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Systems BiologyThe goal of systems biology is to describe the dynamic processes of life and of biological systems using mathematical models. In line with the foundation of the new Braunschweig Integrated Centre of Systems Biology (BRICS) we have compiled some background information about systems biology for you: To the systems biology feature.
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Bacterial pathogens have an arsenal of molecular tools that they need in order to be able to efficiently infect a host organism. Researchers refer to these tools as virulence factors. This includes specific structures of the bacteria, but also protein molecules that damage or manipulate the host cell. For example, several types of bacteria form syringe-like constructs, or…
Before a newly detected agent, used to fight for example a bacterial or viral pathogen, can be approved for use as medication, it must pass various test studies: The first pre-clinical studies are done on cell cultures and animals, after which follow several clinical studies using humans. The time from the discovery of the agent to production of the actual medicine may take from ten…
Cells harbour a so-called cytoskeleton, comprising a network of filaments, which can support the plasma membrane, mediate cell shape, and are responsible for proper organelle positioning and vesicle transport. A major component of the cytoskeleton is actin, polymerising into so-called microfilaments and associating into various supra-molecular structures such as networks and…
“I congratulate the three selected labs,” says Otmar D. Wiestler, President of the Helmholtz Association. “They proved themselves in a highly competitive contest and are now backed by considerable financial support and international partnerships to advance socially relevant issues.” According to Wiestler, the funded projects now have the best conditions for achieving substantial…
Unicellular parasites belonging to the genus Trypanosoma cause sleeping sickness in humans. Sleeping sickness is a debilitating and potentially lethal disease in Sub-Saharan Africa, which is transmitted by the tsetse fly. Prof Nicolai Siegel, who heads a research group in molecular parasitology at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (LMU), uses trypanosomes as an experimental…