Author Archive

Unlocking the Structures of Natural Killer Cell Receptors with the NGC™ Chromatography System

Structural biologist Petr Novák employs the latest techniques to model natural killer cell receptor molecules, research that may one day result in powerful therapies to treat cancer and infections. Go inside the fascinating world of structural characterization and find out how Novák has integrated the NGC™ chromatography system into his effort to visualize these molecules in vivid detail.

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April 23, 2014 at 3:19 pm Leave a comment

CFI Awards over $23 Million Across Canada

Following fast on the heals of the Canadian Research Chair funding announcements earlier this month, the Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI) has awarded $23.4 Million to hundreds of projects across the country.

According to Ed Holder, Minister of State (Science and Technology)

Canadian researchers need state-of-the-art tools in order to undertake world-class research. Our government believes significant investment in these tools is essential to making scientific breakthroughs, which improve the lives of Canadians and increases economic prosperity.

The funds are dedicated to providing tools and infrastructure that allow leading researchers to continue expanding the frontiers of science, health, social sciences and humanities. An additional $7 million will be used to support the operational costs of this infrastructure.

The funding includes:

  • $1.9M to support 13 projects in Alberta
  • $3.6M to support 24 projects in British Columbia
  • $1M to support 4 projects in Manitoba
  • $546,000 to support 3 projects in New Brunswick
  • $324,000 to support 4 projects in New Foundland
  • $339,000 to support 3 projects in Nova Scodia
  • $5.9M to support 35 projects in Ontario
  • $9.1M to support 58 projects in Quebec
  • $557,000 to support 5 projects in Saskatchewan

To view the full list of funds visit Government of Canada invests in university research infrastructure

April 22, 2014 at 2:47 pm Leave a comment

Canadian molecular biologist holds art exhibition in Shanghai

As seen on the Wacky World of YouTube!

April 17, 2014 at 4:46 pm Leave a comment

Making the Invisible, Visible

The wonders of nature, visualized.

April 15, 2014 at 4:03 pm Leave a comment

Can blueberry extract prevent Parkinson’s?

Can blueberry extract prevent or reduce the effects of Parkinson’s? That’s what researchers at Memorial University are trying to figure out.

A new paper by David Lipsett and Dr. Brian Staveley of the Department of Biology suggests that a diet supplemented with blueberry extract may indeed have a positive impact on a fruit fly model of Parkinson Disease.

“Parkinson disease is the second most common progressive neurodegenerative disorder and is only surpassed in frequency by Alzheimer disease,” he said. “Initially believed to be an entirely random disease, studies have identified alpha-synuclein as the first gene related to Parkinson’s.”

Alpha-synuclein is a protein abundant in the human brain, found mainly at the tips of nerve cells, or neurons, in specialized structures called presynaptic terminals. These terminals release chemical messengers called neurotransmitters, which relay signals between neurons and is critical for normal brain function.

Although the function of this gene is not well understood, studies suggest that it plays an important role in regulating the release of dopamine, a type of neurotransmitter critical for controlling the start and stop of voluntary and involuntary movements.

“This gene is proven to be the cause of inherited Parkinson disease in human families that have more of the gene, or an unusual form of it,” said Dr. Staveley. “We’ve taken that gene and put it in fruit flies and found that causes a few defects including decreased lifespan and retinal degeneration.”

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April 14, 2014 at 6:36 am Leave a comment

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