Biomarker

A biomarker, or biological marker, generally refers to a measurable indicator of some biological state or condition. The term is also occasionally used to refer to a substance the presence of which indicates the existence of a living organism. Further, life forms are known to shed unique chemicals, including DNA, into the environment as evidence of their presence in a particular location.

  • Better Contrast Agents Based on Nanoparticles

    Scientists at the University of Basel have developed nanoparticles which can serve as efficient contrast agents for magnetic resonance imaging. This new type of nanoparticles produce around ten times more contrast than common contrast agents and are responsive to specific environments. The journal Chemical Communications has published these results.

  • Blood pressure medication paves the way for approaches to managing Barrett's syndrome

    Svein Olav Bratlie

    New ways of using mechanisms behind certain blood pressure medications may in the future spare some patient groups both discomfort and lifelong concern over cancer of the esophagus. This, in any case, is the goal of several studies of patients with Barrett's syndrome at Sahlgrenska Academy. “If we could filter out those who are not at greater risk, it would represent huge gains for both patients and health care providers,” says Svein Olav Bratlie, a researcher in gastro surgery and clinician at Sahlgrenska University Hospital. It is estimated that between one and two percent of the Swedish population has Barrett's syndrome, a condition in which the membrane in the lower part of the esophagus becomes more like that of the intestine and more acid-resistant. Barrett's syndrome is preceded by the common reflux affliction that involves long-term leakage of stomach acid up into the esophagus.

  • Circulating Immune Cells as Biomarkers for Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis

    Staining of surface molecules (CD11 in red, CD33 in green) on cells in lung tissue, nuclei in blue. MDSC are positive for both surface markers and consequently appear orange (arrow). Source: Helmholtz Zentrum München

    Researchers at Helmholtz Zentrum München, a partner in the German Center for Lung Research (DZL), have discovered that the number of myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSC) is increased in the blood of patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). The higher the number of MDSC, the more limited the lung function. The findings on this new biomarker have now been published in the ‘European Respiratory Journal’.

  • DigiWest® multiplex protein profiling technology published in Nature Communications

    The NMI is a service provider for Micro Channel Systems. © NMI

    Reutlingen, Germany, September 26, 2016 – The Natural and Medical Sciences Institute at the University of Tübingen (NMI), a private research foundation, and its contract research provider NMI TT Pharmaservices today announced the publication of their proprietary DigiWest® protein profiling method in the peer-reviewed scientific journal Nature Communications.

  • IMI SAFE-T and C-Path PSTC Obtain Regulatory Support For New Liver Safety Biomarkers

    Micrograph of an intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (right of image) adjacent to benign hepatocytes (left of image). H&E stain.

    FDA and EMA Letters of Support Pave the Way for Clinical Qualification. The Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) SAFE-T (Safer and Faster Evidence Based Translation) Consortium and The Critical Path Institute (C-Path) announced today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) each issued a Biomarker Letter of Support for new liver safety biomarkers investigated by the SAFE-T Drug-Induced Liver Injury Work Package, and the Predictive Safety Testing Consortium’s (PSTC) Hepatotoxicity Working Group.

  • Kardiologie-Innovationen: Biomarker für effektive und sichere Diagnosen

    Wichtige Neuerungen der medikamentösen Herz-Kreislauf-Medizin stehen auf der Agenda der Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Kardiologie in Mannheim. Besonders dynamisch entwickelt sich das Gebiet der Biomarker, die Diagnosen rascher, sicherer und effektiver machen.

  • Peptides as tags in fluorescence microscopy

    Synapses of brain cells made visible using fluorescence tagging based on antibodies: pre-synapses (red) and post-synapses (green) appear out of focus; the synaptic cleft is not fully resolved. (Picture: Franziska Neubert & Sören Doose)

    Advance in biomedical imaging: The Biocenter of the University of Würzburg in close collaboration with the University of Copenhagen has developed an alternative approach to fluorescent tagging of proteins. The new probes are practicable and compatible with high-resolution microscopic procedures. Fluorescence microscopy visualizes the molecular elements of cells. Proteins of nerve cells, for instance, can be labelled using probes which are subsequently excited with light to fluoresce. In the end, the fluorescence signal is used to generate microscopic images of the real position, arrangement and number of proteins.

  • Proteins as an early warning system for type 1 diabetes?

    Please find the caption in the text.

    Certain proteins in the blood of children can predict incipient type 1 diabetes, even before the first symptoms appear. A team of scientists at the Helmholtz Zentrum München, partners in the German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD), reported these findings in the ‘Diabetologia’ journal. The work was based on two large studies that are intended to explain the mechanisms behind the development of type 1 diabetes (BABYDIAB and BABYDIET*). The study participants are children who have a first-degree relative with type 1 diabetes and who consequently have an increased risk of developing the disease due to the familial predisposition.

  • Researchers uncover protein-based “cancer signature”

    Gene expression level of individual ribosomal proteins (RP) in different types of cancer (blue: lower level; red: higher level compared to normal tissue). University of Basel, Biozentrum

    A research team at the University of Basel’s Biozentrum has investigated the expression of ribosomal proteins in a wide range of human tissues including tumors and discovered a cancer type specific signature. As the researchers report in “Genome Biology” this “cancer signature” could potentially be used to predict the progression of the disease. Proteins are the building blocks of life. They are produced by molecular machines, called ribosomes. A human ribosome contains some eighty ribosomal proteins. Prof. Mihaela Zavolan’s research group at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel has now discovered that about a quarter of the ribosomal proteins have tissue-specific expression and that different cancer types have their own individual expression pattern of ribosomal proteins. In the future, these patterns may serve as a prognostic marker for cancer and may point towards new therapeutic opportunities.

  • Spezifisch bindender Radioligand ermöglicht neuen Operationsansatz für Prostatakrebs

    Spezifisch bindender Radioligand ermöglicht neuen Operationsansatz für Prostatakrebs | Durch an der TUM entwickelten Radioliganden können auch sehr kleine Metastasen sichtbar gemacht werden. Auf dieser PET/CT-Aufnahme ist ein veränderter Lymphknoten zu erkennen (Pfeil). Foto: Nuklearmedizin / TUM

    Prostatakrebs ist eine der häufigsten Krebserkrankungen bei Männern. Selbst nachdem die Prostata operativ entfernt wurde, können sich in Lymphknoten im Becken neue Metastasen bilden. Forscherinnen und Forscher der Fakultäten für Medizin und Chemie an der Technischen Universität München (TUM) haben gemeinsam eine Methode entwickelt, mit der diese Tochtergeschwüre sichtbar gemacht und entfernt werden können, wenn sie noch sehr klein sind. Dazu wird ein Radioligand in den Blutkreislauf injiziert, der sich selektiv an ein Protein bindet, welches im menschlichen Körper sonst sehr selten ist.