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THE BIOWORLD BIOME: Our Habitat for All Things Science

How the meek shall inherit the earth

Weak binding to a shallow pocket is not what most drug developers would consider characteristics of a viable drug lead, let alone a desirable one. But that type of binding may have cracked KRAS, which has long been one of the most intractable targets in oncology.

When and which

The April announcement of a biomarker-based diagnosis for Alzheimer's disease by the National Institute of Aging (NIA) and the Alzheimer's Association (AA) came with assurances that their recommendations were meant as a "research framework to investigate the Alzheimer's disease continuum, not as diagnostic criteria and explicitly not intended for clinical use."

HONG KONG – An international study led by the University of South Florida (USF) has revealed important new information regarding the critical genes of the deadly malarial parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, which could help investigators prioritize targets for future development of newer, more effective antimalarial drugs.

AAI 2018

AUSTIN, Texas – Indication is in the eye of the beholder.

HONG KONG – An artificial compound derived from vitamin A, acyclic retinoid (ACR), has been shown to selectively target cancer stem cells (CSCs) and reduce the post-therapeutic recurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in a new study and is currently in phase III trials for that indication in Asia.

Experimental Biology 2018

SAN DIEGO – Collectively, G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are a treasure trove of drug targets. Somewhere between 30 and 50 percent of FDA-approved therapeutics are thought to work by targeting GPCRs.

HONG KONG – An antisense oligonucleotide (ASO) that induces skipping of exon 53 has been shown to have a favorable safety profile and promising pharmacokinetics in children with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) in a Japanese phase I trial. That warrants further study of the ASO in a phase II study, researchers led by Shin'ichi Takeda, director of the Department of Molecular Therapy National Institute of Neuroscience, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry (NCNP) in Tokyo, reported April 18, 2018, in Science Translational Medicine.

Quick repairs

Researchers have found that in the case of a mild concussion, damage to the lining of the brain was quickly repaired by the peripheral immune system, and once repaired, was no worse for wear in the face of a second injury.

How risk factors are risky

Researchers have identified infection with Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), best known for causing mononucleosis, as a risk factor for seven autoimmune diseases.

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