News

Sorting out the structure of a Parkinson’s protein

Clumps of proteins that accumulate in brain cells are a hallmark of neurological diseases such as dementia, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease. Over the past several years, there has been much controversy over the structure of one of those proteins, known as alpha synuclein. MIT computational scientists have now modeled…

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How the brain loses and regains consciousness

Since the mid-1800s, doctors have used drugs to induce general anesthesia in patients undergoing surgery. Despite their widespread use, little is known about how these drugs create such a profound loss of consciousness. In a new study that tracked brain activity in human volunteers over a two-hour period as they…

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Some cancer mutations slow tumor growth

A typical cancer cell has thousands of mutations scattered throughout its genome and hundreds of mutated genes. However, only a handful of those genes, known as drivers, are responsible for cancerous traits such as uncontrolled growth. Cancer biologists have largely ignored the other mutations, believing they had little or no…

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Big medical data

With the recent launch of MIT’s Institute for Medical Engineering and Science, MIT News examines research with the potential to reshape medicine and health care through new scientific knowledge, novel treatments and products, better management of medical data, and improvements in health-care delivery. At the end of 2012, the National Public…

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