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Tag: Department of Biology

Do naked mole rats hold the key to defeating cancer? Ugly rodents produce hybrid protein that prevents tumour growth

Do naked mole rats hold the key to defeating cancer? Ugly rodents produce hybrid protein that prevents tumour growth

February 5, 2015

The researchers hope it may now be possible to use this newly discovered protein to develop new treatments that can help stop cancers from spreading or even developing in the first place.

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An extra protein gives naked mole rats more power to stop cancer

An extra protein gives naked mole rats more power to stop cancer

February 4, 2015

Naked mole rats are small, hairless, subterranean rodents that have never been known to get cancer despite having a 30-year lifespan. A new protein discovered by biologist Vera Gorbunova may help explain why.

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Connections: Science Roundtable

Connections: Science Roundtable

October 6, 2014

We check in with the research world’s biggest star, the naked mole rat. What are we learning about the science of aging, and curing disease?

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Parasitic DNA stops “jumping” when protein takes charge

Parasitic DNA stops “jumping” when protein takes charge

September 23, 2014

Biology researchers Vera Gorbunova and Andrei Seluanov report that the “jumping genes” in mice become active as the mice age when a multi-function protein stops keeping them in check in order to take on another role. A protein called Sirt6 is needed to keep the jumping genes—technically known as retrotransposons—inactive.

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Absurd Creature of the Week: The naked mole rat could one day save your life

Absurd Creature of the Week: The naked mole rat could one day save your life

September 12, 2014

Biologist Vera Gorbunova studies these creatures at the University of Rochester. She says naked mole rat societies, which can reach 300 individuals, are more like dictatorships than monarchies because anyone with the gumption can ascend the throne.

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Less effective DNA repair process takes over as mice age, biologists find

Less effective DNA repair process takes over as mice age, biologists find

September 9, 2014

Biologists Vera Gorbunova and Andei Seluanov have discovered one reason for the the increase in DNA damage as we age: the primary repair process begins to fail and is replaced by one that is less accurate.

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Targeting protein-making machinery to stop harmful bacteria

Targeting protein-making machinery to stop harmful bacteria

September 7, 2014

One challenge in killing off harmful bacteria is that many of them develop a resistance to antibiotics. Researchers at the University of Rochester are targeting the formation of the protein-making machinery in those cells as a possible alternate way to stop the bacteria.

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Targeting cells’ protein-making machinery may stop harmful bacteria

Targeting cells’ protein-making machinery may stop harmful bacteria

September 7, 2014

For the first time, the middle-steps in the process that creates the protein-making machinery of bacterial cells—called the ribosomes—has been isolated. A new study by biologist Gloria Culver suggests that blocking these pathways may help kill off drug-resistant bacteria.

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Alternate mechanism of species formation picks up support, thanks to a South American ant

Alternate mechanism of species formation picks up support, thanks to a South American ant

August 22, 2014

Pictured at left is the queen ant of the parasitic species Mycocepurus castrator. This ant, only found in a single patch of eucalyptus trees on the São Paulo State University campus in Brazil, branched off from its original species while living in the same colony, something thought rare in current models of evolutionary development.

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Alternate mechanism of species formation picks up support,  thanks to a South American ant

Alternate mechanism of species formation picks up support, thanks to a South American ant

August 21, 2014

A newly-discovered species of ant supports a controversial theory of species formation. “Most new species come about in geographic isolation,” said Christian Rabeling, assistant professor of biology at the University of Rochester. “We now have evidence that speciation can take place within a single colony.”

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