News Archive

 

Photo: David Bartel and Lubomir Nechev

Knockout punch: the promise of RNAi

June 28, 2005

Deep in your DNA, a gene has gone haywire and is driving up the production of a protein that is messing with your body. Wouldn’t it be great to sift through all your 20,000-something genes, find the offender, and swat it like a fly? Fortunately, a new technique eventually could do just that.

Image: Diagram of how insulin aids glucose absorption

Fat chance: the biology of obesity

June 22, 2005

Better understanding of fat-cell hormones will help us attack the twin epidemics of obesity and diabetes. Harvey Lodish, a Founding Whitehead Member and professor of biology at MIT, has pioneered this field.

David Bartel honored by French academy

June 15, 2005

Whitehead Institute Member David Bartel is one of two scientists to receive the annual Louis-D. Prize from the Institut de France, an organization similar in many respects to the National Academy of Sciences in the United States.

Photo:  Edward Kennedy and David Page

Kennedy brings stem cell quest to Whitehead

June 15, 2005

The United States should follow the lead of Massachusetts in legalizing responsible human embryonic stem cell research, Senator Edward Kennedy declared on June 2 at Whitehead.

Image: Diagrams of protein fibers

Unweaving amyloid fibers to solve prion puzzles

June 8, 2005

Amyloid fibers are best known as the plaque that gunks up neurons in people with neurodegenerative illnesses such as Alzheimer’s and Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease—the human analog of mad cow disease. But even though amyloids are common and implicated in a host of conditions, researchers haven’t been able to identify their precise molecular structures.

Image: Microarry results

Array for the cell

May 25, 2005

Figuring what a gene does is hard work, but it’s vastly easier than it was a few years ago. Back then, you would laboriously isolate a single gene, tinker with it to get some inkling about its purpose, and then start speculating about how it might collaborate with other genes. Now, microarrays let researchers gather exponentially more data about gene expression.

Phillip Sharp appointed to Whitehead Board of Directors

May 11, 2005

Phillip Sharp, Nobel laureate and founding director of the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has been named to the Board of Directors of Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research.

Image: Tissue samples from chimeric mice

Researchers discover mechanism for multiplying adult stem cells

May 5, 2005

Researchers in the lab of Whitehead Institute Member Rudolf Jaenisch have discovered a mechanism that might enable scientists to multiply adult stem cells quickly and efficiently.

Image: Tissue samples

Cancer exploits the body's wound-healing process, study finds

May 5, 2005

Scientists have known for the last decade that a link exists between wound healing and cancer. Now scientists in the lab of Whitehead Institute Member Robert Weinberg have discovered the process by which tumors hijack normal wound-healing processes and use them for their own purposes.

Image: National Academy of Sciences logo

Whitehead Interim Director David Page named to National Academy of Sciences

May 4, 2005

Whitehead Institute Interim Director David Page is one of 72 new members of the National Academy of Sciences elected in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research.

Image: Function of MEI-S332

When cells divide

April 27, 2005

Cells are dividing all the time, and that’s a good thing. If they didn’t, our tissue and organs couldn’t replenish themselves, and pretty soon we’d be done for. But when cell division goes wrong, it can have disastrous results, such as cancer and birth defects. Scientists in the lab of Whitehead Member Terry Orr-Weaver have uncovered one of the primary mechanisms governing cell division.

Hidde Ploegh joins Whitehead Institute faculty

March 30, 2005

Molecular biologist Hidde Ploegh has just been appointed to the faculty of Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research.

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