News & Events

Image - Different genetic features found in Chinese dementia cohort

Different genetic features found in Chinese dementia cohort

Monday, 19 June 2017

Genetic screening of Chinese patients with frontotemporal dementia (FTD) indicates that different genetic constitution in different populations could cause the same disease.

FTD is a progressive, degenerative brain disease. It primarily affects individuals younger than 65 years old.

UNSW Conjoint Associate Professor Yue Huang and researchers from four Shanghai-based institutions tested the four most common FTD causative genes in Chinese patients.

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Image - An extra organ or body part is more common than you think

An extra organ or body part is more common than you think

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

OPINION: Doctors thought they were operating on a malignant tumour when they set about removing an unusual oval lump on the right side of a 40-year-old woman’s body. What they recovered instead was a perfectly normal and fully functioning extra spleen.

Most of us only have one spleen, an organ involved in immune function and blood filtering. But accessory or extra spleens are quite common, appearing in more than one in ten people.

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Image - Kids’ vitamin gummies: unhealthy, poorly regulated and exploitative

Kids’ vitamin gummies: unhealthy, poorly regulated and exploitative

Monday, 29 May 2017

OPINION: There are many brands of kids’ “gummies” on the market. They are promoted as deliciously flavoured and a great way for growing bodies (and fussy eaters) to get the nutrients they need. The Conversation

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Image - Confessions of an overconfident, mediocre man

Confessions of an overconfident, mediocre man

Monday, 29 May 2017

OPINION: I can't really put my finger on the precise moment I embraced my own male mediocrity. It was more a dawning realisation.

Be it striding confidently onto the stage to deliver a lecture with minimal preparation, having the sheer audacity to think I can pull off live TV or radio, or even sharing my thoughts with you here, its warm embrace is always with me.

In fact, I wear my mediocrity — or at least the confidence that comes with it — like armour. Most blokes do. It's almost a defining male characteristic.

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Image - The information in the silence: tapping into the sense of touch

The information in the silence: tapping into the sense of touch

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

UNSW neuroscientists have discovered a completely new understanding of how the brain deciphers neural inputs, which could transform the next generation of robotic prosthetics.

When our skin scans a surface, everything we feel is conveyed through the nerves by means of electrical impulses, received by neurons in the brain in signals like Morse code.

Neurophysiologists Ingvars Birznieks and Richard Vickery research the sense of touch, and how we can take so much information – like pressure, shape, texture, and vibration – from one signal.

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Image - Membrane charge sensor to watch the regulation of our T cells

Membrane charge sensor to watch the regulation of our T cells

Monday, 1 May 2017

UNSW researchers with the ARC Centre of Excellence in Advanced Molecular Imaging have built a sensor to measure the membrane charge of our T cells.

T cells are the “brain” of our immune system, so understanding how they sense and respond to antigen is extremely important.

Until now we did not know how antigen binding to the T cell receptor triggers an intracellular activation response, or why the receptor does not signal when it is not bound to antigens.

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Image - Why brain stimulation isn’t what it’s cracked up to be

Why brain stimulation isn’t what it’s cracked up to be

Friday, 28 April 2017

OPINION: Interest in electrical brain stimulation has skyrocketed in recent years, both in the popular media and scientific literature.

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Image - The search to extend lifespan is gaining ground, but can we truly reverse the biology of ageing?

The search to extend lifespan is gaining ground, but can we truly reverse the biology of ageing?

Friday, 31 March 2017

OPINION: It was once a fringe topic for scientists and a pseudo-religious dream for others. But research into the biology of ageing, and consequently extending the lifespan of humans and animals, has become a serious endeavour.

Ageing research is often promoted as the key to the “eternal fountain of youth”, or an “elixir of immortality”. But the true promise of ageing research is that rather than tackling individual diseases one at a time, a single drug would treat all the diseases that arise in old age, at once.

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Image - Explainer: what’s cytomegalovirus and why do pregnant women need to know about it?

Explainer: what’s cytomegalovirus and why do pregnant women need to know about it?

Monday, 3 April 2017

OPINION: Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a virus transmitted from person to person via body fluids like urine or saliva. For people with a healthy immune system, CMV is likely to cause no more than a temporary fever or headache. But when a pregnant woman is infected, the results can be far more serious. The Conversation

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Image - High-fat diet hurts the microbiota in the oesophagus

High-fat diet hurts the microbiota in the oesophagus

Monday, 3 April 2017

UNSW researchers have observed how microbiota in the oesophagus is affected by a high-fat diet, depleting known beneficial bacteria and increasing the levels of “bad” bacteria.

The team’s paper, published in Scientific Reports, found a high-fat diet affects the microbiota in the oesophagus of rats.

First author Dr Nadeem Kaakoush says two other interesting things were observed.

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