October 2013

mRNA: in the right place at the right time

In a minireview in The Journal of Biological Chemistry, Carolina Eliscovich, Adina Buxbaum, Zachary Katz and Robert Singer at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University explain the importance of localizing elements of mRNA sequences and how advanced biochemical and cell-imaging techniques are being used to better understand mRNA movement.


Thematic review series: redox-active protein modifications and signaling

The Journal of Biological Chemistry’s recent series of thematic minireviews, organized by Associate Editor Ruma Banerjee at the University of Michigan Medical School, is a return to basics: a reminder that the cell accomplishes tasks of great complexity by keeping things simple.


Metabolism-generated signaling in innate immunity and inflammation

ASBMB's senior science policy fellow, Chris Pickett, writes of a recent JBC minireview investigating how the innate immune-response system, the first-responder mechanism against invading pathogens, is coupled to metabolic signaling. This research has implications for understanding the progression of type 2 diabetes, atherosclerosis and other metabolic disorders.


New antibody-based test for detecting tuberculosis infection

In an article in the October issue of the Journal of Lipid Research, researchers in Singapore report the development of a new antibody-based method for detecting Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the causative agent of tuberculosis infection. Mycolic acid, whose long fatty acids are the main component of M. tuberculosis’ bacterial cell wall, is found in infected patients’ sputum and appears to be the perfect target for such an assay.


On mitochondrial DNA, mating and mussels

In humans and most other animals, offspring get all their mitochondrial DNA from their mothers. But in mussels and other related bivalves, fathers also give their offspring their mitochondrial DNA. In a recent paper in the journal Molecular & Cellular Proteomics, researchers propose a new model to explain this mechanism of mitochondrial DNA inheritance, which is called doubly uniparental inheritance, or DUI. The model also puts forward a possible explanation for sex determination in mussels, the mechanisms of which are not known.

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