Diseases

News

After intravenous injection into mice, STING-lipid nanoparticles (red) transported through blood vessels(green) accumulate in the liver (Takashi Nakamura, et al. Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer. July 2, 2021).
17 Sep 2021
A specially designed lipid nanoparticle could deliver immune-signaling molecules into liver macrophage cells to overcome resistance to anti-tumor immunotherapy.
IMAGE
13 Sep 2021
iCeMS scientists and colleagues have designed a molecular code that powers up cancer-fighting immune cells.
Asia research News - Editor's Choice
10 Sep 2021
Magnetic patterns in meteorites, Treating mitochondrial diseases, underwater sensors and a broad COVID-19 vaccine in the September Editor's Choice. Plus, what's it like to communicate vaccine research in a pandemic and Asia Research News 2022.
07 Sep 2021
Recreating major pathological features of Parkinson’s disease in a lab-grown, human mini-brain will help researchers to explore new treatments. This is the first time that Lewy bodies, a hallmark of Parkinson’s disease in patients’ brains, have been produced in the laboratory, offering new insights into the disease.
06 Sep 2021
Using data from 1,107 patients dating back over 30 years, researchers have connected prognostic impact to poorly differentiated tumor size in hepatocellular carcinoma. Data confirmed previous findings that after resection, <2 cm sized tumors had excellent long-term outcomes. However, ≥2 cm and ≥5 cm sizes shared a risk of early recurrence with the latter size also at risk of early extrahepatic recurrence.
25 Aug 2021
A novel CT scan-based approach has revealed significant changes in a parameter indicating lung destruction in some asthmatics. This finding could lead to more personalized treatments for asthma accompanied by persistent airflow limitation.
20 Aug 2021
Sjögren's syndrome is an autoimmune disease that attacks the tear duct and salivary glands, leading to patients suffering unbearable dry eyes and mouth. To date, treatment options have been limited. But this may change thanks to a recently developed mouse model that will help explain the pathogenic mechanisms behind the disease.
10 Aug 2021
A new, energy-efficient method of electrical brain stimulation developed by researchers from the Daegu Gyeongbuk Institute of Science and Technology could aid stroke rehabilitation and has few side effects.
19 Jul 2021
A subset of fibroblasts located in small foci of tissue on the edges of extensive scarring produce a protein that protects against cell aging.
 IMAGE
14 Jul 2021
Researchers have found a way to enhance radiation therapy using novel iodine nanoparticles.
27 May 2021
Researchers at The International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) have developed an algorithmic approach to predict progression of a condition called pterygium, which involves abnormal tissue growth across the eye.
Plaque-eating microglia
21 May 2021
Single-cell gene studies are clarifying the roles of the brain’s specialised immune cell in Alzheimer’s disease and offer new avenues for treatment of this incurable condition.
19 May 2021
Scientists from Hokkaido University have shown that an antigen-based test for quantifying SARS-CoV-2 in saliva samples is simple, rapid, and more conducive for mass-screening.
long tailed macaque
13 May 2021
A simple tool allows researchers to track how different subpopulations of the Plasmodium knowlesi parasite are changing over time.
The maintenance of a healthy balance of microorganisms in the mouth helps protect against infections.
07 May 2021
A new mouthwash developed in Malaysia, called Microencapsulated OroSYNTM, is expected to protect against oral diseases. The mouthwash made from banana skin and a bacterium promotes a healthy microbiome in the oral cavity to protect against diseases
22 Apr 2021
A mitochondrial peptide called MOCCI has a surprising sidekick, and they work together to regulate inflammation and immunity, Singapore researchers reveal.
15 Apr 2021
Researchers from the Department of Neurology at Tohoku University have developed a new taxonomy for a rare autoimmune disease known as neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder. The disease was previously thought to be a form of multiple sclerosis (MS) and had, until now, borrowed its taxonomy from MS.
