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Here, researchers explore the mechanisms governing changes in cell behavior during reprogramming. Many of the aspects of aging found in cells taken from old tissues can be reversed via the process of reprogramming these cells into induced pluripotent stem cells. Mitochondrial function is restored to youthful levels, for example, as well as much of the epigenetic signature that determines protein production and cell function.

GATA6 in the Mechanisms of Functional Rejuvenation of Cell Properties

Image credit: Pixabay (Free Pixabay license)

There are issues that are not addressed, such as mutations, but this effect of reprogramming is sufficiently interesting to have given rise to several research programs and the company Turn.bio, seeking to build a therapy on the basis of partially reprogramming cells to the point at which rejuvenation occurs.

Scientists know that cellular reprogramming can reverse the process of cellular aging that leads to a decline in the activities and functions of mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSCs), but the underlying mechanisms haven’t been clear. Newly reported research has identified a key role for a protein known as GATA6, in this reversal process. Researchers used cellular reprogramming to establish a genetically identical young and old cell model. They began by isolating MSCs from human synovial fluid (SF-MSCs), and reprogrammed them into induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) using the Yamanaka transcription factors. Then they differentiated these iPSCs back to MSCs, in effect rejuvenating the MSCs.

The scientists next conducted an analysis of the cells to determine if there were any changes in global gene expression resulting from the reprogramming. They found that the expression of GATA6, a protein that plays an important role in gut, lung, and heart development, was repressed in the reprogrammed cells compared with the control cells. This repression led to increased activity of a protein called sonic hedgehog (SHH) that is essential to embryonic development, as well as the expression level of another protein, FOXP1, which is necessary for proper development of the brain, heart, and lung.

To determine which of the Yamanaka transcription factors were involved in repressing GATA6 in the iPSCs, the team analyzed GATA6 expression in response to the knockdown of each factor. The results indicated that only OCT4 and KLF4 were able to regulate GATA6 activity, a finding that is consistent with that of several previous studies.

Link: https://www.genengnews.com/news/gene-responsible-for-cellular-aging-in-human-cells-identified/

Source: Fight Aging!




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Linux 101: How to copy files and directories from the command line

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Jack Wallen continues his Linux 101 series, with an introduction on how to copy files and directories from the command line.

Are you new to Linux? If so, you’ve probably found the command line can be a bit intimidating. Don’t worry–it is for everyone at the beginning. That’s why I’m here to guide you through the process, and today I’m going to show you how to copy files and folders from the command line. 

Why would you need to copy files and folders this way? You might find yourself on a GUI-less Linux server and need to make a backup of a configuration file or copy a data directory. 

Trust me, at some point you’re going to need to be able to do this. Let’s find out how. 

SEE: Linux: The 7 best distributions for new users (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

First we’ll copy a file. Let’s say you’re about to make changes to the Samba configuration file, smb.conf and you want a backup copy just in case something goes wrong. To copy that file, use the cp command to copy the source to the destination like so:

 cp /etc/samba/smb.conf /etc/samba/smb.conf.bak

You’ve probably already encountered your first problem. Because the smb.conf file is in /etc/, you’ll need to use sudo privileges to make the copy. So the correct command is: 

sudo cp /etc/samba/smb.conf /etc/samba/smb.conf.bak 

In this example, smb.conf is our source and smb.conf.bak is our destination. You might want to preserve the file attributes (such as directory and file mode, ownership, and timestamps) during the copy. For that we use the -a option as in: 

sudo cp -a /etc/samba/smb.conf /etc/samba/smb.conf.bak

Copying a directory is done in the same way, only you use the -R option, for recursive. Let’s say you want to make a backup of the entire /etc/samba directory and you want to copy it to your home directory. That command would be: 

sudo cp -R /etc/samba ~/samba.bak

To preserve the attributes, while copying the directory, the command would be:

sudo cp -aR /etc/samba ~/samba.bak

And that’s all there is to it. You’ve just copied your first files and directories from the Linux command line. Now, go out and celebrate this victory, you’ve earned it.

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‘Junk DNA’ plays a key role in regulating circadian clocks

Drosophila circadian rhythm

If you’ve ever had a bad case of jet lag, you know how a disruption to your body’s circadian rhythm makes it difficult to function. Molecular circadian “clocks” exist in cells throughout the body, governing more than just sleep and wake cycles — they are crucial to many aspects of human health. For more than a decade, researchers have been trying to figure out what makes them tick, in search of new insights into diseases like Alzheimer’s, cancer and diabetes.

Until now, that research has focused on what is known as clock genes, which encode proteins that drive oscillating cycles of gene expression affecting physiology and behavior. But research just published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences reveals the discovery of a new cog in the circadian clock — a genome-wide regulatory layer made up of small chains of non-coding nucleotides known as micro RNAS (miRNAs).

