Unraveling the Antibody Mystery in HIV Vaccine Trials

An antibody of the IgG3 type, an antibody subclass known to protect against malaria and other infectious diseases, may be responsible for the variable immune response triggered by two different HIV vaccines in recent clinical trials, two new studies report. The findings could help scientists boost particular immune responses in future vaccine studies, with the aim of getting closer to an HIV vaccine that’s effective and long-lasting. 

Read more about this research from the 19 March issue of Science Translational Medicine here.

[Image courtesy of V. Altounian/Science Translational Medicine]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Unraveling the Antibody Mystery in HIV Vaccine Trials

An antibody of the IgG3 type, an antibody subclass known to protect against malaria and other infectious diseases, may be responsible for the variable immune response triggered by two different HIV vaccines in recent clinical trials, two new studies report. The findings could help scientists boost particular immune responses in future vaccine studies, with the aim of getting closer to an HIV vaccine that’s effective and long-lasting.

Read more about this research from the 19 March issue of Science Translational Medicine here.

[Image courtesy of V. Altounian/Science Translational Medicine]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Chromosomal Clues to Cancer Survival

Molecules called cytokines that function in cell signaling and are found on chromosomes could offer clues to the survival of cancer patients, a new study reports. The findings hint that therapies designed to boost or mimic IL-15 and increase the proliferation of T cells may be effective for treating cancer.

Read more about this research from the 19 March issue of Science Translational Medicine here.

[Image courtesy of Jerome Galon, INSERM, Paris, France. Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Chromosomal Clues to Cancer Survival

Molecules called cytokines that function in cell signaling and are found on chromosomes could offer clues to the survival of cancer patients, a new study reports. The findings hint that therapies designed to boost or mimic IL-15 and increase the proliferation of T cells may be effective for treating cancer.

Read more about this research from the 19 March issue of Science Translational Medicine here.

[Image courtesy of Jerome Galon, INSERM, Paris, France. Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Iron-clad Insights into Useful Dust

Scientists have better insight into what caused changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations across glacial cycles, a new study reports.

Read more about this research from the 21 March issue of Science here.

[Image courtesy of William M. Putman and Arlindo M. da Silva (NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center). Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Iron-clad Insights into Useful Dust

Scientists have better insight into what caused changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations across glacial cycles, a new study reports.

Read more about this research from the 21 March issue of Science here.

[Image courtesy of William M. Putman and Arlindo M. da Silva (NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center). Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

mothernaturenetwork:

Lunar eclipse is the highlight of April’s stargazing sightsA solar eclipse and the Lyrid meteor shower are also on the calendar.

mothernaturenetwork:

Lunar eclipse is the highlight of April’s stargazing sights
A solar eclipse and the Lyrid meteor shower are also on the calendar.

Study Indicates Royal Ferns are “Living Fossils”

Researchers have discovered a 180-million-year-old fossil fern with pristinely preserved subcellular structures, including its nuclei and chromosomes, which closely resemble those of today’s cinnamon fern, Osmundastrum cinnamomeum. The ancient fossil, which was found at Korsaröd in southern Sweden, suggests that the size of the ferns’ genome has not changed for hundreds of millions of years, and it strengthens the reputation of royal ferns (those belonging to the Osmundaceae family) as “living fossils.” 

Read more about this research from the 21 March issue of Science here.

[Image courtesy of Benjamin Bomfleur. Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Study Indicates Royal Ferns are “Living Fossils”

Researchers have discovered a 180-million-year-old fossil fern with pristinely preserved subcellular structures, including its nuclei and chromosomes, which closely resemble those of today’s cinnamon fern, Osmundastrum cinnamomeum. The ancient fossil, which was found at Korsaröd in southern Sweden, suggests that the size of the ferns’ genome has not changed for hundreds of millions of years, and it strengthens the reputation of royal ferns (those belonging to the Osmundaceae family) as “living fossils.”

Read more about this research from the 21 March issue of Science here.

[Image courtesy of Benjamin Bomfleur. Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Crows, Cuckoos and the Occasional Benefits of Parasitism

A 16-year study of great spotted cuckoos and the carrion crows on which they act as nest parasites (by sneaking their own eggs into the crows’ nests), reveals that these parasitic cuckoos can also help their hosts by repelling predators. Such findings suggest that the lines between parasitism, commensalism and mutualism — terms defining how organisms interact with one another — are not as black-and-white as researchers have thought, and they highlight how dependent species’ interactions can be upon environmental factors. 