15 Apr 2021
Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) is an aggressive type of breast cancer with a high fatality rate. Currently, chemotherapy is the major treatment option, but the clinical result is unsatisfactory. A research team led by biologists at City University of Hong Kong (CityU) has identified and characterised a set of specific super-enhancers that stimulate the activity of the related critical cancer genes. The research has also discovered that the deletion of certain specific super-enhancers could reduce tumour cell growth. The latest findings may help discover new effective drug targets for TNBC patients to improve their survival chance.
14 Apr 2021
On April 15, 2021, Hokkaido University and Shionogi & Co., Ltd. will start to monitor COVID-19 in Osaka Prefecture based on wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE), with the cooperation of the Prefectural Government.
Reverse genetics for SARS-CoV-2 by the CPER method.
13 Apr 2021
Researchers from Osaka University and Hokkaido University develop a system for analyzing mutations in SARS-CoV-2 that is much simpler and faster than existing methods.
Human brain cancer cells forming spherical structures on the DN gel
29 Mar 2021
A hydrogel, a type of soft matter, developed at Hokkaido University successfully reverted cancer cells back to cancer stem cells within 24 hours, in six different human cancer types. This could lead to the development of anti-cancer stem cell drugs and personalized medicines.
29 Mar 2021
Multi-country trial finds low-cost intervention to improve hypertension management in rural communities is cost-effective. Consisting of home visits by community healthcare workers, physician training and coordination with public health care infrastructure, the intervention can be scaled up in low- and middle-income countries.
26 Mar 2021
An ‘eat-me’ signal displayed on cell surfaces requires activation of a lipid-scrambling protein by a nuclear protein fragment.
25 Mar 2021
Through a series of experiments using nasal polyp organ culture and mouse models of restraint stress, researchers unveil relationship between presence of corticotropin-releasing stress hormone and increase in and degranulation of allergy-causing mast cells.
24 Mar 2021
Study shows that antibody longevity varies widely from 40 days to as long as several decades and not everyone who has recovered from COVID-19 is immune from reinfection. Individuals with low levels of neutralising antibodies may still be protected if they have robust T-cell immunity. Blood tests and a computer algorithm suggest annual vaccinations might be needed for some individuals to prevent future outbreaks of COVID-19.
The Northern Pintail, a migratory duck
11 Mar 2021
Scientists have discovered a route of introduction for High Pathogenicity Avian Influenza Virus (HPAIV) H5N8 into Japan and, in parallel, have investigated the potential of two human anti-influenza drugs for the control of HPAI in birds.
Hirofumi Sawa, MD, Ph.D.
04 Mar 2021
This article is an excerpt from the Hokkaido University research magazine “Tackling Global Issues vol.3 Fighting the menace of zoonosis" (link below).
03 Mar 2021
Osaka City University finds that the chemical sesaminol, naturally occurring in sesame seeds, protects against Parkinson’s disease by preventing neuronal damage that decreases the production of dopamine. In vitro experiments show sesaminol handle oxidative stress in cells by regulating the production of reactive oxygen species and the movement of antioxidants. In vivo experiments reveal that a diet of sesaminol increases production of dopamine and significantly improve motor functions in mice.
A research team led by Professor Gary Wong Ka-Leung (centre), Dr Lung Hong Lok (right) and Dr Law Ga-lai develop a novel dual-targeting drug for treating cancers associated with EBV.
02 Mar 2021
A Hong Kong Baptist University-led (HKBU) research team has developed a novel drug which has the potential to become a next-generation treatment for cancers associated with Epstein–Barr virus (EBV).
Chie Nakajima, DVM, Ph.D. and Kyoko Hayashida, DVM, Ph.D.
25 Feb 2021
This article is an excerpt from the Hokkaido University research magazine “Tackling Global Issues vol.3 Fighting the menace of zoonosis" (link below).

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Giants in history

Singaporean physician Oon Chiew Seng (1916 – 31 March 2022) advanced dementia care and research in Singapore, and co-founded the Apex Harmony Lodge, the nation’s first nursing home for residents with dementia.
