Apicomplexan Parasites, Pathogen Genome Informatics, and the Evolution of Eukaryotic Organelles: Part 2: The apicomplexan plastid: Something old, something new, something borrowed, something green (37:11)

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Antibiotics are effective because they kill bacteria without harming humans and other eukaryotes (organisms with cells that contain nuclei). So why are the eukaryotic parasites responsible for malaria and toxoplasmosis killed by drugs like clindamycin? Multidisciplinary studies integrating molecular genetics, cell biology, biochemistry, pharmacology and computational genomics reveal that such drugs target an unusual organelle. The "apicoplast" was acquired when an ancestral organism 'ate' a...

Neglected disease research and development: how much are we really spending

submitted by: mparkinson
The need for new pharmaceutical tools to prevent and treat neglected diseases is widely accepted. The creation of a vaccine for HIV/AIDS, more effective diagnostics for tuberculosis (TB), and better treatments for leishmaniasis and sleeping sickness would greatly improve health in the developing world in line with the United Nations Millennium Development Goals. However, funders wishing to invest in this vitally important area currently face an information gap. There is little consensus on...
Authors: Mary Moran, Javier Guzman, Anne-laure Ropars, Alina Mcdonald, Nicole Jameson, Brenda Omune, Sam Ryan, Lindsey Wu

Tuberculosis: A Persistent Threat to Global Health - Part 1: Tuberculosis: The Once and Future Plague (27:33)

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Human population growth and urbanization have accelerated dramatically in recent centuries, providing unprecedented opportunities for microbes that use our bodies as vehicles for their own propagation and transmission. These conditions have led to the emergence of virulent new pathogens and the increased prevalence of "classic" scourges, such as Mycobacterium tuberculosis. This tenacious microbe is transmitted via infectious aerosols produced by individuals with pulmonary tuberculosis....

The Dynamic Bacterial Cell: Part 1: Dynamics of Bacterial Chromosome Organization, Segregation, and Cytokinesis (34:32)

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Most bacterial cells have their genes arranged in a single circle of DNA. The circle of DNA plus some attached proteins is referred to as the bacterial chromosome. Up until quite recently, it was thought that the chromosome in the tiny bacteria cell resembled a tangled ball of yarn. It is now known that multiple factors cooperate to condense DNA into a highly dynamic assembly of supercoiled loops. Although there is variability in the lower levels of chromosome structure, the global...

Technical Issues Associated with Future Large-Scale Cellulosic Biofuels Production: Part 1: The Argument for Biofuels (33:32)

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The first segment of this presentation describes the rationale for using plant biomass as a source of fuels and presents information about how much energy could be obtained in this way. Examples of the kinds of plants that are likely to be used are presented along with comments on some of the issues, such as losses to disease and effects of various cropping systems on soil quality, that need additional research. For further information see:...

Host-Pathogen Interaction and Human Disease: Part 1: What is a Pathogen? Trying to Understand Human Biology by the Study of Pathogenic Bacteria (37:48)

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Ninety percent of the cells humans carry are microbes. Only a few of the bacteria we encounter are pathogenic and can cause disease. Pathogens possess the inherent ability to cross anatomic barriers or breach other host defenses that limit the microbes that make up our normal flora. A significant part of human evolution has gone into developing ways to thwart microbial intrusion. In turn, microbes have come up with clever ways to avoid and circumvent host defenses but human — microbe...

Malaria presented by Joseph DeRisi, June 2006 - Part 1: Malaria: Background & Overview (21:19)

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This brief set of three lectures gives a very general overview of malaria, the disease and Plasmodium falciparum, the causative agent of the most deadly form. Basic research as well as drug development efforts will also be covered in parts two and three of this series. For further information see: http://www.ascb.org/ibioseminars/DeRisi/DeRisi1.cfm

Danger from the Wild: HIV, Can We Conquer It? by David Baltimore, Feb. 2007 - Part 1: Introduction to Viruses: HIV and Non-equilibrium Viruses (34:06)

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In this set of lectures, I describe the threat facing the world from the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and a bold proposal on how we might meet the challenge of eliminating this disease by engineering the immune system. In part 1, I provide a broad introduction to viruses, describing their basic properties and my own history of studying the replication RNA viruses which led to the discovery of reverse transcriptase. I also illustrate the distinguishing features of equilibrium viruses...

Intracellular Parasitism by Trypanosoma cruzi and Leishmania by Norma Andrews, April 2007 - Part 1: Trypanosoma cruzi and Chagas' Disease (19:23)

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Trypanosoma cruzi and Leishmania are closely related intracellular protozoan parasites that cause serious diseases throughout the world. In the first part of this lecture, I will present background material on the biology of Trypanosoma cruzi and the history of its discovery as an important agent of human disease in Latin America. I will also discuss the main characteristics of the disease, and the current efforts to stop human transmission. For more information see:...

Plant Viruses and Crops by Roger Beachy, April 2008 - Part 1: Cell and Molecular Biology of Plant Virus Infection: Early Events and Mechanisms of Pathogenesis

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This seminar describes the cell and molecular biology of plant virus infection. The first lecture will discuss how virus replication centers are set up in plants and how viruses use host cell mechanisms to facilitate cell to cell movement and eventual pathogenesis.

For further information see: http://www.ascb.org/ibioseminars/Beachy/Beachy1.cfm