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Pollination Patterns by Green-Backed Firecrown Hummingbirds

Freeland et al. | May 28, 2020

Pollination Patterns by Green-Backed Firecrown Hummingbirds

The Green-backed Firecrown hummingbird is an essential pollinator in the temperate rainforests of southern South America. However, little is known about the ecology of these birds. Authors examined the foraging patterns of these birds identifying interesting differences in foraging patterns among season, age and sex.

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Antibacterial Effects of Copper Surfaces

Mulukutla et al. | May 19, 2020

Antibacterial Effects of Copper Surfaces

This study examined the ability of copper and copper alloy surfaces to inhibit bacterial growth, which may be help prevent healthcare-associated infections. The authors exposed two non-pathogenic strains of bacteria to different metal plates for varying degrees of time and measured bacterial growth.

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The Effect of Different Fructose Diets on the Lifespan of C. elegans

Chen et al. | May 10, 2020

The Effect of Different Fructose Diets on the Lifespan of <em>C. elegans</em>

High-fructose diets consumed widely in modern societies predisposes to metabolic diseases such as diabetes. Using the worm C. elegans, the authors of this study investigated the effect of fructose on the worm's survival rates. They found that worms fed 15% fructose had a lower life expectancy than those on a fructose-free diet. These results suggest that, like in humans, fructose has a negative effect on worm survival, which makes them an easy, attractive model to study the effects of fructose on health.

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The Effects of Ezetimibe on Triglyceride and Alanine Transaminase Reduction in Drosophila Melanogaster Model of Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD)

Dania et al. | Apr 30, 2020

The Effects of Ezetimibe on Triglyceride and Alanine Transaminase Reduction in <i>Drosophila Melanogaster</i> Model of Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD)

Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) is a condition where a surplus of triglycerides or fat are present in the liver. In this study, ezetimibe, a cholesterol lowering drug, was used to treat flies modeling NAFLD. Compared to the coconut oil fed flies that were transferred to the control medium, the flies transferred to the control medium treated with ezetimibe showed a decrease in their triglyceride and alanine transaminase level.

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Analysis of Monotherapy and Combination Therapy on Helicobacter felis

Custodio et al. | Apr 28, 2020

Analysis of Monotherapy and Combination Therapy on <em>Helicobacter felis</em>

Heliobacter felis causes gastritis which is accompanied by a range of unpleasant symptoms in small animals such as cats. In order to identify effective antibiotics for treating H. felis infections, the researchers investigate whether a combination of different antibiotics is more effective than the use of individual antibiotics alone. Of the antibiotics they selected, Streptomycin alone was better than any other single antibiotic or in combination. Their results have not yet been validated in live animals, but suggest that Streptomycin alone might be an effective treatment of H. felis-induced gastritis in cats.

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Herbal Extracts Alter Amyloid Beta Levels in SH-SY5Y Neuroblastoma Cells

Xu et al. | Feb 25, 2020

Herbal Extracts Alter Amyloid Beta Levels in SH-SY5Y Neuroblastoma Cells

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a type of dementia that affects more than 5.5 million Americans, and there are no approved treatments that can delay the advancement of the disease. In this work, Xu and Mitchell test the effects of various herbal extracts (bugleweed, hops, sassafras, and white camphor) on Aβ1-40 peptide levels in human neuroblastoma cells. Their results suggest that bugleweed may have the potential to reduce Aβ1-40 levels through its anti-inflammatory properties.

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Temperatures of 20°C Produce Increased Net Primary Production in Chlorella sp.

Biddinger et al. | Feb 25, 2020

Temperatures of 20°C Produce Increased Net Primary Production in <em>Chlorella sp.</em>

Chlorella sp. are unicellular green algae that use photosynthesis to reduce carbon dioxide into glucose. In this study, authors sought to determine the temperature that Chlorella sp. is maximally efficient at photosynthesis, and therefore removing the most carbon dioxide from the system. This activity could be harnessed to naturally remove carbon dioxide from the environment, fighting the effects of climate change.

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Investigating the Role of the Novel ESCRT-III Recruitment Factor CCDC11 in HIV Budding: A Potential Target for Antiviral Therapy

Takemaru et al. | Feb 24, 2020

Investigating the Role of the Novel ESCRT-III Recruitment Factor CCDC11 in HIV Budding: A Potential Target for Antiviral Therapy

Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) is a life-threatening condition caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). In this work, Takemaru et al explored the role of Coiled-Coil Domain-Containing 11 (CCDC11) in HIV-1 budding. Their results suggest that CCDC11 is critical for efficient HIV-1 budding, potentially indicating CCDC11 a viable target for antiviral therapeutics without major side effects.

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Conversion of Mesenchymal Stem Cells to Cancer-Associated Fibroblasts in a Tumor Microenvironment: An in vitro Study

Ramesh et al. | Feb 18, 2020

Conversion of Mesenchymal Stem Cells to Cancer-Associated Fibroblasts in a Tumor Microenvironment: An <em>in vitro</em> Study

Mesenchymal stem cells(MSCs) play a role in tumor formation by differentiating into cancer associated fibroblasts (CAFs) which enable metastasis of tumors. The process of conversion of MSCs into CAFs is not clear. In this study, authors tested the hypothesis that cancers cells secrete soluble factors that induce differentiation by culturing bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells in media conditioned by a breast cancer cell line.

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