Biology

Seed size and its rate of evolution correlate with species diversification across angiosperms

Angiosperms are one of the most species-rich clades on Earth and have dominated terrestrial plant communities since the Late Cretaceous Period. The astounding diversity of flowering plants is distributed extremely unevenly across the Tree of Life (ToL). Each of the 5 most species-rich angiosperm families contains more than 10,000 species, while more than 200 families contain less than 100 species each.

Reduced insulin signaling maintains electrical transmission in a neural circuit in aging flies

Synapses undergo age-associated morphological and functional changes in a number of model organisms and in humans. In the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and the worm Caenorhabditis elegans, synaptic changes were seen during normal aging in both central and peripheral parts of the nervous system and linked to cognition, memory, learning, locomotor, and homeostatic deficits.

Uncovering Zika

This research focuses on creating a novel rapid diagnostic test for Zika Virus NS1 protein using nanoribbon microfluidics.

Pancreatic Cancer Cells during Metastatic Progression

Our research focused on the detection of premalignant pancreatic cancer via computational analysis of serum proteomic profiles.

Proteolytic Origin of the Soluble Human IL-6R In Vivo and a Decisive Role of N-Glycosylation

Interleukin-6 (IL-6) is a pleiotropic cytokine with important functions in many physiological and pathophysiological conditions. IL-6 activates intracellular signaling cascades through a homodimer of the ubiquitously expressed β-receptor glycoprotein 130 (gp130) but first has to bind to its nonsignaling alpha receptor (IL-6R). The IL-6R is expressed in a cell- and tissue-specific manner and only found on hepatocytes and some leukocytes like neutrophils and T cells.

The Effects of Tributyltin on the Marine Environment

Pollutants that resist breakdown and accumulate in the food chain are of great concern because they are consumed or absorbed by fish and other marine wildlife, which in turn are consumed by humans (NOAA, 2003). One of the most dangerous and controversial contaminants today is tributyltin (TBT). Tributyltin is one of the most poisonous substances to be released to the aquatic environment (Knutzen, 1995). It is used in many of the world’s marine paints to keep barnacles, seaweed, and other organisms from clinging to ships.

Extracellular phosphorylation of a receptor tyrosine kinase controls synaptic localization of NMDA receptors and regulates pathological pain

Modification of protein function by phosphorylation controls many aspects of cellular function and signaling. Interestingly, the first evidence for phosphoproteins came from the observation that the secreted milk protein, casein, contained phosphate, suggesting that phosphorylation can occur in the extracellular space.

Persistent Organic Pollutants

Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) are an environmental and health threat to oceanic and land creatures as well as humans. They are man-made substances that are primarily carried through air and water currents. POPs settle in colder climates in the Arctic, such as Alaska where the temperatures reach below freezing. The contaminants rest there for long periods of time because the cold climate prevents them from breaking down. This is the main reason why POPs transfer from water to soil to plants onto animals and into humans.

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