typically pursue punitive law-enforcement agendas. They can also repurpose prisons and prisoners for forced labor, war efforts and so on. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, governments have tended towards punitive controls and sanctions on movement and hoarding. But the Australian government has been silent on prison policy in its coronavirus control measures. The well-documented […]

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China warns virus could mutate and spread as death toll rises

A new virus that has killed nine people, infected hundreds and reached the United States could mutate and spread, China warned Wednesday, as authorities urged people to steer clear of the city at the heart of the outbreak. The coronavirus has caused alarm because of its similarity to SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), which killed nearly 650 people across mainland […]

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Body’s natural signal carriers can help melanoma spread

A new study from Finland sheds fresh light on how melanoma cells interact with other cells via extracellular vesicles they secrete. The researchers found that extracellular vesicles secreted by melanoma cells use the so-called hedgehog signaling pathway to intensify the malignant properties of the cells they are targeting. The discovery can help in the development of better treatment and diagnostics […]

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Circular RNA limits skin cancer spread

A mysterious piece of genetic material restrains the spread of skin cancer cells, but is frequently lost as they mature, a new study finds. Published online January 13 in Cancer Cell, the new work revolves around circular RNA, a recently described type of ribonucleic acid (RNA). Typically, DNA blueprints are converted into RNA and then into proteins with cellular functions. […]

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New model explains how our immune system sometimes helps cancer spread

Mathematicians at the University of Alberta have developed a model that explains how the immune system interacts with cancer—and in some cases, may help cancer spread to other areas of the body. “Past research has shown that sometimes, the immune system has the opposite effect of what we might expect,” said Thomas Hillen, a mathematical biologist at the U of […]

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