For this week, we have a set of interesting releases.
1) Detecting explosives using chemical compounds
Small molecules made of a metal ion attached to an organic compound can be used to detect explosives made of nitroaromatic compounds, like picric acid and trinitrotoluene (TNT). With further research, these can go on to replace the conventional metal detectors we all walk through in airports and malls.
2) Anti-tumour properties in Sapota
Extracts of sapota induce cell death in cancerous cells, a recent study has found. The phytochemicals (plant based chemicals) in sapota extract activates cell-death pathways. Tumour growth was inhibited, and lifespan of tumour bearing animals increased, when sapota extract was used.
3) Telling tails: Molecules follow morphology in langur taxonomy
The Hanuman langur’s long-standing identity crisis might finally be resolved. Researchers have divided the Hanuman langur into 3-4 different species based on genetic differences; this can help in identifying unique populations that could be threatened by human activity.
4) Protein interactions that make Staphylococcus infectious
Scientists at IISc have characterized the molecular structure of protein interactions that result in infections byStaphylococcus bacteria. The molecular interactions are triggers for the progress of disease from a relatively harmless persistent stage to the virulent stage.
5) IISc student wins accolades in international photo competition
Photographs by Souvik Mandal, a PhD student at the Indian Institute of Science, have won accolades in the BMC Ecology Image Competition 2014. His photographs of insects feeding on plants, and a pair spotted owlets sneaking out of a nesthole in a tress, have been mentioned in the 'Highly commended' category. Souvik captured both of them in the picturesque IISc campus.