The Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences

Center for Cellular Dynamics News

Noteworthy news pertaining to the Center for Cellular Dynamics

Center for Cellular Dynamics News

Discovery rewriting the evolutionary history of the nervous system

Penn State researchers at the Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences uncover a long-standing, fundamental error in the story of the nervous system’s evolution.

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Summer fieldwork for MCIBS students: from here to China

This summer many MCIBS students can be found hard at work in their labs. Or you just might find some by a local stream or in Africa or China taking their research into the field.

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Modern brain circuitry retains ancient foundation

Studying sea anemones' molecular nerve-signaling machinery, Tim Jegla finds that a burst of evolutionary innovation laid the foundation of our nervous systems more than half a billion years ago.

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Crowd-funding campaign to accelerate clinical trials of brain-repair discovery

Pushing promising new brain-repair research from the Gong Chen lab into clinical trials is the goal of a quick crowd-funding campaign that kicked off March 30.

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Nerve-cell signaling traced back to common ancestor of humans and sea anemone

New research led by by Tim Jegla shows that a burst of evolutionary innovation in the genes responsible for electrical communication among nerve cells in our brains occurred over 600 million years ago in a common ancestor of humans and the sea anemone.

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Ben Franklin's TechCelerator turns promising research into startups with promise

Research-to-startup program helps build entrepreneurship among scientists including Huck Institutes faculty researchers Tony Jun Huang and Gong Chen.

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Research team sets sights on fighting hunger by strengthening plants

A group of Penn State students led by Assistant Professor of Biology Charles Anderson is exploring ways to make plants hardier, boosting world food supplies in the process.

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Crowdfunding campaign underway to support student research on sustainable agriculture

A group of students led by Charles Anderson has launched a crowdfunding campaign to support their new research project in sustainable agriculture, Fast Farming: Feeding a Hot, Dry World.

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Announcing MCIBS a new life sciences graduate program

The new Molecular, Cellular and Integrative Biosciences (MCIBS) graduate program merger aims to increase integration and flexibility for life sciences students.

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Rescue of Alzheimer's memory deficit achieved by reducing 'excessive inhibition'

A new drug target to fight Alzheimer's disease has been discovered by a research team led by Gong Chen, a Professor of Biology and the Verne M. Willaman Chair in Life Sciences at Penn State University.

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Human heart beats using nearly billion-year-old molecular mechanism

Neurobiologist Tim Jegla and his Lab find in a living, ancient sea anemone species the same gene family and ion channel that regulate the slow wave contractions of the human heart.

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Existence of new neuron repair pathway discovered

The Rolls Lab discovers a new neuron repair pathway that could one day help people suffering from nerve damage.

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Critical protein discovered for healthy cell growth in mammals

A team of researchers including Huck Institutes affiliates Aimin Liu and Gang (Greg) Ning has discovered a protein required for the growth of tiny, but critical, hair-like structures called cilia on cell surfaces.

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Will Hancock named American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering fellow

Huck Institutes faculty researcher William Hancock has been named a fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE).

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Experiments show hypothesis of microtubule steering accurate

Tiny protein motors in cells can steer microtubules in the right direction through branching nerve cell structures, according to Huck Institutes faculty researchers Melissa Rolls and Will Hancock and graduate student Yalei Chen.

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A new pathway for neuron repair is discovered

Penn State University molecular biologists including Huck Institutes faculty member Melissa Rolls and graduate students Richard Albertson, Michelle Stone, and Li Chen have discovered a brand-new pathway for repairing nerve cells that could have implications for faster and improved healing.

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Breakthrough could one day help sufferers of brain injury, Alzheimer's disease

Penn State researchers including Huck Institutes faculty member Gong Chen and graduate students Ziyuan Guo, Yuchen Chen, and Fan Wang have developed an innovative technology to regenerate functional neurons after brain injury and also in model systems used for research on Alzheimer's disease.

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Protein changes linked to symptoms of Alzheimer's Disease

A research discovery that helps point the way to potential therapies for memory-related disorders including Alzheimer's Disease has been made by a team of neuroscientists that includes Huck Institutes affiliate Douglas Cavener.

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Gong Chen selected as holder of the Verne M. Willaman Chair in the Life Sciences

Gong Chen, a professor of biology at Penn State, has been appointed as Holder of the Verne M. Willaman Chair in the Life Sciences effective July 1, 2013 in recognition of his national and international reputation for excellence in research and teaching.

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Short-term gene-expression "memory" is inherited in proteins associated with DNA

By studying a gene in yeast, a team of scientists led by Huck Institutes affiliate Lu Bai has found that modifications to proteins associated with DNA can control whether or not a gene is allowed to function and may be important in maintaining a gene's "expression potential" so that future cells will behave as the parent cell did.

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