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THE BIOWORLD BIOME: Our Habitat for All Things Science


Researchers at the University of Notre Dame have reported they were able to accelerate diabetic wound healing through a combination of inhibiting one matrix metalloproteinase (MMP), and that the wound healing was further accelerated if they simultaneously administered another, MMP8. They published their results in the Nov. 23, 2015, online issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The Next Generation

Researchers at Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc. and the University of California at San Diego have reported on a STAT3-targeting antisense oligonucleotide (ASO) that "produced robust antisense-mediated inhibition of target RNA molecules in tumors of several preclinical models, and demonstrated single-agent antitumor activity in several highly refractory cancer patients in a phase I dose-escalation study," corresponding author Robert MacLeod told BioWorld Today.


HONG KONG – Combining suppression of stemness with lineage-specific induction using a newly developed sequential treatment protocol leads to the successful conversion of pluripotent stem cells (PSCs) into functioning neurons for potential use in regenerative medicine, a study by Korean researchers has found.


To skeptics, looking for cancer drugs by screening cell lines is the equivalent of searching for your lost wallet under a street lamp. The types of cells that can be cultured, the argument goes, are different in critical ways from those that can't, and any knowledge gleaned from them is likely to lead drug developers down a primrose path that ends in clinical failure.


HONG KONG – A new collaborative study by the Riken Center for Life Science Technologies (CLST) in Japan and the Harry Perkins Institute for Medical Research in Australia has identified multiple new genes that are up-regulated in different cancer types, opening the door for the development of new biomarker tests for early cancer detection and more effective new treatments.

Treatment with an antibody that is the mouse equivalent of bapineuzumab not only failed to reduce the neuronal hyperactivity that is a physiological feature of Alzheimer's disease (AD), but actually worsened it. The findings, which were published by researchers from the German Technical University of Munich in the Nov. 9, 2015, online issue of Nature Neuroscience, add yet more complexity to the relationship between amyloid beta and AD.

HONG KONG – An Australian study has identified a critical molecular feedback loop that helps initiate and drive neuroblastoma, which may result in a badly needed new treatment strategy for the disease, Sydney Children’s Hospital and University of New South Wales (UNSW) researchers reported in the Nov. 4, 2015, issue of Science Translational Medicine.


BOSTON — The Molecular Targets meeting, a joint endeavor of the American Association for Cancer Research, the National Cancer Institute, and the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (AACR-NCI-EORTC), wrapped up a lively four days on Monday with a discussion of "the in vitro patient."


BOSTON – Among the data presented at the joint Molecular Targets meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research, the National Cancer Institute, and the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (AACR-NCI-EORTC) were phase I trial as well as preclinical results for the newest member of the a poly-ADP ribose polymerase (PARP) inhibitor club.

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