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Life Sciences - Health - 26.08.2022
New CRISPR-Cas system with on-off switch cuts proteins
Researchers from TU Delft in the group of Stan Brouns have discovered a CRISPR-Cas system that cuts proteins instead of DNA. The discovery opens the door to the development of a range of biotechnological and medical applications, for example for sensing RNA molecules in pathogens. Their research was published in Science yesterday.

Life Sciences - 25.08.2022
Cells: strong at the right place and time
Researchers from TU Delft and NWO institute AMOLF discovered how certain molecular bonds make living cells both flexible, in order to move, as well as strong, in order to withstand forces. Paradoxically, it turns out that these force-sensitive catch bonds are weak and inactive most of the time, but travel to specific places where and when cells become damaged.

Life Sciences - Health - 23.08.2022
Malaria parasite survives in mosquitoes
Malaria parasite survives in mosquitoes
Researchers from Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC) have discovered how malaria parasites escape the immune system of mosquitoes. The so-called QC enzyme changes proteins on the outside of the malaria parasite such that the immune cells are unable to recognise the parasite. As a result, the parasite can spread freely amongst humans via the mosquito.

Life Sciences - Psychology - 23.08.2022
Parents' DNA influence children's education through environment
Parents’ DNA influence children’s education through environment
Genetic research shows the environment associated with parents' cognitive and noncognitive skills influences offspring's education New research from the Netherlands Twin Register at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU Amsterdam) shows that parents- cognitive and non-cognitive skills both affect children's educational outcomes.

Health - Life Sciences - 18.08.2022
'Youngest' antibiotic kills bacteria via a new two-step mechanism
’Youngest’ antibiotic kills bacteria via a new two-step mechanism
Scientists at Utrecht University have discovered a new mechanism of how antibiotics kill bacteria. The antibiotic teixobactin uses a dual molecular strategy: it blocks the bacterial cell wall synthesis and destructs the cell membrane, the researchers write in the scientific journal Nature . The new insights could enable the design of powerful antibiotics against which bacteria do not readily develop resistance.

Life Sciences - Health - 15.08.2022
Neurological Disorders have significant impact on patients and health systems
Did you know that in Europe, Neurological Disorders (NDs), such as autism spectrum disorders and epilepsy, affect 41 million people? Their treatment accounts for 35% of the total disease burden in Europe, with a yearly cost of ¤798 billion. Would you be surprised to learn that, despite NDs significant impact on both patients and health systems, comprehensive treatments for NDs are lacking?

Life Sciences - 15.08.2022
TU Delft iGEM team aims to develop sensor to detect GHB in drinks
Someone may slip drugs into your drink without you noticing, after which you may not be able to think clearly. However, this kind of drugging can almost never be proven, because GHB disappears from the blood within 3 hours. The iGEM student team at TU Delft is working on a fast sensor to detect GHB in drinks.

Environment - Life Sciences - 10.08.2022
How the eating habits of a limited group of Americans determine sustainability
Masses of hamburgers, steaks, cheese and a lot of eggs: Americans love their animal products. But researcher Oliver Taherzadeh discovered that only a relatively small group of high-volume consumers need to modify their diet to achieve an enormous environmental gain. The day on which we have used up all the biological resources that the Earth can regenerate in a year, Earth Overshoot Day, was this year 28 July.

Physics - Life Sciences - 04.08.2022
TU Delft researchers create flow-driven rotors at the nanoscale
Researchers from TU Delft have constructed the smallest flow-driven motors in the world. Inspired by iconic Dutch windmills and biological motor proteins, they created a self-configuring flow-driven rotor from DNA that converts energy from an electrical or salt gradient into useful mechanical work. The results open new perspectives for engineering active robotics at the nanoscale.

Life Sciences - 04.08.2022
Our brain is a prediction machine that is always active
Our brain is a prediction machine that is always active
Our brain works a bit like the autocomplete function on your phone - it is constantly trying to guess the next word when we are listening to a book, reading or conducting a conversation. By contrast with speech recognition computers, our brains are constantly making predictions at different levels, from meaning and grammar to specific sounds.

