Radioisotope couple for tumor diagnosis and therapy

Researchers at Kanazawa University report a promising combination of radioisotope-carrying molecules for use in radiotheranostics — a diagnosis and treatment approach based on the combination of medical imaging and internal radiation therapy with radioactive elements. Read more.

Study Shows How Prostate Cancer Cells Mimic Osteoblasts

As prostate cancer expands to reach the bones, it often becomes fatal. The process at the back of this fatal element might possibly be used against this cancer type as an objective in bone-targeting radiation and possible novel therapies. In a new study, researchers from the Duke Cancer Institute described how prostate cancer cells develop their ability to imitate bone-forming cells named osteoblasts. This quality enables the cancer-causing cells to grow in the bone microenvironment. Read more.

More 'reactive' land surfaces cooled the Earth down

There have been long periods of cooling in Earth’s history. Temperatures had already fallen for more than 10 million years before the last ice age began about 2.5 million years ago. At that time, the northern hemisphere was covered with massive ice masses and glaciers. A geoscientific paradigm, widespread for over 20 years, explains this cooling with the formation of the large mountain ranges such as the Andes, the Himalayas and the Alps. As a result, more rock weathering has taken place, the paradigm suggests. This in turn removed more carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere, so that the greenhouse effect decreased and the atmosphere cooled. This and other processes eventually led to the ice Age. Read more.

Marine Biologists Identify First Narwhal-Beluga Hybrid

Narwhals (Monodon monoceros) and beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas) are medium-sized toothed whales and the sole representatives of the Monodontidae family. They are the only toothed whales endemic to the Arctic region. While they are each other’s closest relatives and roughly equal in size, these two species differ in their morphology and behavior. Now, a series of DNA and stable isotope analyses of an anomalous toothed whale skull has allowed researchers to confirm that the two species can interbreed successfully. Read more.

Symbiotic upcycling: Turning ‘low value’ compounds into biomass

Plants use light energy from the sun for photosynthesis to turn carbon dioxide (CO2) into biomass. Animals can’t do that. Therefore, some of them have teamed up with bacteria that carry out a process called chemosynthesis. It works almost like photosynthesis, only that it uses chemical energy instead of light energy. Many animals rely on chemosynthetic bacteria to supply them with food. The symbionts turn CO2 into biomass and are subsequently digested by their host. Kentron, a bacterium nourishing the ciliate Kentrophoros, was thought to be ‘just another’ chemosynthetic symbiont. However, recent results indicate that it is not. Read more.