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  • science news Lectin-Modified Magnetic Nano-PLGA for Photodynamic Therapy In Vivo February 1

    The extreme aggressiveness and lethality of many cancer types appeal to the problem of the development of new-generation treatment strategies based on smart materials. The targeted delivery of nanoparticles to specific cancer cell receptors is believed to be such a strategy; however, there are no targeted nano-drugs that have successfully completed clinical trials to date. To meet the challenge, the team of the Laboratory of Molecular Immunology of the Shemyakin-Ovchinnikov Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Laboratory for Biochemical Research of Carcinogenesis of the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, and the Department of Nanobiomedicine of the Sirius University, have developed an alternative method of oncotherapy.

  • science news RALF peptides modulate immune response in the moss Physcomitrium patens February 1

    Plants utilize small secreted peptides as important mediators of many processes, from growth and development to response to stress conditions. One of such regulators is the conservative 5 kDa cysteine-rich RALF (Rapid Alkalinization Factor) peptide family, which is widely present in terrestrial plants. RAPID ALKALINIZATION FACTOR (RALFs) are peptides that regulate multiple physiological processes in plants. This peptide family has considerably expanded during land plant evolution, but the role of ancient RALFs in modulating stress responses is unknown

  • science news Antibody fragment-drug conjugates selectively eliminate GD2-expressing tumor cells January 26

    Employing antibody fragments instead of full-length antibodies in antibody-drug conjugates can facilitate accumulation of the therapeutics in the tumor and reduce their side effects. Scientists from the Laboratory of molecular immunology together with colleagues from the Laboratory of cell interactions, the Laboratory of molecular diagnostics at IBCh RAS, and other Russian Institutes have for the first time developed GD2-specific antibody fragment-drug conjugates. Minibody and scFv fragment conjugates with the tubulin-inhibiting drugs MMAE and MMAF manifested strong cytotoxic and cytostatic effects in GD2-positive neuroblastoma and melanoma cell lines.

  • science news 5-(Perylen-3-ylethynyl)uracil as an antiviral scaffold: Potent suppression of enveloped virus reproduction by 3-methyl derivatives in vitro January 23

    A group of scientists from the Laboratory of Molecular Design and Synthesis, the Protein Growth and Differentiation Factor Expression Group of the Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, Russian Academy of Sciences, the Institute of Poliomyelitis and other institutes synthesized a series of compounds based on 5-(perylene-3-ylethynyl)uracil and studied their antiviral properties and mechanism of action. Previous studies of this class of compounds have suggested controversial types of mechanisms of action. Nonetheless providing comparable high activity. The present study showed that, upon irradiation with light, amphiphilic compounds accumulated in cell and viral membranes inhibit the entry of enveloped viruses into the cell.

  • science news Prophage-derived regions in Curtobacterium genomes: good things, small packages January 23

    Curtobacterium is a genus of Gram-positive bacteria within the order Actinomycetales. Some Curtobacterium species are harmful pathogens of agricultural crops such as soybean, dry beans, peas, sugar beet and beetroot, which occur throughout the world. About 200 publicly available genomes of Curtobacterium species, including environmental metagenomic sequences, were inspected for the presence of sequences of possible prophage origin using bioinformatic methods.

  • science news Use of an Integrated Approach Involving AlphaFold Predictions for the Evolutionary Taxonomy of Duplodnaviria Viruses January 18

    One of the challenging tasks of Duplodnaviria taxonomy is the classification of high-ranked taxa, including families and orders. In this study, the team of scientists from the Laboratory of molecular bioengineering IBCh RAS in collaboration with the colleagues from the Limnological Institute analized the evolutionary relationships of conserved viral proteins, representing different viruses, including all classified Duplodnaviria families, using AlphaFold modelling.

  • science news Chemogenetic emulation of intraneuronal oxidative stress affects synaptic plasticity January 16

    The members of the redox biology group and the Laboratory of molecular technologies from the Department of Metabolism and Redox Biology, IBCH RAS, in the collaboration with colleagues from Federal Center of Brain Research and Neurotechnologies, Federal Medical Biological Agency, and Pirogov Russian National Research Medical University, using a well-established model of long-term potentiation, revealed that neuronal oxidative stress affects synaptic plasticity.

  • science news Study of aging of contrast nanoparticles for MRI December 22, 2022

    A group of scientists from the Laboratory of Molecular Immunology of the IBCh RAS, GPI RAS and a several other scientific Institutes investigated biotransformation of magnetic nanoparticles in the body and the effect of this process both on the metabolism of the iron and on reducing the contrast properties of nanoparticles during imaging. For a long time, it remained unclear what happens in the long term with nanoparticle contrasts for MRI after their distribution in tissues. In addition, magnetic particle biodegradation is accompanied by abundant release of iron ions, which can cause toxic effects. A recent study published in the high-ranking Journal of Nanobiotechnology clarified these issues.

  • science news New Type of Interaction of Snake Three-Finger α-Neurotoxins with Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors December 14, 2022

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor of α7 type (α7-nAChR) presented in the nervous and immune systems and epithelium is a promising therapeutic target for cognitive disfunctions and cancer treatment. Weak toxin from venom of cobra Naja kaouthia (WTX) is a non-conventional three-finger α-neurotoxin from Naja kaouthia venom, targeting α7-nAChR with weak affinity. There were no data on interaction mode of non-conventional neurotoxins with α7-nAChR.

  • science news Identification of HLA-B*27-bound peptides recognized by TCRs associated with ankylosing spondylitis December 13, 2022

    Ankylosing spondylitis is an autoimmune rheumatological disease, where aberrant immune response against self-antigens is considered as a main trigger of the pathology. Up to date identification of antigen epitopes recognized by specific T cell receptors (TCRs), especially self-epitopes, remains tricky challenge and there is the very limited list of TCRs with characterized antigen specificity.