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Berkeley Lab Researchers Discover How and Where Breast Tumor Cells Become Dormant and What Causes Them to Become Metastatic

Berkeley Lab researchers have identified the microenvironment surrounding microvasculature as a niche where dormant breast cancer cells may reside, and the sprouting of microvasculature blood vessels as the event that transforms dormant cancer cells into metastatic tumors.

Copper on the Brain

Berkeley Lab researchers have developed unique fluorescent probes for molecular imaging of copper in the brain, and are using these probes to uncover new information critical to a healthy mind.

Berkeley Lab Researchers Find New Clue to Clinical Trial Failures of MMP Cancer Therapies

Hidetoshi Mori and Mina Bissell (photo by Roy Kaltschmidt)

Failure of Highly Touted MMP Cancer Therapies May Be Explained

New Details on the Molecular Machinery of Cancer

A structural coupling between the EGFR transmembrane helix and extracellular juxtamembrane modules in addition to EGF ligand-engagement allows intracellular kinase domains to reach each other, undergo dimerization and activate the EGFR.

New details into the activation of a cell surface protein that has been strongly linked to a large number of cancers and is a major target of cancer therapies have been reported by Berkeley Lab researchers.

Genome-wide Atlas of Gene Enhancers in the Brain On-line

A new genome-wide digital atlas of gene enhancers in the brain  will enable detailed scientific studies of gene regulation and the impacts of genetic mutations on neurological disorders.

Berkeley Lab researchers have unveiled a first-of-its-kind atlas of gene-enhancers in the brain that should greatly benefit future research into the underlying causes of neurological disorders such as autism, epilepsy and schizophrenia.

Berkeley Lab Scientists Create First 3-D Model of a Protein Critical to Embryo Development

The PRC2-AEBP2 complex consists of four different lobes of about 55 Å in diameter (A, B, C, D) interconnected by two narrow arms (Arm1, Arm2). two activity-controlling elements of PRC2 are shown in blue and located at opposite ends.

Berkeley Lab researchers have constructed the first detailed and complete picture of a protein complex that is tied to human birth defects as well as the progression of many forms of cancer. Knowing the architecture of this protein, PRC2, should be a boon to its future use in the development of new and improved therapeutic drugs.

Protein Linked to Therapy Resistance in Breast Cancer

Saori Furuta, Berkeley Lab Life Sciences Division (Photo by Robert Lee Del Chiaro)

Berkeley Lab researchers have identified the FAM83A protein as a possible new oncogene and linked it to therapy resistance in breast cancer. This discovery helps explain the clinical correlation between a high expression of FAM83A and a poor prognosis for breast cancer patients, and may also provide a new target for future therapies.

Exciting New Field of Bioorthogonal Chemistry Owes a Debt to Curiosity-Driven Research from Previous Eras

Carolyn Bertozzi is a leading authority on the promising new field of bioorthogonal chemistry, which could fundamentally change drug development and the diagnosis of cancer and other diseases. (Photo by Roy Kaltschmidt, Berkeley Lab)

In her Kavli Lecture at the American Chemical Society’s spring meeting, Carolyn Bertozzi described how her ground-breaking bioorthogonal chemistry research made use of experiments nearly a century ago by two German chemists whose work rose from scientific curiosity.

Responding to the Radiation Threat

This octadentate HOPO is a sequestering agent that can encapsulate actinides, such as this plutonium atom (gold), into tightly bound cage-like complexes for excretion out of the body. (image by Zosia Rostomian, Berkeley Lab)

Berkeley Lab Researchers are developing a promising treatment for safely decontaminating humans exposed to radioactive actinides from a major radiation exposure event, such as a nuclear reactor accident or a “dirty bomb” terrorist attack. The treatment, which can be administered as a pill that can result in the excretion of approximately 90-percent of the actinide contaminants within 24 hours, has been advanced through the initial pre-clinical phases.

How Good Cholesterol Turns Bad

(Top panel) Optimized negative-staining EM of CETP shows the banana shape with a larger, dense and more globular end and a smaller, less dense and more tapered opposite end. (Lower panel)  Overlaying the CETP crystal structure onto ns-EM image shows a near-perfect match in structural shape and size.

Berkeley Lab researchers have found new evidence to explain how cholesteryl ester transfer protein (CETP) mediates the transfer of cholesterol from “good” high density lipoproteins (HDLs) to “bad” low density lipoproteins (LDLs). These findings point the way to the design of safer, more effective next generation CETP inhibitors that could help prevent the development of heart disease.