The Orphan, the Mouse and the Oligodendrocyte

Oligodendrocyte

Or, The story of a lonely brain   (Originally published on Scientific American.com) Prologue: Humans are born to a longer period of total dependence than any other animal we know of, and we also know that mistreatment or neglect during this time often leads to social, emotional, cognitive and mental health problems in later life…. (read more)

Stem cell cure for deafness

Here’s a news piece about an exciting research breakthrough on a possible future stem cell-based cure for deafness: (originally published on 24n.biz):   Researchers at the University of Sheffield have restored hearing in deafened gerbils by transplanting auditory neurons obtained from stem cells into their cochleae – the part of the inner ear that converts… (read more)

What’s all this fuss about bird flu research?

In February the World Health Organisation (WHO) held a meeting in Geneva to discuss the fate of two papers describing the mutation of H5N1 avian influenza viruses into forms more easily transmitted between mammals. Both studies induced mutations that enabled the virus to transmit more effectively between ferrets because transmission in ferrets is believed to… (read more)