The overall estimated prevalence of immune-mediated inflammatory diseases in western societies is 5-7%. Interestingly, the European Working Group on Immune-Mediated Inflammatory Diseases has initiated a forum to foster collaborations in this important clinical field which includes diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA), inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and psoriasis. All three diseases have similar pathophysiology and are treated by common biological therapies including tumor necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitors.
Gender differences are observed for RA and IBD with female: male incidence ratios of 3:1 and 1:1.5, respectively. These differences have been suggested to be caused by differences in treatment administered to men and women.This plausible explanation has been investigated by Prof van Vollenhoven and colleagues …
July has been a fantastic month for the BMC-series! The sun has finally shone on our London offices after weeks of rain, we have our first video highlight, Darwin the puppy made two appearances on the BMC Genetics homepage (see more below) and we published the following great articles. Oh and there’s some sporting event in town.
Cell Biology: Nuclear envelope assembly needs MeCP2
Loss of methyl CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2) reduces cell proliferation and is linked to an accompanying ecrease in lamin levels as shown in a new study published in BMC Cell Biology. This indicates that MeCP2 may be part of omplexes involved in attracting heterochromatin at …
BMC Biology publishes today a research article
(from Chiari et al) on the placement of turtles in the
evolutionary tree, which supports their position as a sister group to
the birds and crocodiles (collectively called the archosaurs). This
isn’t the first time that a similar placement has been supported, as
Blair Hedges – who published a similar result more
than a decade ago – discusses in an accompanying commentary.
So why is it interesting?
Partly, it’s because there has been
some recent dispute over the correct placement, particularly …
Ever wondered what 48 hours in the life and death of a cell looks like?
I guess most people’s answers to that questions might be “no”, but honestly – it’s fascinating. Programmed Cell Death (PCD) occurs in both plants and animals, and is quite often a tightly regulated series of events. Sometimes these events can be environmentally induced, as when cells are subjected to heat shock, but most often this can just be down to the normal everyday processes of tissue development.
Although largely well characterized, until now it has not been possible to visualize the sequence of events that occur throughout this process. In a new article published today in BMC Plant Biology, Jaime Wertman and colleagues …
BMC Plant Biology will be escaping the Olympic madness in London next week for the rather more sedate – but no less exciting – surroundings of beautiful Freiburg, in south-west Germany, for the Plant Biology Congress 2012.
This year’s congress is jointly organized by The Federation of European Societies of Plant Biologists (FESPB) and the European Plant Science Organisation (EPSO), and is the first time that the two independent organizations have come together to host a joint congress.
It promises to be an exciting week of lively discussion, with topics focused around global climate change and the problems of feeding an ever growing global population. Other sessions include systems biology and bioinformatics, green biotechnology, and …
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the UK, affecting 46,000 women each year. HER2, a cell surface receptor belonging to the family of epidermal growth factor receptors, is over-expressed in 30% of breast cancer patients, and these “HER2 positive” patients respond well to HER2-targeted therapies.
New research published in BMC Medicine by Parul Gupta and Sanjay Srivastava from Texas Tech University shows that phenethyl isothiocyanate (PEITC), a compound present in cruciferous vegetables, is a promising new treatment for HER2 positive breast cancer.
Breast cancer patients over-expressing HER2 respond well to treatment with trastuzumab (Herceptin), a monoclonal antibody therapy targeting HER2. While this therapy is effective …
The Four Principles, originally devised by Beauchamp and Childress in their textbook Principles of Biomedical Ethics, are considered by many as the standard theoretical framework from which to analyse ethical situations in medicine. While the validity and scope of the principles are often debated, there is no questioning the canonical status of the four principles in the field of Medical Ethics. Briefly, the four principles are,
Autonomy – The right for an individual to make his or her own choice.
Beneficence – The principle of acting with the best interest of the other in mind.
Non-maleficence – The principle that "above all, do no harm," as stated in the Hippocratic Oath.
Justice – A concept that emphasizes fairness and equality among individuals.
The BMC-series is a big fan of twitter (@BMC-series) and an even bigger fan of promoting scientific discussion and debate. Virtual journal clubs allow researchers all over the world to interact using tweets to discuss articles and next week BMC Microbiology is under the spotlight!
The following guest blog from Emma Trantham invites you to participate in the Microbiology Twitter Journal Club.
“After learning about the success of #twitjc (a medical based Twitter journal club) a group of microbiologists decided to set up their own Microbiology journal club on Twitter, and so #microtwjc was born.
The club runs every other Tuesday (8pm-9pm BST) and at each session a different microbiology-related paper …
BMC Bioinformatics and BMC Genomics will be attending the upcoming ISMB
Conference in Long Beach California, July 15th – 17th. We should be
delighted to meet you at the conference. We will be located at Booth 36
and you can meet us there during the conference. We should be most
interested to hear your views on the Biomed Central portfolio of
journals, especially BMC Genomics and BMC Bioinformatics.
Alternatively, please contact Kate (Catherine.firstname.lastname@example.org) to arrange a time to talk.
occurs when the blood supply to the brain is cut off, resulting in cell
damage and death due to lack of oxygen and nutrients. Facial weakness,
arm weakness, difficulty with speech and time to call emergency services
test) are the most common signs of stroke. A stroke can happen in two
main ways: either when a blood vessel is blocked by a blood clot or
plaque, termed ischemic stroke or when a blood vessel is ruptured, known as hemorrhagic stroke. A transient ischemic attack (TIA) or mini stroke is caused by a temporary blood clot and is indicative of a more serious risk of a future stroke.
Stroke is a …