Saturday, March 31, 2012

Exome vs. Transcriptome

What is an exome and what is a transcriptome? I see that people are searching for their respective definitions often.

Exome refers to the collection of exons: 5'UTR exons, coding exons, 3'UTR exons in a certain species.
Transcriptome on the other hand is a collection of transcribed mRNAs in a certain cell type or specific tissue. Transcriptome could be comprised of multiple mRNAs transcribed from a single gene locus due to e.g. alternative splicing or alternative promoter usage. Thus, when you download mRNAs databases, e.g. from UCSC Genome Browser, they are usually much larger than the databases containing only the collection of exons.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

One drug anti-CD47 antibody in treatment of all tumors

Anti-CD47 antibody may be the drug that will treat all tumors in the future according to the findings published in PNAS. CD47 are molecules that are present on the surface of the blood cells and that prevent immune system from destroying them. Tumors use this surface protein to avoid immune response, as well.

Although anti-CD47 antibody may provoke immune response against normal blood cells and decrease their numbers, on the other hand it has been shown that it is quite efficient in tackling tumors by provoking immune response against tumors and thus may represent a potential unique treatment of all types of tumors in the future.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Why do you get seasick on a boat and vomit

Why do you get seasick when on a boat and vomit. It is called a sensory mismatch.

When inside a cabin, your brain gets conflicting information. Eyes are telling everything is still, while inner ear senses motion.
Brain thinks it is being poisoned by neurotoxin and triggers vomiting to get rid of the toxin.

This hypothesis has been first suggested in a Science paper from 1977 by M. Treisman.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

How to turn off Personal results in Google search

Google recently has made that by default every search actually becomes a Google plus search. They call it 'Search, plus Your World' feature. So instead of only pages that were ranked best by Google's PageRank algorithm, you will get a mix of these pages with the pages and images of your Google + friends. They claim this will make you interact better with your friends etc.

While this may be true, it is actually limiting your search results and preventing you from finding a relevant information to your search. Here is how to turn it off:

Type anything to search in Google.
Click on the wheel on the top right of your screen.
Click Search settings.
Under Personal results check Do not use personal results
Click Save.

And you are done.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Killer T cell recognizes a cancer cell

Check this out. This is the video of a killer T cell interacting with a cancer cell. At least ones per day in your body a killer T cell kills a potentially cancerous cell.

After the recognition of the cell via the interaction of the surface molecules, killer T-cell actually releases a mileau of proteins into the immunological synapse. Perforins will open the cancer cell's membrane and allow for proteins called Granzymes to enter the cancer cell. Granzymes will then induce apoptosis in the target cancer cell.

Monday, March 5, 2012

HDAC2 histone deacetylases are crucial targets for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease

HDAC2 histone deacetylases may be the ultimate target enzymes that need to be inhibited in the brain of Alzheimer's patients, hyppocampus especially where the new memory is formed. They inhibit the expression of genes involved in synaptic plasticity by inducing the closed chromatin conformation in the regions of these genes. By inhibiting HDAC2 in mice with AD symptoms, researchers were able to restore their cognitive functions. The formation of amyloid plaques thus seems not be the leading cause of AD.

This also raises another question whether AD is epigentically regulated in any way. If this is the case, it would implicate that environmental stimuli in early development of an oocite would poise the future events and lead to development of AD in the later stages of life, and also maybe in a subsequent generation.