Model analyzes how viruses escape the immune system

One reason it’s so difficult to produce effective vaccines against some viruses, including influenza and HIV, is that these viruses mutate very rapidly. This allows them to evade the antibodies generated by a particular vaccine, through a process known as “viral escape.”

MIT researchers have now devised a new way to computationally model viral escape, based on models that were originally developed to analyze language. The model can predict which sections of viral surface proteins are more likely to mutate in a way that enables viral escape, and it can also identify sections that are less likely to mutate, making

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Rockefeller begins testing of new COVID-19 antibody drug in people

With the green light from the FDA, Rockefeller scientists started human trials this week for a new monoclonal antibody drug as a potential treatment for COVID-19.

Monoclonal antibodies are mass-produced replicas of natural antibodies made by the immune system to fight viruses. Designed to prevent people with early COVID-19 from developing severe disease, the treatment can be life-saving and is urgently needed as hospitals continue to be inundated by repeated surges of infection, and mass vaccinations are still several months away.

Monoclonal antibodies attaching to coronaviruses.

“If administered early, monoclonal antibodies could stop the virus in its tracks before the

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In new research, ‘e-nose’ and computer vision help cook the perfect chicken

Skoltech researchers have found a way to use chemical sensors and computer vision to determine when grilled chicken is cooked just right. These tools can help restaurants monitor and automate cooking processes in their kitchens and perhaps one day even end up in your ‘smart’ oven.

The paper detailing the results of this research, supported by a Russian Science Foundation grant, was published in the journal Food Chemistry.

Image credit: Pixabay (Free Pixabay license)

How do you tell that chicken breast on your grill is ready for your plate? Well, you probably look at it closely and smell it

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DALL·E: Creating Images from Text

The current advancement in neural networks lets to perform text generation or image generation tasks. Researchers have recently extended such abilities and introduced a neural network DALL·E that can convert text descriptions to images.

The system can use the compositional structure of language to generate plausible images for lots of sentences. For instance, it lets to render the image from the desired viewpoint or according to the chosen 3D style (as visualize a turtle made of wireframe). It is possible to depict the internal and external structure by cross-sectional views or macro photographs.

Furthermore, DALL·E can combine unrelated concepts to

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Protecting lungs from ventilator-induced injury

An unfortunate truth about the use of mechanical ventilation to save the lives of patients in respiratory distress is that the pressure used to inflate the lungs is likely to cause further lung damage.

In a new study, scientists identified a molecule that is produced by immune cells during mechanical ventilation to try to decrease inflammation but isn’t able to completely prevent ventilator-induced injury to the lungs.

The team is working on exploiting that natural process in pursuit of a therapy that could lower the chances for lung damage in patients on ventilators. Delivering high levels of the helpful molecule

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Nanomaterials for the Clearance of Senescent Cells

Senescent cell accumulation is a contributing cause of aging, and targeted destruction of senescent cells with senolytic therapies produces meaningful rejuvenation and reversal of age-related disease in animal models. First generation senolytics are largely repurposed small molecules. Second generation senolytics will include a range of more carefully designed strategies, including the nanoparticles allowing for selective delivery of therapeutics to senescent cells that are the topic of this open access paper. Such nanoparticles can be used as the basis for both detection of senescent cells and their destruction, a promising attribute in the present environment in which there is

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