Cancer Research

LONDON, March 13 /PRNewswire/ --

Silence Therapeutics plc (AIM: SLN) today announces a collaboration with AstraZeneca (LSE: AZN), focused on the development of a range of novel approaches for the delivery of siRNA molecules. The deal builds on Silence Therapeutics' leading expertise in the delivery of siRNA molecules, in particular its success with the functional systemic delivery of siRNA in vivo using its proprietary AtuPLEX technology. The financial details of this collaboration, in which both parties will contribute expertise and know-how, have not been disclosed.

This new deal is independent of the parties' three-year collaboration signed in July 2007, whose aim is to develop novel siRNA therapeutics against specific targets exclusive to AstraZeneca.

ZURICH, Switzerland and FAIRFIELD, New Jersey, March 13 /PRNewswire/ -- "The new Stonegate Report about Unigene confirms that we are uniquely positioned as the only biopharma company that manufactures peptides by recombinant techniques, while also having oral and nasal delivery systems to administer the peptides. Since the launch of "Fortical" in 2005 with partner Upsher-Smith Laboratories, "Fortical" has captured a near dominant 49% market share of the U.S. nasal calcitonin market that is estimated to be in the $200 million range."

Stonegate Securities, Inc. Unigene Laboratories Inc. (WKN 875852, ISIN US9047531002, UUL, OTCBB: UGNE)

ABBOTT PARK, Illinois, March 13 /PRNewswire/ --

- Two Sub Analyses from the CHARM Trial Evaluated Fistula Closure and Quality Of Life in Patients with Fistulas from Crohn's Disease

Abbott announced today the first two-year data for Crohn's disease patients with fistulas, which show that more than half of patients receiving HUMIRA(R) (adalimumab) had continued fistula healing. These data were presented at the European Crohn's and Colitis Organization (ECCO) Annual Meeting in Lyon, France. Fistulas are tunnels that form between the intestine and other parts of the body and are considered one of the most painful complications of Crohn's disease. Fistula healing in these studies was defined as complete cessation of fistula drainage.

Researchers have identified 25 genes regulating lifespan in two organisms separated by about 1.5 billion years in evolutionary change. At least 15 of those genes have very similar versions in humans, suggesting that scientists may be able to target those genes to help slow down the aging process and treat age-related conditions.

The two organisms used in this study, the single-celled budding yeast and the roundworm C. elegans, are commonly used models for aging research. Finding genes that are conserved between the two organisms is significant, researchers say, because the two species are so far apart on the evolutionary scale -- even farther apart than the tiny worms and humans. That, combined with the presence of similar human genes, is an indication that these genes could regulate human longevity as well.

PHILADELPHIA and LONDON, March 12 /PRNewswire/ --

- Osaka's Shizuo Akira Ranks Among The Hottest for Fourth Year; Once Again, United States Accounts for More Than Half of the Top Researchers

Thomson Scientific today announced the results of its annual roundup of the "hottest" researchers and research papers. In the March/April issue of Science Watch (www.sciencewatch.com), Thomson Scientific identifies the top 10 authors who fielded the highest number of Hot Papers in 2006-2007. The annual Science Watch roundup also lists the scientific reports published during 2007 (aside from reviews) that were most cited by year's end.

Wild sex is a staple of nature films, but there is one sex scene David Attenborough has never narrated: the mating ritual of yeast. That's right: yeast. Sex isn't just limited to lions, birds of paradise, and aphids; single-celled fungi do it too. Although most people don't like to hear the words 'fungus' and 'sex' used in the same sentence, yeast mating is a remarkable phenomenon and worth a closer look.

You can see this amazing scene, played out billions of times every day in wine vats and under oak trees, captured on film. As is the case with most wild mating rituals, filming yeast sex requires great patience - yeast are slow to commit and even when they do, they don't rush things. The beginning of foreplay itself takes several hours, as you can see below:

Macrophages, derived from Greek and meaning “eating cells”, are biological cells that spring from white blood cells to destroy foreign or dying cells. They are basically cellular “policemen” that can differentiate between good and bad cells.

But some cancer cells over-express the molecular protein that macrophages recognize as friendly — they create a fake ID — which allows the cancer to avoid being perceived as foreign by macrophages. In addition, the molecules involved in the recognition mechanism appear somewhat variable from person to person, with possible links to success or failure in transplantation of stem cells.

LAS VEGAS, March 11 /PRNewswire/ --

Altogen Biosystems (http://www.altogen.com) announced launch of new contract research services. Located in Las Vegas, NV, Altogen Custom Services focus on providing specialized biotechnology and pharmaceutical services, including RNA Interference (RNAi) services, generation of stably-expressing cell lines, assay development, screening and transfection services. In particular, the company will draw upon their unique experience with over hundred cancer cell lines and expertise in polymer and nanoparticle-based gene delivery technologies.

CALGARY, Canada, March 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Dr. Brad Thompson, President and CEO of Oncolytics Biotech Inc. (TSX: ONC, NASDAQ: ONCY), will present a corporate overview of the Company at the BioSquare 2008 Conference on Thursday, March 13, 2008. The event is being held at the Congress Center in Basel, Switzerland from March 12-14, 2008.

About Oncolytics Biotech Inc.

Cells are coded with several programs for self-destruction. Many cells die peacefully. Others cause a ruckus on their way out.

Some programmed cell death pathways simply and quietly remove unwanted cells, noted a team of University of Washington (UW) researchers who study the mechanisms of cell destruction.

Then there is the alarm-ringing death of a potentially dangerous cell, such as a cell infected with Salmonella, they added. These dying cells spill chemical signals and get a protective response. The resulting inflammation, which the body launches in self-defense, can at times backfire and damage vital tissues.


This schematic shows the cell death pathway called pyroptosis, Greek for going down in flames. When activated by a toxin or an infection, the enzyme caspase-1 initiates several reactions inside of the cell, some of which lead to DNA damage, others to the release of chemical distress signals called cytokines, and others to the formation in the cell membrane of tiny pores that let water flood in until the cell swells, bursts and spills its contents. Credit: Image by David W. Ehlert and Brad Cookson, University of Washington.