Diseases that primarily affect the brain, often resulting in dementia, are some of the most prevalent, devastating, and yet poorly treated of all diseases. Despite advances in our knowledge of basic neurosciences, the failure rate for new drugs targeting important central nervous system (CNS) diseases still exceeds most other areas of drug discovery. A significant barrier to drug development for these diseases is presented by the blood-brain barrier (BBB).
A recent paper exploring the use of optimized virus like particles (VLPs) to deliver base editing proteins has shown impressive levels of efficacy and, importantly, low levels of off-target activity in mouse models of therapy for brain, eye and liver disease.
Producing lab-grown meat â€“ made with animal cells grown in bioreactors â€“ is a promising avenue for sustainable meat production. However, scaling up this process to produce tons of meat at a reasonable cost is difficult. One of the hurdles in the scaling process is producing the large quantities of growth factors required for culturing muscle and other cells.
Neutrophils and macrophages are key players in the early immune response to infection. In a recent paper, published in Science Advances, a team of researchers at Vanderbilt University have further explored neutrophil NETosis, a process whereby neutrophils initially secrete, and ultimately autolyse, to generate a sticky mesh which immobilizes the pathogen. The researchers have shown that this mesh actively enables and empowers the subsequent activity of macrophages.