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Health - Life Sciences - 16.10.2023
Genetic risk scores not useful in predicting disease
Genetic risk scores not useful in predicting disease
Polygenic risk scores, which estimate a person's disease risk based on thousands or millions of common genetic variants, perform poorly in screening and prediction of common diseases such as heart disease, according to a new study led by UCL researchers. It has been claimed that polygenic risk scores will transform the prediction and prevention of common diseases.

Health - Life Sciences - 13.10.2023
Most accurate test to date developed to measure biological aging
Published: 13 October 2023 A team of European researchers has developed a new test that can accurately measure biological aging in a clinical setting. The discovery was made while studying patients for the aging effects of chronic kidney disease A team of European researchers has developed a new test that can accurately measure biological aging in a clinical setting.

Life Sciences - 11.10.2023
Neanderthal gene variants associated with greater pain sensitivity
Neanderthal gene variants associated with greater pain sensitivity
People who carry three gene variants that have bene inherited from Neanderthals are more sensitive to some types of pain, according to a new study co-led by UCL researchers. The findings, published in , are the latest findings to show how past interbreeding with Neanderthals has influenced the genetics of modern humans.

Health - Life Sciences - 11.10.2023
Certain navigational mistakes could be early signs of Alzheimer's disease
Certain navigational mistakes could be early signs of Alzheimer’s disease
People with early Alzheimer's disease have difficulty turning when walking, according to a new study using virtual reality led by UCL researchers. The study, published in Current Biology , used a computational model to further explore the intricacies of navigational errors previously observed in Alzheimer's disease.

Health - Life Sciences - 11.10.2023
Scientists unlock secrets of the ageing process
Published: 11 October 2023 How we grow old gracefully - and whether we can do anything to slow down the process - has long been a fascination of humanity. However, despite continued research the answer to how we can successfully combat ageing still remains elusive. How we grow old gracefully - and whether we can do anything to slow down the process - has long been a fascination of humanity.

Health - Life Sciences - 10.10.2023
Gene-edited chickens show promise in fight against bird flu
Scientists have successfully used gene editing techniques to limit the spread of bird flu in chickens. In a UK first, researchers have been able to restrict, but not completely block, the avian influenza virus from infecting the birds by precisely altering a small section of their DNA. The modified birds showed no signs that the change had any impact on the animals' health or well-being.

Health - Life Sciences - 09.10.2023
AI language models could help diagnose schizophrenia
AI language models could help diagnose schizophrenia
Scientists at the UCL Queen Square Institute for Neurology have developed new tools, based on AI language models, that can characterise subtle signatures in the speech of patients diagnosed with schizophrenia. The research, published in PNAS , aims to understand how the automated analysis of language could help doctors and scientists diagnose and assess psychiatric conditions.

Health - Life Sciences - 05.10.2023
Gene therapy opens new possibilities for treating chronic pain
Researchers from the Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences at the University of Oxford, along with colleagues at Cambridge University and Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry, have shown the potential of a new gene therapy approach to silence human sensory neurons (nerve cells) as a means of treating persistent pain.

Life Sciences - Health - 05.10.2023
Neurons that act as brain ’glue’ to recall memories
Scientists discover neurons that act as brain 'glue' to recall memories Scientists have discovered new insights into how our brain stores episodic memories - a type of long-term, conscious memory of a previous experience - which could be critical to the development of new neuroprosthetic devices to help patients with memory problems, like Alzheimer's disease and dementia Scientists have discovered new insights into how our brain stores episodic

Health - Life Sciences - 05.10.2023
New discovery may 'unlock' the future of infectious disease and cancer treatment
New discovery may ’unlock’ the future of infectious disease and cancer treatment
Attack protein guard mechanisms can be used to kill pathogens such as Toxoplasma, and cancer. Researchers have identified a 'guard mechanism' for a protein which attacks microbes in infected cells, opening the possibility of new treatments for Toxoplasma, Chlamydia, Tuberculosis and even cancer. A study, led by the University of Birmingham and published today (5th October) in Science has discovered the lock and key mechanism that controls the attack protein GPB1.

Physics - Life Sciences - 04.10.2023
Assembly Theory unifies physics and biology to explain evolution and complexity
An international team of researchers has developed a new theoretical framework that bridges physics and biology to provide a unified approach for understanding how complexity and evolution emerge in nature. An international team of researchers has developed a new theoretical framework that bridges physics and biology to provide a unified approach for understanding how complexity and evolution emerge in nature.

