CEMIR

New mechanism allows the immune system to detect and respond to HIV

Nearly 40 million people were living with HIV in 2017, the UN says, with just over half taking antiretroviral therapy. These drugs have cut AIDS-related deaths by more than half since the 2004 peak, but the disease cannot be cured. A new mechanism uncovered by a Norwegian research group could improve the chances of developing one.

Cholesterol crystals play an active role in stroke, heart attacks

Cholesterol crystals form from “bad” cholesterol and are found in plaques that line blood vessels. When these plaques rupture, they can cause heart attacks or strokes. New research suggests that cholesterol crystals in plaques can actually trigger strokes and heart attacks.

How cancer breaks down your muscles

A solid tumour can cause muscle cells in the body to self-destruct. Many cancer patients die from the consequences. Now researchers are discovering more about how cancer cells in a tumour can take control of muscle cell wasting and trigger a chronic, serious condition.

How tuberculosis hides in the body

The tuberculosis vaccine only works for children. BCG (bacille Calmette-Guerin) doesn’t protect you as an adult. Now we know more about how the bacterium avoids being detected.

Using Big Data to understand immune system responses

An enzyme found in many bacteria, including the bacterium that gives us strep throat, has given mankind a cheap and effective tool with which to edit our own genes. This technology, called CRISPR, is also being used to understand how the immune system responds to a viral attack.

Learning more about preeclampsia

Preeclampsia doesn’t usually cause complications, but sometimes things go wrong. That’s why research in this field is so important.