April, 2007

Headline News Innovation and Development

Applied Technology

Basic Science Geoscience
Cooperation between CAS and Local Governments Bioscience International Cooperation Brief News Visits & Exchanges

Breakthrough in Antimicrobial Peptides Research

A research group headed by Research Fellow Lai Ren from the Kunming Institute of Zoology, CAS, made a major progress in studies over the diversity of antimicrobial peptides and reported their work in Molecular & Cellular Proteomics at the beginning of this year. Recently, the group and its partner, a team of researchers led by Research Fellow Long Weimin from the Institute of Biophysics, CAS, have successfully designed bifunctional peptides with both antimicrobial and trypsin inhibitory activities, which paves a new way out to the problem that antimicrobial protease are always hydrolyzed when being used as drugs. The feat has been published on line on March 23rd by FASEB Journal. International community acclaims that ¡°the paper is noticeable and significant to the biology development. It may have schemed an excellent method for pharmacodynamic designs.¡±

New Mechanism for Axonal Growth and Path-finding

¡ªAbnormal Development of Axons Results in Mental Deficiency
Recent study clearly identifies a novel role for Myosin X, a member of the myosin super-family, in the axonal growth and path-finding during the development of nervous system. This finding is uncovered through joint efforts of the research teams respectively lead by Prof. Ding Yu-Qiang from the Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, CAS, and Prof. Xiong Wen-Cheng from the Medical College of Georgia, USA. Their work entitled "Myosin X regulates netrin receptors and functions in axonal path-finding" is published in Nature Cell Biology¡®s No. 3 issue of 2007. Scientists have already found that the netrin, a secretion protein existing in the nervous system, can stimulate the axonal growth and regulate their path-finding in special field, but the underlying mechanisms are not well understood. They provided evidence for the involvement of the unconventional myosin X (Myo X) in netrin-1 function. Myo X interacts with the netrin receptor deleted in colorectal cancer (DCC) and neogenin, a DCC-related protein. Then, DCC can be redistributed by the expression of Myo X to the cell periphery or to the tips of neurites. In both in vivo and in vitro experiments, when the interaction of Myo X and DCC was blocked, the axonal growth and path-finding induced by netrins was interfered and the development of the nervous system was also held back, which will result in various diseases in the nervous system, including mental deficiency and epileptic attacks.


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