Vietnamese surgeon Tôn Thất Tùng (10 May 1912 – 7 May 1982) developed a pioneering technique that reduced the risks and mortality rate of liver operations.
Ruby Sakae Hirose (1904 – 1960) was a Japanese-American scientist whose research contributed significantly to our understanding of blood clotting, allergies and cancer.
Iranian physician and bacteriologist Azar Andami (8 December 1926 – 19 August 1984) developed a cholera vaccine to combat an outbreak that swept through the Middle East, India, Southeast Asia, and Africa in 1937.
Michiaki Takahashi (17 February 1928 – 16 December 2013) was a Japanese virologist who developed the first chickenpox vaccine.
Irene Ayako Uchida’s (8 April 1917 – 30 July 2013) strides to understand genetic diseases such as Down syndrome paved the way for early screening of chromosomal abnormalities in foetuses.
Baron Kitasato Shibasaburo (29 January 1856 – 13 June 1931) was a Japanese physician and bacteriologist whose work led to a new understanding of preventing and treating tetanus, diphtheria and anthrax.
By isolating soil microorganisms and studying the compounds they produce, Satoshi Omura (born 1935) discovered almost 500 organic compounds with unique properties that were produced by these microorganisms, including many new antibiotics.
Chinese-American virologist and molecular biologist Flossie Wong-Staal (27 August 1946 – 8 July 2020) was the first scientist to clone HIV and determine the function of its genes.
Maharani Chakravorty (1937 – 2015) was one of India’s earliest molecular biologists whose research paved the way for advances in the treatment of bacterial and viral infections.
Husband and wife team, Kimishige (3 December 1925 – 6 July 2018) and Teruko Ishizaka (28 September 1926 – 4 June 2019) discovered the antibody class Immunoglobulin E (IgE) that triggers allergic reactions. They also discovered that IgE antibodies attach to white blood cells, known as mast cells, releasing histamine, which causes allergic reactions.
Japanese chemist Takamine Jokichi (3 November 1854 – 22 July 1922) founded the Tokyo Artificial Fertilizer Company, where he isolated a starch-digesting enzyme (named takadiastase) from the fungus Aspergillus oryzae.
Lim Boo Liat (21 August 1926 – 11 July 2020), a leading authority in the conservation of Malaysia’s biological diversity, had his initial interest in the outdoors piqued by nature lessons in school. Lim, who helped found the National Zoo of Malaysia and re-establish the Malaysian Nature Society, had a particular interest in researching zoonotic diseases associated with small animals.
A pioneer of bio-organic chemistry, Darshan Ranganathan (4 June 1941 – 4 June 2001) is remembered for developing a protocol for synthesising imidazole, a compound used to make antifungal drugs and antibiotics. Widely considered India’s most prolific researcher in chemistry, she also published dozens of papers in renowned journals on protein folding, molecular design, chemical simulation of key biological processes, and the synthesis of functional hybrid peptides and nanotubes.
Indian scientist and physician Upendranath Brahmachari (19 December 1873–6 February 1946) is best known for creating a drug called Urea Stibamine, used to safely and reliably treat visceral leishmaniasis (or Kala-azar), a severe infection caused by the Leishmania parasite.
Filipino chemist and pharmacist Manuel A. Zamora (29 March 1870 – 9 July 1929) is best remembered for his discovery of the tiki-tiki formula to combat beriberi, a disease caused by Vitamin B1 deficiency.
Indian organic chemist Asima Chatterjee (1917 to 2006) studied the medicinal properties of plant products, especially compounds known as vinca alkaloids.
Umetaro Suzuki (7 April 1874 – 20 September 1943) was a Japanese scientist best remembered for his research on beriberi, a disease caused by vitamin B1 deficiency, characterized by limb stiffness, paralysis and pain.
Salimuzzaman Siddiqui (19 October 1897 – 14 April 1994) was an artist and chemist from Pakistan whose research focused on natural products from plants.
Barry Paw (29 August 1962 – 28 December 2017) was a biologist and oncologist who discovered several novel genes and their functions in red blood cells.