Microparticles could help fight malnutrition

New strategy for encapsulating nutrients makes it easier to fortify foods with iron and vitamin A. Anne Trafton | MIT News OfficeNovember 13, 2019 About 2 billion people around the world suffer from deficiencies of key micronutrients such as iron and vitamin A. Two million children die from these deficiencies every year, and people who […]

Double-sided tape for tissues could replace surgical sutures

New adhesive that binds wet surfaces within seconds could be used to heal wounds or implant medical devices. Anne Trafton | MIT News OfficeOctober 30, 2019 Inspired by a sticky substance that spiders use to catch their prey, MIT engineers have designed a double-sided tape that can rapidly seal tissues together. In tests in rats […]

Cell stiffness may indicate whether tumors will invade

Study shows tumors with softer, larger cells at their periphery are more likely to spread; may suggest new route for cancer therapy. Jennifer Chu | MIT News OfficeOctober 21, 2019 Engineers at MIT and elsewhere have tracked the evolution of individual cells within an initially benign tumor, showing how the physical properties of those cells […]

Drug combination reverses hypersensitivity to noise

Findings in mice suggest targeting certain brain circuits could offer new ways to treat some neurological disorders. Anne Trafton | MIT News OfficeOctober 21, 2019 People with autism often experience hypersensitivity to noise and other sensory input. MIT neuroscientists have now identified two brain circuits that help tune out distracting sensory information, and they have […]

Whitehead Institute team resolves structure of master growth regulator

New research reveals how mTORC1 docks at lysosomal surface. Nicole Davis | Whitehead InstituteOctober 18, 2019 A team of Whitehead Institute scientists has for the first time revealed the molecular structure of a critical growth regulator bound to its partner proteins, creating a fine-grained view of how they interact to sense nutrient levels and control […]

Imaging combined with genetic screening of cells enhances genomic discoveries

New image-based genetic screening method helps researchers identify key regulators of inflammation. Namrata Sengupta | Broad InstituteOctober 17, 2019 The following press release was issued today by the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. Scientists routinely use genetic screens to perturb, or change the activity of, genes in mammalian cells, one at a time, to […]

Drug that blocks blood vessel growth could treat rare sarcomas

An experimental targeted drug could treat a rare type of cancer usually affecting the limbs, a clinical trial led by The Institute of Cancer Research, London, has shown. OCTOBER 16, 2019 by Institute of Cancer Research The important trial could lead to a much-needed new treatment for patients with alveolar soft part sarcoma (ASPS), which tends […]

Study reveals how mucus tames microbes

Specialized sugar molecules called glycans can disarm opportunistic pathogens and prevent infection. Anne Trafton | MIT News OfficeOctober 14, 2019 More than 200 square meters of our bodies — including the digestive tract, lungs, and urinary tract — are lined with mucus. In recent years, scientists have found some evidence that mucus is not just […]

Seeing the brain’s electrical activity

Fluorescent sensor allows imaging of neurons’ electrical communications, without electrodes. Anne Trafton | MIT News Office Neurons in the brain communicate via rapid electrical impulses that allow the brain to coordinate behavior, sensation, thoughts, and emotion. Scientists who want to study this electrical activity usually measure these signals with electrodes inserted into the brain, a […]

New method visualizes groups of neurons as they compute

Fluorescent probe could allow scientists to watch circuits within the brain and link their activity to specific behaviors. Anne Trafton | MIT News OfficeOctober 9, 2019 Using a fluorescent probe that lights up when brain cells are electrically active, MIT and Boston University researchers have shown that they can image the activity of many neurons […]