Chapel Hill Newswire

Chapel Hill Newswire

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  1. Scientists reveal way to map vast unknown territory of long non-coding RNARead the original story w/Photo

    Sunday Sep 16 | EurekAlert!

    UNC School of Medicine researchers led by Mauro Calabrese, Ph.D., have developed a way to categorize mysterious RNA molecules by their likely function IMAGE: Communities of long non-coding RNAs. Mauro Calabrese and colleagues can now categorize long non-coding RNAs by their function to learn more about the roles of this type of RNA in... view CHAPEL HILL, NC -- Scientists from the University of North Carolina School of Medicine have developed a powerful method for exploring the properties of mysterious molecules called long non-coding RNAs , some of which have big roles in cancer and other serious conditions.


  2. Researchers reveal how gene variant is linked to chronic pain after traumatic injuryRead the original story w/Photo

    Sunday Aug 26 | EurekAlert!

    The study, led by UNC School of Medicine researchers, also shows that the reason the variant affects chronic pain outcomes is because it alters the ability of the gene FKBP5 to be regulated by a microRNA CHAPEL HILL, NC -- The gene FKBP5 is a critical regulator of the stress response and affects how we respond to environmental stimuli. Previous studies have shown that certain variants of this gene play a role in the development of neuropsychiatric disorders such as posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, suicide risk, and aggressive behavior.


  3. Scientists discover intricacies of serotonin receptor crucial for better therapeuticsRead the original story w/Photo

    Aug 19, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    By crystallizing a serotonin receptor bound to several common compounds, UNC School of Medicine scientists discovered how slightly different drugs can cause severe side effects or none at all IMAGE: Drugs vary in their ability to activate the 5-HT2B serotonin receptor. Some drugs strongly activate the receptor and cause potentially life-threatening valvular heart disease while others only weakly activate... view CHAPEL HILL, NC - Serotonin, known as the "happiness" neurotransmitter, is a chemical found in the body responsible for feelings of well-being.


  4. Researchers reveal miscarriage cause, key cellular targets of potential drugsRead the original story w/Photo

    Aug 15, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    UNC School of Medicine researchers show how a rare gene defect disrupts an important interaction between proteins, including cellular receptors crucial to cell function and human health IMAGE: A CLR receptor and a RAMP helper protein localize at the surface of the cell, forming a yellow halo surrounding the bright blue nucleus. Genetic mutations in... view CHAPEL HILL, NC - Tragic miscarriages for a couple have led to a discovery with potentially broad implications for future disease treatments, according to a team of researchers at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine.


  5. Researchers reveal hidden rules of genetics for how life on Earth beganRead the original story w/Photo

    Jul 29, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and University of Auckland researchers team up to show how genes were first translated into proteins to offer insight into a long-time scientific mystery. IMAGE: In the beginning, somehow basic genetic building blocks got translated into proteins to lead to complex life as we know it.


  6. Can scientists leverage mysterious mossy cells for brain disease treatments?Read the original story w/Photo

    Jul 25, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    UNC School of Medicine researchers and colleagues show how specific brain cells communicate with adult neural stem cells, a discovery that could open new investigations into potential treatments for some neurological disorders and brain injuries IMAGE: This confocal image shows the mossy cell commissural projections and neural stem cells in the adult mouse dentate gyrus region of the brain. view CHAPEL HILL, NC - A small population of brain cells deep in a memory-making region of the brain controls the production of new neurons and may have a role in common brain disorders, according to a study from scientists at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine.


  7. Scientists discover new gene expression mechanism with possible role in human diseaseRead the original story w/Photo

    Jun 20, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    UNC School of Medicine researchers, led by Brian Strahl, PhD, found surprising role for a protein called Spt6, which is crucial to the maintenance of proper messenger RNA levels in cells, a discovery that opens new research avenues and suggests a target f IMAGE: The protein Stp6 wears many hats, including one for RNA degradation, which the lab of Brian Strahl, PhD, discovered at the UNC School of Medicine. view CHAPEL HILL, NC - When cells grow and divide to ensure a biological function - such as a properly working organ - DNA must be unwound from its typical tightly packed form and copied into RNA to create proteins.


  8. Water fluoridation confirmed to prevent dental decay in US children and adolescentsRead the original story w/Photo

    Jun 13, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    Alexandria, Va., USA - The fluoridation of America's drinking water was among the great public health achievements of the twentieth century but there is a scarcity of studies from the last three decades investigating the impact of water fluoridation on dental health in the U.S. population. A recent study "Water fluoridation and dental caries in U.S. children and adolescents," published in the Journal of Dental Research , evaluated associations between the availability of community water fluoridation and dental caries experience in U.S. child and adolescent populations.


  9. Getting to the heart of congenital cardiac defectsRead the original story w/Photo

    Jun 11, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    June 12, 2018 - CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- Heart defects are the most common type of birth defect, and can be caused by mutations in the gene CHD4. Researchers at the UNC School of Medicine have now revealed key molecular details of how CHD4 mutations lead to heart defects.


  10. UNC researchers discover how body temperature wrecks potential dengue, Zika vaccineRead the original story w/Photo

    May 17, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    The UNC School of Medicine labs of Brian Kuhlman, Ph.D., and Aravinda de Silva, Ph.D., found that key components of a potentially potent vaccine fall apart due to body temperature, leaving us susceptible to severe infection instead of protection CHAPEL HILL, NC - A major route toward creating effective vaccines against dengue virus and Zika involves the E protein that covers the surface of each viral particle. If we could develop strong antibodies against this E protein, then that would be the crux of a formidable vaccine - based on the important fact that the 180 E proteins come in pairs.


