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  • DNA methylation

    All somatic cells of a body have the same genome. But each of them can present a different gene expression profile depending on the epigenetic marks that, acting as molecular switches, activate or deactivate these sequences. These regulatory systems, globally known as the epigenome, include the chemical modification of the genetic fragments and the histones, or changes in the accessibility and make-up of the DNA.

  • Biosphere

    Five years ago, a team of Australian researchers developed a device that was destined to revolutionize regenerative medicine. Their invention, which they called the BioPen, consisted of a “pen” designed to deposit stem cells and growth factors inside a biopolymer to repair the bones and cartilage of patients who had suffered trauma, for example a traffic accident.

  • Heart organ

    As occurs with arteriosclerosis, in which deposits of cholesterol, fat and other substances gradually form plaque in the arteries and constrict blood flow, heart valves can also suffer problems over time. One of the most significant is calcific aortic valve disease (CAVD) which, as its name indicates, consists of the deposition of calcium in the aortic valve of this vital organ.

  • Body weight scale

    Obesity is a serious public health problem around the world. According to data from the World Health Organization, 39% of people over eighteen are overweight, of which over 650 million were obese in 2016.

  • DNA molecules

    Last April 14 marked the fifteenth anniversary of the Human Genome Project’s completion. This initiative made for a turning point in the history of biology: while in 1990 somewhat less than a hundred genes related with diseases were known, by 2003 this figure had risen to some 1,400 genetic sequences.

  • Red blood cells

    Blood cells are considered to be excellent ex vivo models for the characterization of diseases and in the determination of the beneficial or toxic effects of possible treatments. The results of numerous research projects over recent years, through which researchers have developed biomarkers of interest in different pathologies, make up the evidence behind this assertion.

  • Medicine capsules and tablets

    A decade ago, the European Union and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations promoted the creation of the Innovative Medicines Initiative, with the aim of developing increasingly efficacious and safe drugs. Financing first came from the Seventh Framework Program of the European Union, and later from the Horizon 2020 Framework Program.

  • Genome editing with CRISPR-Cas

    In 2012, scientists Jennifer Doudna and Emmanuelle Charpentier published an article in Science discussing the possibility of using the CRISPR-Cas system to edit the genome. Their work, supported by Feng Zhang’s later studies, showed that DNA could be quickly, efficiently safely modified thanks to a number of tools discovered in different types of microorganisms, including bacteria and archaea, at the end of the 1980's.

  • Microbial Anatomy of a Lung

    A team of University of California scientists have developed an open-source tool for 3-D imaging of microbiome and metabolome data directly from organs. Their results, published in Cell Host & Microbe, help scientists understand the effect that some compounds, like microbial metabolites and drugs, have on a diseased organ.

  • Scanning electron micrograph showing Salmonella Typhimurium invading human cells.

    The excessive prescribing of antibiotics, their overuse in livestock raising or aquiculture, patients' failure to complete their treatments, lack of research into new drugs or hygiene and infection control problems in hospital settings are the main causes of antimicrobial resistance. The estimates made by the government of the United Kingdom indicate that by 2050, the deaths caused by resistant bacteria could reach 10 million, 1.8 million more than those caused by cancer.