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Regeneration in distantly related species: common strategies and pathways

All animals capable of regenerating a lost body part, from an organ or a limb to the whole organism, use a common set of genes. This is the striking discovery of a team of researchers from the Center for Complexity and Biosystems of the University of Milan, led by Caterina La Porta. They analyzed the genetic activity in regenerating tissues from widely different species—from hydra to mice. They found that some of the genes active at the beginning of the regeneration process are the same in very different species, including mammals which have lost this function during evolution, except for the restoration of the liver. The discovery of this shared genetic signature is of great importance to understand how regeneration evolved and could be useful for future regeneration therapies.

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This Giant Fireball Over Michigan Was Visible From Six States and Canada

The National Weather Service says that the most likely explanation for an object which sent out illumination and a sonic boom throughout southwest Michigan, five other states, and Canada on Tuesday night was the breakup of a meteor, WXYZ reported. The American Meteor Society collected at least 200 reports of the incident, which for around a second was so bright it lit parts of the Detroit region like it was daytime.

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Blood-vessel-on-a-chip provides insight into new anti-inflammatory drug candidate

One of the most important and fraught processes in the human body is inflammation. Inflammatory responses to injury or disease are crucial for recruiting the immune system to help the body heal, but inflammation can also cause an increase in the production of thrombin, which can lead to dangerous blood clots and other conditions. Activated protein C (APC) is a naturally occurring anti-coagulant protein with anti-inflammatory and other protective effects that has been used medically to treat severe blood infections and wounds; however, its use is limited because its inhibition of thrombin also impacts the blood’s ability to clot, increasing bleeding risk.

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‘Gyroscope’ molecules form crystal that’s both solid and full of motion

Molecular machines, much smaller than single cells, may one day be able to deliver drugs to kill cancer cells or patrol your body for signs of disease. But many applications of these machines require large arrays of rock-hard moving parts, which would be difficult to build with typical biological structures.