• A neuronal cocktail for motivation

    ‘A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step’ is a popular adage that talks about the initial thrust required to embark on a task. However, once begun, how do we persevere on the job and not let it fall apart like a New Year resolution? How do we stay motivated?

    Well, these are not just philosophical deliberations, but compelling science projects for neuroscience aficionados. Scientists have in fact been on the lookout for the neuronal and molecular players which are at the root of governing motivation.

  • The honey bee dance: Different moves, one message

    It is early in the morning. Ebi and his colleagues try not to twitch as they stare intently at a rectangular box filled with sugary treats. These aren’t for them, but for the honey bees that they study. The tiny buzzers toggle between the sugar ‘feeder’ and the hive, which are a few metres apart. Interestingly, the bees that visit the feeder aren’t secretive about this new found food source. They graciously advertise its location to their nest mates and over time more bees are seen buzzing to the feeder. 

  • Sensei RNA: Iron fist in a velvet glove

    I once came across a quote that said – “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.”  Scientists would vouch for this statement because scientific pursuit has the habit of offering chance discoveries, if we think about things differently. 

    Here is a story behind one serendipitous discovery from the lab of Arati Ramesh.

  • Protein modifications hold the key to success of plant viruses

    Plants destroy viral toxic proteins as part of their defence, while the viruses use the plant machinery to protect their toxic proteins and cause symptoms.

  • Seeking the location of MCPyV Integration in Merkel Cell Tumours

    Rare diseases are rarely studied in-depth, and rare cancers even less. Tackling this deficit of information, and understanding one rare, aggressive cancer has become the focus of research for Dr. Reety Arora at the National Centre for Biological Sciences. With collaborators at the ACTREC–Tata Memorial Centre and the University of Michigan, Dr.
  • VAGABONDING FEMALE BUTTERFLIES WEIGH IN ON REPRODUCTIVE STRATEGIES

    Reproductive function of female butterflies burdens their capabilities for long-distance flight, which may affect populations in a changing, uncertain world

     

  • Air pollution impacts the health of wild pollinators

    Our air is the one thing that surrounds all of us. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 9 of the world’s 10 most polluted cities are now in India. Yet, we have almost no idea how air pollution is affecting other organisms who breathe the same air as we do. In some of the first research in the world to try to address the physiological and molecular impacts of air pollution on our wild plants and animals, scientists from the Bangalore Life Science Cluster show that air pollution could be devastating for organisms we rely on most for our own survival – like the honey bee.

  • When close physical contacts are good, and guilt free

    Image description: Line drawing of the Drosophila head showing the compound eye (pink). Individual repeating units of the compund eye are seen and individual cellular structures superimposed in each unit. Image credit: Dr. Deepti Trivedi.

    Imagine diving into a eukaryotic cell.

  • Micromanaging calcium levels in neurons: From flies to humans

    Calcium is as vital to neurons as musical notes are for a song. Levels of calcium oscillate like crescendos, regulating neuronal communication, function and survival. Also, much like cringing to wrong notes, calcium imbalance is seldom tolerated by neurons. In fact, derailed cellular calcium levels are a harbinger of certain neurodegenerative disorders in humans. Hence to regulate calcium traffic, neurons harbor vigilant protein passages and compartments.

  • SARS-CoV-2 genome sequencing effort

    COVID-19 response by scientists at DBT-inStem and NCBS-TIFR, Bengaluru

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