The genome of the human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) was first sequenced over 20 years ago, but researchers have now discovered that the common pathogen has a surprisingly complex protein-coding capacity as well.
The virus only causes birth defects in newborn infants and disease in adults with compromised immune systems, but it infects most humans on the planet. The new findings, published in the 23 November issue of Science, could help explain why HCMV is such a widespread and successful virus.
A colorful computer illustration that depicts the emergence of structure in the universe, spanning 240 million light years of galactic growth, is among the winners of the 2011 International Science and Engineering Visualization Challenge, sponsored by the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) and the journal Science.
Tiago Branco is the 2011 grand prize winner in the annual international competition for The Eppendorf & Science Prize for Neurobiology. He is being recognized for his outstanding contributions to research into how single neurons in the brain can compute and convert information into behavior.
A new study in dogs reveals two genes responsible for controlling heartbeat rhythm and re-coordinating the action of the heart’s right and left ventricles. These genes may be part of the molecular pathway affected by pacemakers, researchers report in the 14 September issue of the journal Science Translational Medicine.
Using gene therapy or drugs to activate these genes in heart failure patients may help people who cannot use a pacemaker—or possibly replace pacemakers altogether, the study authors propose.