ISB News

Priyanka Baloni

Bile Acids Provide More Evidence of the Gut Microbiome’s Effect on Alzheimer’s Disease

ISB researchers and their collaborators are looking beyond the one-drug, one-solution approach that has thus far failed in Alzheimer’s disease research. Instead, they are focusing on other promising research avenues, such as the possible role of the gut microbiome in dementia.

Subramanian and Akhade

How Salmonella Co-Opts the Host Immune System to Conceal Itself

While scientists have long studied bacterial infections, less attention has been paid to how the host immune response affects bacterial gene expression in the body. In a just-published paper in PNAS, ISB researchers detailed how the bacterium Salmonella conceals itself from the host immune system.

Corresponding author and ISB President Dr. Jim Heath and lead author Dr. Yapeng Su.

COVID-19 Immune Response Study Could Lead to More Effective Treatments

Findings from the ISB-Swedish COVID-19 Immune Response Study suggest that treatments aimed at arresting the infection at the stage of moderate severity may be most effective. The team studied 139 patients and found that mild COVID-19 is very distinct from the moderate or severe forms of disease, which appear surprisingly similar. 

Human proteome blueprint

HUPO Releases 10-Year High-Stringency Blueprint of Human Proteome

Like the draft “shotgun” Human Genome Project of the Human Genome Organization (HUGO), the HPP has now reached a significant decadal milestone of more than 90 percent completion of the Human Proteome that is referred to as the human proteome “parts list.”

Overall composition of gut microbiome in participants

Variations in the Microbiome Associated with Health, Disease

ISB researchers examined the associations between the gut microbiomes of about 3,400 people and roughly 150 host characteristics. The team looked at diet, medication use, clinical blood markers, and other lifestyle and clinical factors, and found evidence that variations of the gut microbiome are associated with health and disease.

Andrew Magis

ISB Researchers Identify Signals of Metastatic Cancer Years Prior to Diagnosis

By analyzing blood plasma samples taken at several time points, ISB researchers have identified specific proteins that persistently presented as outliers and signaled metastatic cancer well before patients were diagnosed. The findings were published in the journal Scientific Reports.

Illustration depicting an individual's genetic risk for disease being "reflected."

ISB Researchers Show Genetic Risk for Disease Often Reflected in Our Blood

Diseases develop gradually over years, sometimes decades, before symptoms appear, and are due to malfunctioning physiological processes brought about by our genes and environment. In research published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), ISB researchers have shown how an individual’s genetic risk for disease is often reflected in their blood.

Central Dogma

The Power of Touchscreens: ISB Researchers Develop Game to Help Students Learn Molecular Biology

Pop quiz: What’s the difference between DNA, RNA and proteins? ISB researchers have created a video game that teaches secondary students (grades 6-12) the key tenets of molecular biology in a fun, interactive and engaging way, and can be used by teachers as a supplemental aide to assist with complex lessons.

View of the responsive recruitment website and electronic consent platform as seen on mobile phone and desktop devices.

ISB Builds Digital Platform for COVID-19 Research Study – and Beyond

In a multi-institutional study of a highly infectious disease like COVID-19, paperless consent for study participants is critical. One component of the COVID-19 Immune Response Study is a recruitment website with an IRB-approved and HIPAA-compliant electronic consent platform for enrolling patients.

Shmulevich-Thorsson

ISB Researchers Among Recipients of AACR Team Science Award

The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) has recognized The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) project with the 2020 AACR Team Science Awards. Award recipients include Dr. Ilya Shmulevich, ISB professor and head of the Shmulevich Lab; ISB senior research scientist Dr. Vésteinn Þórsson; and former Shmulevich Lab members Drs. Brady Bernard and Theo Knijnenburg.

Bacterial tug of war between prevotella and bacteroides -- gut microbiome

It’s ‘Either/Or’ for Two Common Gut Microbiome Genera, and Switching Teams Is Tougher Than Expected

There is a dichotomy between Bacteroides- and Prevotella-dominated guts — two common gut bacterial genera — and there is a significant barrier when it comes to transitioning from one to the other.

Corresponding author and ISB President Dr. Jim Heath and lead author Dr. Yapeng Su.

For Cancer Cells, There Is More Than One Path to Drug Resistance

In findings published in the journal Nature Communications, researchers show that cancer cells can take more than one path to reach a drug-resistant cell state. These findings could have promising implications for the future of cancer care.

ISB researchers

Unveiling the Guerrilla Warfare Tactics of Mycobacterium Tuberculosis

ISB researchers have unveiled new insights on how Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the pathogen that causes tuberculosis, enters and exits a dormant state in human hosts. About a quarter of the world’s population has latent TB, so these important findings will enable and accelerate the discovery of more effective TB drugs.

Dr. Jeff Ranish and Dr. Mark Gillespie

Mysteries of Cell Fate Unlocked with New Measurement and Modeling Techniques 

In the cellular process of differentiation, information about the concentrations of an important class of proteins residing in a cell’s nucleus has been lacking, a missing link needed for scientists to fully understand how the process works. ISB researchers have quantified this important class of proteins that play a key role in the formation of red blood cells.

the case for masks

Molecular Biologist Dr. Sui Huang: We Should All Be Wearing Masks

ISB’s Dr. Sui Huang has been a powerful voice in a growing chorus contending that masks are an effective tool to stop the spread of COVID-19. Huang calls guidelines from the CDC and other public health agencies “unfortunate,” as they sweep aside a potentially powerful measure that could help “flatten the curve.”

Illustration of a person using a katana to slash a coronavirus in half

Merck, ISB, Swedish Collaborate In Trial to Understand, Treat COVID-19

ISB and Swedish Medical Center launched a study to follow hundreds of patients who contract COVID-19 to learn why those infected have drastically different outcomes. “Each of the COVID-19 patients has a unique lesson to teach us about how the medical and scientific community can respond most effectively to this pandemic,” said ISB President Dr. Jim Heath, who co-leads the study.

soldier

ISB Researchers Seek a Better Way to Identify Chronic Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

Mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) has been a frequent injury among U.S. combatants, and blast-related mTBI has been called the “signature injury” from military conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. ISB researchers are working to develop new methods to identify molecular changes in the blood of war veterans diagnosed with chronic mTBI.

Dr. Christian Diener, postdoc in ISB's Gibbons Lab.

New Modeling Tool Allows Microbiome Researchers to Map Community Ecology to Ecosystem Function

A promising new open-source metabolic modeling tool provides microbiome researchers a path forward in predicting ecosystem function from community structure. News of the software package, called MICOM, was developed in part by researchers in ISB’s Gibbons Lab, and its uses were published in the journal mSystems.