Read more about this research from the 21 March issue of Science here.

[Image courtesy of Vittorio Baglione. Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Crows, Cuckoos and the Occasional Benefits of Parasitism

A 16-year study of great spotted cuckoos and the carrion crows on which they act as nest parasites (by sneaking their own eggs into the crows’ nests), reveals that these parasitic cuckoos can also help their hosts by repelling predators. Such findings suggest that the lines between parasitism, commensalism and mutualism — terms defining how organisms interact with one another — are not as black-and-white as researchers have thought, and they highlight how dependent species’ interactions can be upon environmental factors.

Read more about this research from the 21 March issue of Science here.

[Image courtesy of Vittorio Baglione. Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Sarah Crespi & David Lazer - Pitfalls of the “Big Data Revolution”
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Pitfalls of the “Big Data Revolution”

Big data is providing new opportunities to study human behavior and interactions at the broadest levels. However, analyses of such data sets have been complicated by the fact that so much big data has not been collected with quite the same care as “small data,” according to the authors of this Policy Forum. David Lazer and colleagues use Google Flu Trends (GFT) as an example of big data analysis missing the mark — and they offer suggestions for moving forward in this new age of research and analysis.

In this podcast (© Science), Sarah Crespi interviews David Lazer about the good and bad of big data.

Read more about this Policy Forum from the 14 March issue of Science here.

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Making New Blood Vessels Stick

Vein grafts have not had a track record for lasting success, but now a new study reveals a signaling pathway that could be targeted to prevent them from narrowing. Vein grafting is often used to restore blood flow to the heart, flow that has been obstructed by hardened fatty plaques (a condition called atherosclerosis). 

Read more about this research from the 12 March issue of Science Translational Medicine here.

[mage courtesy of M. Boehm, NHLBI, NIH. Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Making New Blood Vessels Stick

Vein grafts have not had a track record for lasting success, but now a new study reveals a signaling pathway that could be targeted to prevent them from narrowing. Vein grafting is often used to restore blood flow to the heart, flow that has been obstructed by hardened fatty plaques (a condition called atherosclerosis).

Read more about this research from the 12 March issue of Science Translational Medicine here.

[mage courtesy of M. Boehm, NHLBI, NIH. Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

The Trigger for the Antibody Support System

A new study provides detailed insights into what kick-starts the body’s complement system, a system that gives antibodies a boost, helping them to clear pathogens. The complement system — made of proteins in the blood — has several triggers. These include antibodies bound to the pathogens they’re neutralizing. Scientists have not understood just how antibodies activate the complement system, however. This clearer understanding of how antibodies trigger complement activation could aid in the design of antibodies that activate the system even more efficiently than those in use today.

Read more about this research from the 14 March issue of Science here.

[Image courtesy of Image courtesy of Joost Bakker, www.scicomvisuals.com. Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

The Trigger for the Antibody Support System

A new study provides detailed insights into what kick-starts the body’s complement system, a system that gives antibodies a boost, helping them to clear pathogens. The complement system — made of proteins in the blood — has several triggers. These include antibodies bound to the pathogens they’re neutralizing. Scientists have not understood just how antibodies activate the complement system, however. This clearer understanding of how antibodies trigger complement activation could aid in the design of antibodies that activate the system even more efficiently than those in use today.

Read more about this research from the 14 March issue of Science here.

[Image courtesy of Image courtesy of Joost Bakker, www.scicomvisuals.com. Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Despite Few Food Options, Abundant Array of Species

A close look at tropical flies and the parasitic wasps that lay eggs inside them reveals an incredibly complex web of interactions, including some that would have remained hidden without advanced molecular techniques. The complex web raises questions about how species interact. 

Read more about this research from the 14 March issue of Science here.

[Image courtesy of Marty Condon. Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

Despite Few Food Options, Abundant Array of Species

A close look at tropical flies and the parasitic wasps that lay eggs inside them reveals an incredibly complex web of interactions, including some that would have remained hidden without advanced molecular techniques. The complex web raises questions about how species interact.

Read more about this research from the 14 March issue of Science here.

[Image courtesy of Marty Condon. Please click here for more information.]

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.