Media release and Uni News from SNI members

University of Basel, December 8, 2017. Acrobatic Duo in the Cells
Just like an acrobatic duo, some proteins lend each other stability. Researchers at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel have discovered that the protein “Trigger factor” recognizes a partner by instable, flexible domains, to then together form a stable protein duo. The study has been published in the current issue of “Nature Communications”.


Swiss Nanoscience Institute, October 26, 2017. A nanoscale balance for individual cells
An interdisciplinary team from the University of Basel, ETH Zurich, and University College London have developed a new method that can be used to analyze individual live mammalian cells within a cell assembly. Based on a system of tiny cantilever probes, the technique records the cell mass over several days in millisecond steps and is accurate to within a few picograms. Using the new technique, the scientists have been able to observe for the first time that the cell mass fluctuates within the space of a few seconds. These findings and the new platform provide fundamental insights into the regulation of cell mass and into how this is disrupted in the event of illness. The study was presented in the journal Nature.


University of Basel, September 26, 2017. Bacterial Nanosized Speargun Works Like a Power Drill
In order to get rid of unpleasant competitors, some bacteria use a sophisticated weapon – a nanosized speargun. Researchers at the University of Basel’s Biozentrum have now gained new insights into the construction, mode of action and recycling of this weapon. As they report in the journal “Nature Microbiology”, the speargun drills a hole into the neighboring cells in only a few thousandths of a second and injects a cocktail of toxins.


Full media release can be found here.