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How to design more reliable nano- and micro-electro-mechanical systems

Scientists analyse the deformation behaviour of silicon in nano/micro devices

02-Jul-2020

Mobile phones, data storage for laptops, solar cells, power electronics for renewable energy, or sensors in cars are applications where silicon is the first-choice material despite that its mechanical behaviour at elevated temperature is not yet fully understood. To design efficient and reliable ...

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Bacteria leave signature in colon cancer cells

Scientists identify mutations in the genome caused by the intestinal bacterium Escherichia coli

08-Jun-2020

Some bacterial pathogens cause damage in the genomes of their infected cells which could lead to the initiation of cancer. While it is difficult to link an infection with an onset of cancer that arises many years later in life, researchers have been looking for definitive proof that such links ...

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Environmentally friendly production of mandelic acid

Scientists found a method for the "green" production of the important starting material for the chemical industry

29-May-2020

Sometimes potentially useful enzymes are not easy to discover because their biocatalytic capabilities may go beyond their natural and thus known range of action. By recombining a newly discovered enzymatic capability, a research team from the Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology led ...

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"Ultimate cell sorter" developed: combining imaging of deformed cells and AI

High-speed method for identifying and sorting cells requires no external cell labeling

27-May-2020

In medicine and biology, there is great interest in efficient and inexpensive methods for identifying and separating different cell types, for example for medical diagnostics or for regenerative therapies using stem cells. Up to this point, the method of choice has been the so-called flow ...

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Rolling into the deep

Microroller could to revolutionize the minimally invasive treatment of illnesses

25-May-2020

A team of scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems (MPI-IS) in Stuttgart invented a tiny microrobot that resembles a white blood cell travelling through the circulatory system. It has the shape, the size and the moving capabilities of leukocytes and could perhaps be well ...

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Interorganellar signals regulate longevity

Lysosome to mitochondria communication

20-May-2020

As people get older, they often feel less energetic, mobile or active. This may be due in part to a decline in mitochondria, the tiny powerhouses inside of our cells, which provide energy and regulate metabolism. In fact, mitochondria decline with age not only in humans, but in many species. Why ...

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Weighing an ant on top of an elephant: Quantum jump tipping the balance

Tiny change in the mass of individual atoms for the first time measured

08-May-2020

A new door to the quantum world: when an atom absorbs or releases energy via the quantum jump of an electron, it becomes heavier or lighter, according to Einstein’s theory of relativity (E = mc²). However, the effect is minuscule for a single atom. Nevertheless, the team of Klaus Blaum and Sergey ...

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The lipid code

New chemical tools can control the concentration of lipids in living cells

21-Apr-2020

Lipids, or fats, have many functions in our body: They form membrane barriers, store energy or act as messengers, which regulate cell growth and hormone release. Many of them are also biomarkers for severe diseases. So far, it has been very difficult to analyze the functions of these molecules in ...

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Using alveolar epithelia as a model for corona infection

Researchers are using organ-like cell cultures to investigate compounds to combat the new virus

15-Apr-2020

Before new drugs can be administered to people, researchers first have to investigate their effects using cell cultures and animal testing. Human cell cultures are increasingly being used as a model system for this purpose. At the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology in Berlin, a research ...

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When ions rattle their cage

How the investigation of ion oscillations can lead to better batteries

07-Apr-2020

Electrolytes play a key role in many areas: They are crucial for the storage of energy in our body as well as in batteries. In order to release energy, ions - charged atoms - must move in a liquid such as water. Until now the precise mechanism by which they move through the atoms and molecules of ...

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