Study clears important hurdle towards developing an HIV vaccine

13 Sep 2017

An international team of researchers has demonstrated a way of overcoming one of the major stumbling blocks that has prevented the development of a vaccine against HIV: the ability to generate immune cells that stay in circulation long enough to respond to and stop virus infection.

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Leprosy turns the immune system against itself, study finds

23 Aug 2017

Leprosy hijacks our immune system, turning an important repair mechanism into one that causes potentially irreparable damage to our nerve cells, according to new research that uses zebrafish to study the disease. As such, the disease may share common characteristics with conditions such as multiple sclerosis.

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‘Clogged-up’ immune cells help explain smoking risk for TB

24 Mar 2016

Smoking increases an individual’s risk of developing tuberculosis (TB) – and makes the infection worse – because it causes vital immune cells to become clogged up, slowing their movement and impeding their ability to fight infection, according to new research published in the journal Cell.

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‘Good’ cholesterol doesn’t always lower heart attack risk

11 Mar 2016

Some people with high levels of ‘good’ high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) are at increased risk of coronary heart disease, contrary to earlier evidence that people with more HDL-C are usually at lower heart disease risk. This finding comes from an international study involving researchers at the University of Cambridge, funded by the British Heart Foundation (BHF).

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Baby gorilla

Mountain gorilla genome study provides optimism about population numbers

09 Apr 2015

An international research project to sequence whole genomes from mountain gorillas has given scientists and conservationists new insight into the impact of population decline on these critically endangered apes. While mountain gorillas are extensively inbred and at risk of extinction, research published today in Science finds more to be optimistic about in their genomes than expected.

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Drugging the undruggable: discovery opens up possibility of slowing cancer spread

12 Nov 2014

A trawl through a library of more than 50,000 ‘small molecules’ has identified a potential candidate to inhibit the spread of cancer cells throughout the body. Reported today in the journal Nature Communications, the molecule targets a mechanism of tumour development that had previously been considered ‘undruggable’– in other words, extremely difficult, if not impossible, to target with a drug – and could open the door to further promising new candidates.

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