Life Sciences - Criminology / Forensics - 01.08.2022
Mad or bad: can we tackle aggression with brain stimulation?
It could come straight out of Stanley Kubrick's dystopian movie A Clockwork Orange: using direct brain stimulation to reduce aggressive behaviour. For PhD candidate Ruben Knehans, it's his daily business. Aside from the medical complexity, it raises all sorts of questions. Is it ethical, for example, to modify someone's behaviour? Can you justify imposing brain stimulation on convicts under criminal law? How to set rules and standards? Ruben tries to answer these questions in his PhD research at UM's Faculty of Law.

Life Sciences - Environment - 25.07.2022
Do fish suffer from oxygen starvation?
Larger fishes are more likely to experience oxygen deficiency in warming water than smaller species. The same applies to fish with large cells, note researchers at Radboud University in their latest study. In addition, marine fishes are less tolerant of oxygen-depleted water than freshwater fishes. Based on these insights, the researchers ultimately aim to predict which aquatic species are at risk due to changes in their habitat caused by global warming and human activities.

Life Sciences - 04.07.2022
Connectivity of language areas unique in the human brain
Neuroscientists have gained new insight into how our brain evolved into a language-ready brain. Compared to chimpanzee brains, the pattern of connections of language areas in our brain has expanded more than previously thought. The researchers at Radboud University and University of Oxford publish their findings in PNAS on July 4.

Life Sciences - 19.05.2022
Neurostimulation may inhibit aggressive behavior in forensic patients
Neurostimulation may inhibit aggressive behavior in forensic patients
Aggression is still a major problem in society. Within forensic care, between 50 and 75% of patients with a violent crime also have an addiction background. Current treatments are not effective enough for this target group to reduce aggression and violent recidivism. It is crucial to understand which brain processes cause aggressive behavior to develop a good treatment method.

Life Sciences - 06.04.2022
In uncertain situations, our choices become messy
We are constantly making decisions in our lives, from picking an entrance gate at the station to choosing a place to live. Our expectations about the outcome drive these choices. But what if we become uncertain about a situation or are surprised by an outcome and our expectations are no longer correct? Thomas Meindertsma examined how the brain deals with uncertainty and surprise when making decisions.

Life Sciences - 15.04.2021
Travel reveals the mind
Travel reveals the mind
Exploring the minds of our primate cousins in the wild, using under-exploited observations of their travel paths A large set of observations of the travel paths of wild primates provides new opportunities for in-depth insights in the evolution of the mental abilities that primates, including ourselves, use to know where and when to travel in the most efficient way.

Environment - Life Sciences - 26.03.2021
Measuring bird migration above ARTIS as part of a demonstration site
Measuring bird migration above ARTIS as part of a demonstration site
Researchers of the University of Amsterdam have installed a BirdScan radar at the elephant enclosure in ARTIS Amsterdam Royal Zoo to record bird migration. This BirdScan radar is part of the first site of the national research project ARISE that has the ultimate aim to monitor biodiversity in the Netherlands.

Life Sciences - Environment - 23.02.2021
How sponges dine in a marine desert
How sponges dine in a marine desert
Marine biologists have been able to visualize for the first time how tropical sponges and their symbiotic bacteria work together to consume and recycle organic food. The research led by Meggie Hudspith and Jasper de Goeij from the University of Amsterdam, was a collaborative project with colleagues from the Australian Universities of Sydney, Queensland and Western Australia, and the research institute Carmabi on Curaçao, and is now published in the scientific journal Microbiome.

Environment - Life Sciences - 21.01.2021
Eutrophication turns aquatic omnivores into vegetarians
Eutrophication turns aquatic omnivores into vegetarians
The feeding behaviour of several invertebrate animals in aquatic food webs is drastically changed by increasing inputs of nitrogen and phosphorus into surface waters. This is demonstrated in a new study by researchers from the University of Amsterdam and Wageningen Environmental Research, that is now published in the scientific journal Ecology.

Life Sciences - 16.10.2020
Research about restored brain function by using sleeping pills
It has been all over the popular news: a Dutch man who has not been able to move or talk for eight years due to severe brain injury can once again function normally with the use of sleeping pills. Neurobiologists Conrado Bosman and Cyriel Pennartz of the UvA's Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences are among the scientists behind a study that tries to unravel the working mechanism of this phenomenon.