Health - Life Sciences - 29.09.2023
Autistic individuals have increased risk of chronic physical health conditions across the whole body
Autistic individuals have increased risk of chronic physical health conditions across the whole body
Autistic people have higher rates of chronic physical health conditions across the whole body and are more likely to have complex health needs, according to a study led by researchers at the University of Cambridge. Their findings, published in the journal  Molecular Autism , have important implications for the clinical care of autistic people.

Life Sciences - Psychology - 28.09.2023
Doll play allows children to develop and practice social skills regardless of their neurodevelopmental profile
Neuroscientists from Cardiff University have found that doll play could benefit children with varying social communication styles, including those who display neurodivergent traits commonly associated with autism. Part of a long-term study commissioned by Mattel, researchers monitored the brain activity of 57 children aged 4 to 8 years with varying levels of autistic traits.

Health - Life Sciences - 27.09.2023
AI-driven techniques reveal new targets for drug discovery
Researchers have developed a method to identify new targets for human disease, including neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer's disease. The discovery of protein phase separation opens up new opportunities for drug discovery Michele Vendruscolo The research team, led by the University of Cambridge, presented an approach to identify therapeutic targets for human diseases associated with a phenomenon known as protein phase separation, a recently discovered phenomenon widely present in cells that drives a variety of important biological functions.

Life Sciences - Health - 27.09.2023
'Anti-tangle' molecule could aid search for new dementia treatments, say scientists
’Anti-tangle’ molecule could aid search for new dementia treatments, say scientists
A team of scientists from Bath and Bristol have identified a protein fragment that could be a template for new therapeutics for dementia. Published on Wednesday 27 September 2023 Last updated on Wednesday 27 September 2023 Scientists have identified a molecule that can prevent tangling of a brain protein that is linked to diseases such as Parkinson's.

Health - Life Sciences - 25.09.2023
Nanopore sequencing and DNA barcoding method gives hope of personalised medicine
Nanopore sequencing and DNA barcoding method gives hope of personalised medicine
With the ability to map dozens of biomarkers at once, a new method could transform testing for conditions including heart disease and cancer. Currently, many diseases are diagnosed from blood tests that look for one biomarker (such as a protein or other small molecule) or, at most, a couple of biomarkers of the same type.

Life Sciences - Pharmacology - 25.09.2023
Brain imaging tool falls short for human tissue
A common research tool used to measure brain inflammation and test new dementia drugs may not be as helpful as scientists had hoped. In clinical research, scientists use a type of imaging called positron emission tomography (PET) to gain a detailed view of what's happening in the brain. One of the markers targeted by scans, called translocator protein (TSPO), has long been used to measure inflammation driven by microglia - the specialised immune cells in the brain which respond to damage and disease.

Health - Life Sciences - 23.09.2023
Longer-term organ abnormalities confirmed in some post-hospitalised COVID patients
A study looking at the longer-term impact of COVID-19 has found that nearly a third of patients displayed abnormalities in multiple organs five months after infection, some of which have been shown through previous work to be evidence of tissue damage. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans of patients on the trial showed a higher burden of abnormal findings involving the lungs, brain and kidneys compared to controls.

Life Sciences - 21.09.2023
Getting ready for bed controlled by specific brain wiring in mice
Getting ready for bed controlled by specific brain wiring in mice
Researchers have discovered the brain pathways involved in 'sleep preparatory behaviour' in mice, which is likely to also apply to humans. The team, led by Imperial College London researchers, uncovered the wiring in mouse brains that leads them to begin nesting in preparation for sleep. Published today in Nature Neuroscience , the study reveals that preparing properly for sleep is likely a hard-wired survival feature - one often neglected or overridden by humans.

Life Sciences - Paleontology - 20.09.2023
Prehistoric fish fills 100 million year gap in evolution of the skull
Prehistoric fish fills 100 million year gap in evolution of the skull
X-rays of an ancient jawless fish shows earliest-known example of internal cartilage skull, unlike that of any other known vertebrate. A 455-million-year-old fossil fish provides a new perspective on how vertebrates evolved to protect their brains, a study has found. In a paper published in Nature today (Wednesday 20 September), researchers from the University of Birmingham, Naturalis Biodiversity Centre in Leiden, Netherlands; and the Natural History Museum have pieced together the skull of Eriptychius americanus.
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