Science Bites: July 11th

Science Bites: July 11th

Cycling to stave off diabetes

Cycling regularly, whether for transportation or recreation, may help prevent Type 2 diabetes, according to a large population-based study conducted in Denmark. These findings could support the development of national and local programs to promote cycling.

A new model to treat Parkinson’s

Researchers have created a computational model of the brain that measures how it responds to electrical stimulation. This new method may dramatically improve deep brain stimulation, a therapy used to treat Parkinson’s disease. The next step? Scientists aim to test this technique in animal models of Parkinson’s disease and eventually translate it to humans.

Drug combos against fungal infections

In a new study, scientists created an algorithm that can identify drug combinations to treat fungal infections. This new, cost-efficient strategy could help treat complex diseases and reveal new uses for existing drugs.

Tracking dengue protein activity

For patients suffering severe dengue fever, the virus protein NS1 permeates the surface of blood vessels, potentially causing them to leak. The authors of a recent study examined how NS1 interacts with the lining of human lung endothelial cells. They found that NS1 doesn’t mess with this barrier directly, but it does induce human enzymes to alter the lining. According to the results, drugs that block these enzymes may prevent the lining from being permeated, regardless of whether NS1 is present. The authors hope their findings will help advance diagnosis and treatment of dengue fever.

 

Image Credit: Chris Evans via Flickr

Author

Tessa is the Journal Media Manager at PLOS. She graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with degrees in Rhetoric and Music. She can be reached by email at tgregory@plos.org and on Twitter at @tessagregs.

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