IACS researchers use a novel approach to cancer drug discovery

Four-stranded DNA structures known as G-quadruplexes, which  are present in human genome, can control the activities of cancer-causing genes and hence have emerged as anticancer drug targets. Scientists at the Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science, Jadavpur, Kolkata have used a novel approach to drug discovery by attaching or linking a DNA sequence of … Continue reading IACS researchers use a novel approach to cancer drug discovery

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Western Sahara once had a large river network

If in August 2011 the discovery of an underground ‘river’ in Brazil at a depth of 4 km and stretching for about 6,000 km made news (The Hindu , August 31, 2011), scientists have now discovered evidence of a large river system that once existed in Western Sahara. Based on remote sensing data, the existence … Continue reading Western Sahara once had a large river network

IIT Madras: graphene nanoribbons produced by a novel method

For the first time, researchers have been successful in bringing about spontaneous chemical reactions between two different varieties of carbon nanotubes without using any chemicals. In fact, a simple mechanical grinding of the carbon nanotubes with a mortar and pestle was all that was required to induce chemical reactions.  The end result was the production … Continue reading IIT Madras: graphene nanoribbons produced by a novel method

Now, soft tissue found in ancient dinosaur samples

For the time, soft tissue-like structures that appear to be red blood cells and collagen fibres have been found in 75-million-year-old (Cretaceous) dinosaur specimens that are not well preserved. Till date, soft tissues not older than a few million years have been found only in extremely well preserved samples. Totally eight dinosaur fossil samples from … Continue reading Now, soft tissue found in ancient dinosaur samples

IISc: A novel way to reduce cell damage found

Preliminary studies have shown a way to reduce cell damage and blunt the effect of one of the factors responsible for the onset of several diseases such as cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and ageing. Reactive oxygen species, which are produced continuously in the body during cellular metabolism and responsible for cellular damage, are removed by … Continue reading IISc: A novel way to reduce cell damage found

Targeting a chink in TB bacteria’s armour

A novel approach adopted by a team of researchers based in Bangalore has opened a window of opportunities to design new antimicrobials that could potentially be used to kill the tuberculosis-causing bacteria. The nine-member team comprised of Ph.D students and faculty/professors. The new antimicrobials have been tested only in drug-sensitive TB. But in principle, drug-resistant … Continue reading Targeting a chink in TB bacteria’s armour

Editorial: Open access is here to stay

Published in The Hindu on July 20, 2011 A recent announcement by three major biomedical funding agencies has given a booster dose to the open access (OA) model that provides free access to scientific literature. A freely accessible online journal, which will rival top-tier subscription-based journals like Nature , will be launched next summer by … Continue reading Editorial: Open access is here to stay