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Breast cancer cells have to learn to walk before they can run

La Jolla, CA – Early stage breast cancer that has not yet invaded the surrounding tissues may already contain highly motile cells, which brings the tumor one step closer to metastasis, report researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies.

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New plant study reveals a "deeply hidden" layer of the transcriptome

La Jolla, CA – Cells keep a close watch over the transcriptome – the totality of all parts of the genome that are expressed in any given cell at any given time. Researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and the University of Missouri-Kansas City teamed up to peel back another layer of transcriptional regulation and gain new insight into how genomes work.

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Aging gracefully requires taking out the trash

La Jolla, CA – Suppressing a cellular cleanup-mechanism known as autophagy can accelerate the accumulation of protein aggregates that leads to neural degeneration. In an upcoming issue of Autophagy, scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies report for the first time that the opposite is true as well: Boosting autophagy in the nervous system of fruit flies prevented the age-dependent accumulation of cellular damage in neurons and promoted longevity.

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Salk Appoints Rebecca Newman to Vice President of Development

La Jolla, CA – The Salk Institute for Biological Studies today announced the appointment of Rebecca Newman to the position of Vice President of Development. She will oversee the Institute's entire fundraising program and will lead all related strategic planning and donor relation activities. Newman officially starts in February.

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Molecular "trip switch" shuts down inflammatory response

La Jolla, CA – Like a circuit breaker that prevents electrical wiring from overheating and bringing down the house, a tiny family of three molecules stops the immune system from mounting an out-of-control, destructive inflammatory response against invading pathogens, researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies have found.

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Salk stem cell researchers receive New Faculty Awards

La Jolla, CA – Salk scientists Leanne Jones and Lei Wang today were awarded New Faculty Awards totaling 5.3 million by the governing board of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM). The funds will be split between both researchers over the next five years.

The New Faculty Awards are designed to encourage and foster the next generation of stem cell scientists in the critical early stages of their careers by supporting research across the full range of stem cell types – human and animal, adult and embryonic.

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New chimeric mouse model for human liver diseases, drug testing

La Jolla, CA – Cells cultured in the lab are like a fish out of water. Often, their behavior does not reflect their biological function within an entire organ or organism, which, for example, turns studying human liver cells into a big challenge.

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Salk scientist wins 2007 McKnight Neuroscience of Brain Disorders Award

La Jolla, CA – Dr. Andrew Dillin, an assistant professor in the Molecular and Cellular Biology Laboratory at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, has been selected for the 2007 McKnight Neuroscience of Brain Disorders Award. He will receive $300,000 over a three-year period to study "age-associated neuroprotection by insulin/IGF-1 signaling."

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A mutation named Magellan steers nerve cells off course

La Jolla, CA – Newly launched nerve cells in a growing embryo must chart their course to distant destinations, and many of the means they use to navigate have yet to surface. In a study published in the current issue of the journal Neuron, scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies have recovered a key signal that guides motor neurons – the nascent cells that extend from the spinal cord and must find their way down the length of limbs such as arms, wings and legs.

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Three Salk scientists named 2007 AAAS Fellows

LA JOLLA, CA—Professors Ursula Bellugi, Walter Eckhart and Greg E. Lemke have been awarded the distinction of AAAS Fellow, an honor that is bestowed upon members of the American Association for the Advancement of Science by their peers.

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