Amino acid sequences are key to the properties of silks

Although mankind has been using silk for millennia, many aspects of its properties and molecular structure remain unknown. Now, a new study from the RIKEN Center for Sustainable Resource Science (CSRS) in Japan reveals that ...

The deadly toxin acrolein has a useful biological role

Scientists from RIKEN in Japan have discovered that acrolein—a toxic substance produced in cells during times of oxidative stress—in fact may play a role in preventing the process of fibrillation, an abnormal clumping ...

Rays provide power for an electric generator

Scientists from the RIKEN Quantitative Biology Center in Japan removed the electric organ from a torpedo and chemically stimulated the organ by injecting a solution of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine though a syringe. ...

Jawless fish brains more similar to ours than previously thought

Researchers at the RIKEN Evolutionary Morphology laboratory and other institutions in Japan have shown that complex divisions in the vertebrate brain first appeared before the evolution of jaws, more than 500 million years ...

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