  11. Researchers identify 44 genomic variants associated with depressionRead the original story w/Photo

    Apr 25, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    The study, co-led by Patrick Sullivan of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Naomi Wray of the University of Queensland, is the largest genome-wide association study to date of genetic risk factors for major depression IMAGE: This is study co-leader Patrick F. Sullivan, M.D., FRANZCP, Yeargen Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry and Genetics and Director of the Center for Psychiatric Genomics at the University of North Carolina... view CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - A new meta-analysis of more than 135,000 people with major depression and more than 344,000 controls has identified 44 genomic variants, or loci, that have a statistically significant association with depression.


  12. Leadership and adaptive reserve are not associated with blood pressure controlRead the original story w/Photo

    Apr 8, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    In a recently published study in the Annals of Family Medicine , Kamal Henderson, MD, et al, assessed whether a practice's adaptive reserve and high leadership capability in quality improvement are associated with population blood pressure control. The article, entitled "Organizational Leadership and Adaptive Reserve in Blood Pressure Control: The Heart Health NOW Study," reveals that adaptive reserve and leadership capability in quality improvement implementation are not statistically associated with achieving top quartile practice-level hypertension control at baseline in the Heart Health NOW project.


  13. Some e-cigarette ingredients are surprisingly more toxic than othersRead the original story w/Photo

    Mar 26, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    UNC School of Medicine scientists led by Robert Tarran created a new screening technique to deduce the different toxicity levels of the more than 7,700 types of e-liquid flavors available to consumers IMAGE: Human cells exposed to two kinds of e-cig flavored vapor and PG-VG non-flavored vapor at high doses. Green indicates live cells; red indicates dead cells.


  14. Study maps molecular mechanisms crucial for new approach to heart disease therapyRead the original story w/Photo

    Feb 12, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    Scientists led by UNC McAllister Heart Institute researcher Frank Conlon, Ph.D., reveal detailed molecular events underlying the transformation of ordinary fibroblast cells into therapeutic cardiac muscle cells CHAPEL HILL, NC - Creating new healthy heart muscle cells within a patient's own ailing heart. This is how scientists hope to reverse heart disease one day.


  15. More stroke patients may receive crucial treatments under new guidelineRead the original story w/Photo

    Jan 23, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    More patients could be eligible for critical treatments to remove or dissolve blood clots that cause strokes, according to a new treatment guideline issued by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. The guideline, based on the most recent science available, was published in the Association's journal Stroke, and released during the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference 2018, the premier global meeting for researchers and clinicians dedicated to the prevention and treatment of stroke.


  16. Scientific breakthrough could lead to better antipsychotic drugsRead the original story w/Photo

    Jan 23, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    Published in Nature, research revealed the first-ever crystal structure of the dopamine 2 receptor bound to an antipsychotic drug - a much-needed discovery in the quest to create effective drugs with fewer side effects CHAPEL HILL, NC - Although antipsychotic drugs are among the most widely prescribed medications, individuals with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and autism-spectrum disorders often experience severe side effects because the drugs interact with dozens of other brain receptors.


  17. Cystic fibrosis bacterial burden begins during first years of lifeRead the original story w/Photo

    Jan 18, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    UNC School of Medicine scientists show that therapies to break up mucus in toddlers might offer the best route to a longer life for CF patients. IMAGE: This is a microscopic image of Staphylococcus aureus , a problematic pathogen that infects the airways of children with cystic fibrosis.


  18. Scientists take a big step toward building a better opioidRead the original story w/Photo

    Jan 3, 2018 | EurekAlert!

    UNC School of Medicine researchers and collaborators show how to activate only one kind of brain receptor vital for pain relief, a key step in the creation of better pain medications CHAPEL HILL, NC - For the first time, scientists at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine and collaborators solved the crystal structure of the activated kappa opioid receptor bound to a morphine derivative. They then created a new drug-like compound that activates only that receptor, a key step in the development of new pain medications.


  19. New simple test could help cystic fibrosis patients find best treatmentRead the original story w/Photo

    Nov 20, 2017 | EurekAlert!

    In a significant step toward personalized medicine for cystic fibrosis, a minimally-invasive technique shows promise as a fast, inexpensive indicator to help more patients access new treatments IMAGE: These are nasospheroids that developed from a CF patient's nasal tissue in a dish. UNC researchers are using them to screen the effectiveness of CF treatments.


  20. Could this protein protect people against coronary artery disease?Read the original story w/Photo

    Nov 15, 2017 | EurekAlert!

    Research led by UNC's Jonathan Schisler, PhD, showed much lower levels of the protein CXCL5 in older people with clogged arteries IMAGE: Patients with no obstructed blood flow in the coronary arteries had higher levels of CXCL5 compared to patients with moderate levels or lower levels of CXCL5, who... view CHAPEL HILL, NC - The buildup of plaque in the heart's arteries is an unfortunate part of aging. But by studying the genetic makeup of people who maintain clear arteries into old age, researchers led by UNC's Jonathan Schisler, PhD, have identified a possible genetic basis for coronary artery disease , as well as potential new opportunities to prevent it.


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