Bumetanide – a prescription drug for oedema (the build-up of fluid in the body) – improves some of the symptoms in young children with autism spectrum disorders and has no significant side effects, confirms a new study from researchers in China and the UK. Published today in Translational Psychiatry, the study demonstrates for the first time that the drug improves the symptoms by decreasing the ratio of the GABA to glutamate in the brain. GABA and glutamate are both neurotransmitters – chemical messengers that help nerve cells in the brain communicate.
Professor Laura Itzhaki is a group leader in the Department of Pharmacology and a Fellow of Newnham College. Here, she tells us about forming her own spin-out company, pitching to investors and her research on the 'workhorses' of the cell.
Animal pollinators support the production of three-quarters of the world’s food crops, and many flowers produce nectar to reward the pollinators. A new study using bumblebees has found that the sweetest nectar is not necessarily the best: too much sugar slows down the bees. The results will inform breeding efforts to make crops more attractive to pollinators, boosting yields to feed our growing global population.
A new type of scan that involves magnetising molecules allows doctors to see in real-time which regions of a breast tumour are active, according to research at the University of Cambridge and published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Around 90% of the resources we process to create goods are not reaching the person for whom they are made. How can we make manufacturing more sustainable?
Material falling into a black hole casts X-rays out into space – and now astronomers have used the echoes of this radiation to map the dynamic behaviour and surroundings of a black hole itself.
Leaving school and getting a job both lead to a drop in the amount of physical activity, while becoming a mother is linked to increased weight gain, conclude two reviews published today and led by researchers at the University of Cambridge.
River flow is reduced in areas where forests have been planted and does not recover over time, a new study has shown. Rivers in some regions can completely disappear within a decade. This highlights the need to consider the impact on regional water availability, as well as the wider climate benefit, of tree-planting plans.
Students and teachers across India now have free access to a new curriculum on water security and sustainability, co-developed by researchers at the University of Cambridge, which incorporates engagement with climate change and climate activism into their lessons.