News Feed

Mandatory labels reduce GMO food fears

Mandatory labels reduce GMO food fears
As national regulators work to develop labeling standards for foods containing genetically modified ingredients, a researcher finds that consumer opposition to GMOs dropped significantly after Vermont adopted mandatory labels.

Source: Sciencedaily

Genetic structure of painted bunting identified

Genetic structure of painted bunting identified
Biologists have identified the genetic structure of the Painted Bunting, a neotropical migratory songbird, using microsatellite DNA and single nucleotide polymorphisms to develop high-resolution markers to differentiate between individual birds breeding in different Oklahoma populations and across the United States. Through this research, scientists now can differentiate between the eastern and western Painted Buntings and identify the species pattern of migration and population of origin.

Source: Sciencedaily

Large scale study identifies core microbial community for maize rhizosphere

Large scale study identifies core microbial community for maize rhizosphere
A plant’s health is affected not only by conditions such as water and temperature, but by the microorganisms that live around its roots. The rhizosphere microbiome, as this microbial community is known, regulates nutrient availability to the plant from the soil, and can impact plant growth and yields.

Source: Phys.org

Novel Alcoholism Treatment Modulates GPCR Activation, May Lessen Withdrawal Symptoms

Novel Alcoholism Treatment Modulates GPCR Activation, May Lessen Withdrawal Symptoms
Scientists at the Scripps Research Institute say activating a receptor found in brain cells may help treat alcohol addiction and ease some withdrawal symptoms. The researchers studied the effects of activating the receptor in alcohol-addicted rats and reported the results (“ Systemic and Intra-Habenular Activation of the Orphan G Protein-Coupled Receptor GPR139 Decreases Compulsive-Like Alcohol Drinking and Hyperalgesia in Alcohol-Dependent Rats ”) in  eNeuro .

“The modulation of GPR139 receptor function has been hypothesized to be beneficial in the treatment of some mental disorders, but behavioral studies have not yet provided causal evidence of the role of GPR139 in brain dysfunction. Because of the high expression of GPR139 in the habenula, a critical brain region in addiction, we hypothesized that GPR139 may play role in alcohol dependence. Thus, we tested the effect of GPR139 receptor activation using the selective, brain-penetrant receptor agonist JNJ-63533054 on addiction-like behaviors in …

Source: Genengnews

Editing Autism Gene with Nano-CRISPR Curbs Repetitive Behaviors

Editing Autism Gene with Nano-CRISPR Curbs Repetitive Behaviors
Technologies that can edit genes within the brain have the potential to revolutionize how we treat neurological disorders, and also generate new insights into brain function.  To date, attempts to use clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-Cas9 gene editing in the brain has relied on viral delivery of the Cas9 enzyme, but this approach is challenging. Researchers at the University of Texas (UT) Health Science Center at San Antonio, and the University of California, Berkeley, have now demonstrated use of nonviral CRISPR-Cas9 delivery system known as CRISPR-Gold to edit different cell types within the brain.

The team then used the CRISPR-Gold technology to target a single gene responsible for a form of autism known as fragile X syndrome (FXS), in a mouse model. They found that the treatment effectively rescued animals from the exaggerated repetitive behaviours that are symptomatic of the disorder.

The researchers, headed by …

Source: Genengnews