Junk DNA plays a key role in regulating circadian clocks

Drosophila ciacadian rhythm. Credit: Chhandama via Wikimedia Commons, CC-BY-SA-4.0

“We’ve seen how the function of these clock genes are really important in many different diseases,” said Steve Kay, PhD, Provost Professor of neurology, biomedical engineering and quantitative computational biology at the Keck School of Medicine of USC. “But what we were blind to was a whole different funky kind of genes network that also is important for circadian regulation and this is the whole crazy world of what we call non-coding microRNA.”

‘Junk DNA’ proves to be a valuable tool in circadian rhythms

Formerly thought to be “junk DNA,” miRNAs are now known to affect gene expression by preventing messenger RNA from making proteins. Past research has indicated miRNAs may have a role in the function of circadian clocks but determining which of the hundreds of miRNAs in the genome might be involved remained a problem.

Kay and his team, led by Lili Zhou, a research associate in the Keck School’s Department of Neurology, turned to the Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation (GNF) in San Diego, which has created robots capable of high throughput experiments. Working with scientists at the institute, Zhou developed a high throughput screen for a robot to test the close to 1000 miRNAs by individually transferring them into cells the team had engineered to glow on and off, based on the cell’s 24-hour circadian clock cycle.

“The collaboration with GNF made it possible for us to conduct the first cell-based, genome-wide screening approach to systematically identify which of the hundreds of miRNAs might be the ones modulating circadian rhythms,” said Zhou.

“Much to our surprise,” said Kay, “we discovered about 110 to 120 miRNAs that do this.”

With the help of Caitlyn Miller, a biochemistry undergraduate from USC Dornsife, researchers then verified the impact on circadian rhythms by inactivating certain miRNAs identified by the screen in their line of glowing cells. Knocking out the miRNAs had the opposite effect on the cells’ circadian rhythm as adding them to the cells.

Physiologic and behavioral impacts  of miRNAs

Researchers also focused on the physiologic and behavioral impacts of miRNAs. They analyzed the behavior of mice with a particular cluster of miRNAs inactivated – miR 183/96/182 – and saw that inactivating the cluster interfered with their wheel-running behavior in the dark compared with control mice. They then examined the impact of the miRNA cluster on brain, retina and lung tissue, and found that inactivating the cluster affected circadian rhythms in a different way in each tissue type – suggesting that the way the miRNAs regulate the circadian clock is tissue specific.

Understanding the impact of miRNAs on the circadian clock in individual tissue could reveal new ways of treating or preventing specific diseases.

“In the brain we’re interested in connecting the clock to diseases like Alzheimer’s, in the lung we’re interested in connecting the clock to diseases like asthma,” said Kay. “The next step I think for us to model disease states in animals and in cells and look at how these microRNAs are functioning in those disease states.”

Source: USC




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Samsung Galaxy F62, Samsung Galaxy M02 Spotted on India Support Page; Hints at Imminent Launch

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Samsung Galaxy F62 and Samsung Galaxy M02 have leaked in the past on several occasions, and now the model numbers associated with these phones have been spotted on Samsung’s official support page in India as well. This indicates that both the phones’ launches could be inching closer and Samsung is gearing up to introduce them in the Indian market. Samsung Galaxy F62 is also reported to be called the Samsung Galaxy E62. In some markets, this phone may likely be also called the Samsung Galaxy M62.

MySmartPrice spotted two model numbers – SM-E625F/DS and SM-M022G/DS – on the Samsung India support page. The support page doesn’t offer any details about the phone, and it doesn’t even reveal the commercial name of the phone, but the SM-E625F/DS model number is largely associated with Samsung Galaxy F62, or Samsung Galaxy E62, in the past. Likewise, the SM-M022G/DS is associated with the anticipated Samsung Galaxy M02 handset.

Samsung introduced the Galaxy M02s in the Indian market earlier this month, but the Galaxy M02 still remains in the rumour mill. As per a Geekbench listing, Samsung Galaxy M02 may run on Android 10 and come with 3GB of RAM. The smartphone could also come with the Qualcomm Snapdragon SoC that is clocked at 1.8GHz.

The rumoured Samsung Galaxy F62 has also leaked in images, hinting at a square shaped module on the back. The phone has also been spotted on BIS website and an earlier report also claims that the production of the rumoured Samsung Galaxy F62 has begun at the company’s Greater Noida facility in the Delhi-NCR region. The Galaxy F62 could be one of the slimmest phones from Samsung and it is expected to launch in the first quarter of 2021. Specifications leaked in the past include Exynos 9825 SoC, have 6GB of RAM and Android 11.


Is this the end of the Samsung Galaxy Note series as we know it? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below.

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