Science news: Mar 2013

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Study reveals ‘evolutionary glitch’ as possible cause of common childhood ear infections

Researchers have uncovered how the human ear is formed, giving clues as to why children are susceptible to infections such as glue ear.
22 March 2013

Surprising insight into survival of immune B cells

The survival of B cells, a vital part of our immune system, depends on signals between two proteins on their surface that were previously thought to work independently.
21 March 2013

Mutations in VCP gene implicated in a number of neurodegenerative diseases

It’s rare for single mutations in one gene to cause different diseases but UCL researchers have shown that this is precisely what happens when mutations occur in a gene called VCP, resulting in several different neurodegenerative diseases.
14 March 2013

New role for immune cells in our gut

The discovery of a new role for immune cells called Th17 cells in our intestines – helping to recruit antibodies to fight infections and toxins.
11 March 2013

Old genes with a new role in controlling gut muscle contractions

The discovery of two genes that play an important role in development of the nerve cell networks that control the function of the gut.
08 March 2013

Oestrogen patches could offer treatment option for prostate cancer

Trial suggests patches giving oestrogen through the skin could be an easy and safe alternative to hormone therapies for prostate cancer.
04 March 2013