All news from Anaesthesiology

Heart-Muscle Cells Grow Up

Scientists have been trying to replace damaged heart tissue using lab-made heart-muscle cells, either injected or in patch form. But the resulting muscle doesn't work very well because the cells are stuck in an immature stage. Using a novel CRISPR/Cas9 technique, a new study finds a master gene, that's required for the cells to become fully fledged, contractile adult cells.

Scientists around the world have been trying to replace damaged heart tissue using lab-made heart-muscle cells (cardiomyocytes), either injecting them into the heart or applying patches laced with the cells. But results to date have been underwhelming. The study was published in Nature Communications.

Promising Allergy Vaccine for Hay Fever Developed

Using sugar molecules researchers from the University of Copenhagen have developed a new vaccine for hay fever that may reduce treatment times and increase the effectiveness of treatments. The vaccine, which is still at the earliest research stage, has been tested on mice. The method can potentially also be used to develop different forms of vaccines, for example, vaccines for autoimmune disorders.

Fast Detection Strategy in Detecting Type of Virus Acquired by Patients

Even tiny amounts of viruses can have disastrous consequences. RNA identification can reveal the type of virus present. A fast and sensitive technique based on optical detection has now been outlined in the journal Angewandte Chemie. Scientists from Germany and Finland have demonstrated the binding of an RNA target to a probe made of gold nanorods and a DNA origami structure. Chirality switches triggered by binding can be measured by circular dichroism spectroscopy.

A Fully Protected Hydrogenase/Polymer-Based Bioanode For High-Performance Hydrogen

Researchers have developed a new mechanism to protect enzymes from oxygen as biocatalysts in fuel cells. The enzymes, known as hydrogenases, are just as efficient as precious metal catalysts, but unstable when they come into contact with oxygen.

They are therefore not yet suitable for technological applications. The new protective mechanism is based on oxygen-consuming enzymes that draw their energy from sugar. The study was published in the journal Nature Communications.