The past few years has seen an explosion in the number of studies using organoids – so-called ‘mini organs’. While they can help scientists understand human biology and disease, some in the field have questioned their usefulness. But as the field matures, we could see their increasing use in personalised and regenerative medicine.
Scientists have shown in mice that skin cells re-programmed into brain stem cells, transplanted into the central nervous system, help reduce inflammation and may be able to help repair damage caused by multiple sclerosis (MS).
An international team of scientists has identified the neural circuits that enable cuttlefish to change their appearance in just the blink to eye – and discovered that this is similar to the neural circuit that controls iridescence in squids.
Research from the University of Cambridge has revealed that, among schooling fish, groups can have different collective personalities, with some shoals sticking closer together, being better coordinated, and showing clearer leadership than others.
Sheep can be trained to recognise human faces from photographic portraits – and can even identify the picture of their handler without prior training – according to new research from scientists at the University of Cambridge.
As part of the ongoing commitment to greater openness about animal research, the ten universities which conduct the most animal procedures have publicised their figures today, revealing that they collectively conducted a third of all UK animal research in 2016. All ten universities appear in the QS World University Ranking Top 100.
Skin plays a surprising role in helping regulate blood pressure and heart rate, according to scientists at the University of Cambridge and the Karolinska Institute, Sweden. While this discovery was made in mice, the researchers believe it is likely to be true also in humans.
In the centenary year of the publication of a seminal treatise on the physical and mathematical principles underpinning nature – On Growth and Form by D’Arcy Wentworth Thompson – a Cambridge physicist has led a study describing an elegantly simple solution to a puzzle that has taxed biologists for centuries: how complex branching patterns of tissues arise.
Smoking, lack of exercise, bad diet and our genes are all well-known risk factors for heart disease, cancer and diabetes. But, as researchers are beginning to understand, the environment in the womb as we first begin to grow may also determine our future.
Scientists at the University of Cambridge will this week begin studying sheep that have been genetically modified to carry the mutation that causes Huntington’s disease. The sheep are believed to be the first Merinos to have been imported into the UK from Australia for about 50 years.