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14.09.20 How plants ensure regular seed spacing

An international team of researchers led by biologists from Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (HHU) has examined how seed formation is coordinated with fruit growth. In the latest edition of the journal Current Biology, they explain the genetic control mechanisms underlying the process.

29.06.20 Optogenetics: Controlling plant processes with light

A research team of biologists within the CEPLAS Cluster of Excellence at Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (HHU) has succeeded, together with colleagues from the University of Freiburg, to develop an optogenetic tool for use in plant research. As the researchers now report in NATURE METHODS, the tool can be used to control plant processes precisely using light.

09.06.20 New indication of a link between Alzheimer’s and diabetes

Pathological protein clumps are characteristic of a series of diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and type 2 diabetes. Scientists at Forschungszentrum Jülich, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (HHU), and Maastricht University have now used cryo-electron microscopy to obtain a sharp image for the first time of how individual molecules are arranged in protein strings, which constitute the deposits typical for diabetes. The structure of the fibrils is very similar to that of Alzheimer's fibrils. These findings are in line with other commonalities that researchers have discovered in the last few years.

12.05.20 "Education Offensive in times of Corona"

The American Philosophical Society (APS) welcomes its newly elected members for the year 2020. Every year, APS membership honors scientists and scholars from all disciplines for outstanding achievements. In addition to researchers from the USA, individual researchers from non-US countries also have the option of membership in the "International" section. This year, Eva Schlotheuber, who holds the chair of Medieval History at the Heinrich Heine University (HHU) as well as the chair of the Association of Historians in Germany (VHD), was appointed to the APS.

11.05.20 HHU physicists: No evidence of an influence of dark matter on the force between nuclei

Although most of the universe is made up of dark matter, very little is known about it. Physicists from Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (HHU) led by Prof. Stephan Schiller have used a high-precision experiment to look for interaction between dark matter and normal matter. They presented their findings in today’s edition of the journal NATURE.

07.04.20 New functional states observed in single enzymes

Scientists from the Chair of Molecular Physical Chemistry and the Institute of Pharmaceutical and Medicinal Chemistry at Heinrich-Heine-University as well as the Forschungszentrum Jülich together with a team of researchers at Clemson University, Clemson, USA and University of California, Los Angeles, USA developed and demonstrated the use of optical imaging methods to monitor single enzyme molecules in action. The fluorescence-based technique in combination with structural bioinformatics may accelerate the field of structural biology, helping scientists better understand how molecules are assembled, function, and interact, and ultimately may aid in modulating such properties.

12.03.20 Metabolic fossils from the origin of life

Since the origin of life, metabolic networks provide cells with nutrition and energy. Modern networks require thousands of enzymes that perform catalysis. Such networks must have arisen from simpler precursors, but how, and from what? Investigating the metabolism of modern cells, Xavier et al. have identified ancient and conserved autocatalytic networks at the core of microbial metabolism that require only cofactors and metals as catalysts.

09.03.20 Further coronavirus guidelines

The spread of the Covid-19 virus raises new questions concerning work and student life at Heinrich Heine University (HHU) every day. HHU and UKD managements are in constant exchange and the University’s management assesses the situation taking into account any new developments surrounding coronavirus. The following recommendations on this portal are updated on a regular basis.

28.02.20 Hydrogen energy at the root of life

A team of international researchers in Germany, France and Japan is making progress on answering the question of the origin of life. It could be that life originated from chemical reactions catalysed by minerals in submarine hydrothermal vents. These reactions still drive the metabolism of the most primitive forms of life today. As the team has now reported in the journal Nature Ecology and Evolution, hydrogen was both the key to and the fuel for the earliest biochemical processes that marked the beginnings of life.

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