Regular readers of this blog will no doubt have heard of Drosophila melanogaster, the fly that has played a key role in important discoveries about skin cancer, the innate immune system and the development of tissues, but we’ve never really given this tiny superstar of science enough prominence on this blog. To help correct this … Continue reading The Portrait of a Superstar of Science – Drosophila melanogaster
A study published yesterday in the journal Science, in which a team of scientists led by Professor Gregoire Courtine at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology used a combination of electrical stimulation, drug treatment and a training regime that encouraged active participation to restore voluntary control of movement in paralysed rats, has received widespread media … Continue reading Swiss scientists restore voluntary locomotion in paralysed rats.
Paralysis can have tremendous negative consequences for a person's quality of life. In the US alone, there are more than 200 thousand people living with chronic spinal cord injury, which is a cause of immense suffering to them and their families. The disease generates economic burden for society as well. Thus, there has been … Continue reading Not Difficult To Grasp
Developmental biology, the study of the processes through which organisms grow and develop, is an area of biomedical research where modal organisms - ranging from the slime mold Dictyostelium discoideum to the chicken - play a crucial role, and one that has been honoured with several Nobel Prizes in recent years. For example, the 1995 … Continue reading How nerve cells reach their niche.
Yesterday an article appeared in the New York Times describing how scientists, supported by the National Institutes of Health and the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, have used electrical stimulation of the lower spinal cord to enable a man who had been completely paralyzed below chest level to stand again, and even to take steps … Continue reading A paralyzed man stands again…thanks to animal research!