British and Serbian scientists look into freezing genes


Novi Sad/London - EU-funded researchers have identified the genes that allow insects called Arctic springtails to survive temperatures as low as -14°C. 'This is the first in-depth molecular study on the underlying cold survival mechanisms in this species,' commented Melody Clark of the British Antarctic Survey, the lead author of the article. 'Such information is not only of interest to ecologists, but also to the medical field of cryobiology.'
Many species of springtail can survive low temperatures; most achieve this by using the 'freeze avoidance' technique, and some use freeze tolerance. However, the Arctic springtail, Megaphorura arctica, uses a third, rarer technique known as cryoprotective dehydration. As temperatures fall, these tiny creatures dehydrate themselves, taking on the appearance of shrivelled husks in the process. When the weather becomes more clement, the insects rehydrate themselves and resume their normal activities.
The study, published in the journal BMC Genomics (Vol. 10, 2009) was supported in part by the SLEEPING BEAUTY ('Dormancy of cells and organisms-strategies for survival and preservation') project, which is funded under the 'New and Emerging Science and Technology' (NEST) activity area of the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6).
In this study, researchers from the British Antarctic Survey and the University of Novi Sad in Serbia teamed up to identify the genes controlling the processes of dehydration and rehydration. Their analyses revealed that a wide range of genes become active as temperatures fall, including genes controlling the production of a natural antifreeze called trehalose as well as genes involved in tissue and cell remodelling.
When temperatures rise and the springtail recovers, genes involved in energy production, tissue repair and cell division are activated. The findings could have important implications for those working on techniques for preserving cells and tissues at low temperatures for long periods, for example in biobanks.
According to Europe's biobanking project BBMRI (Biobanking and Biomolecular Resources Research Infrastructure), there are currently 300,000+ samples of whole blood, 1.7m of serum, 1.1m of plasma, 8m of FFPE tissue, and 0.5m cryo-conserved samples stored in the 300 EU biobanks.



London – The European Medicines Agency has recalled all batches of the cancer drugs Busilvex, Velcade and Vidaza manufactured at Boehringer Ingelheim’s Ben Venue Laboratories facility in Bedford, Ohio, from the European market....



London – GlaxoSmithKline goes west. The British pharmaceutical company launched the $50-million GSK Canada Life Sciences Innovation Fund that will invest in “early-stage breakthrough research” in health care life science in...



Heidelberg/Cambridge/London– A team of researchers from GlaxoSmithKline, the biotech company Cellzome and from Universities Cambridge, Ulm and Amsterdam have found a promising treatment for mixed lineage (MLL-fusion) leukaemia...



Amersham – GE Healthcare intends to remain a major force in cancer therapy. Based in London, the health business of the US technology giant announced it will be reserving €730m of its total R&D budget over the next five years for...



Wolverhampton – One of the challenges for manufacturers of probiotic foods is getting large enough numbers of the bacteria into the intestines; most perish under the strongly acidic conditions in the stomach. Scientists from the...



Washington – British Shire plc gained more than 10% in late August on the London Stock Exchange after the US FDA approved Firazyr (icatibant) for acute attacks of hereditary angioedema. The compound was developed by Berlin-based...



London – The first clinical trial using human embryonic stem cells will be carried out at the Moorfields Eye hospital in London. Doctors will inject retinal cells into the eyes of 12 patients with Stargardt‘s macular dystrophy, a...



Amersham – GE Healthcare intends to stay a major force in cancer. The health business of the US-technological company, which is based in London, announced to reserve €730m of its total R&D budget over the next five years for...



Cambridge - A new biotech spin off from the University of Cambridge launched with €6.8m venture capital. Newco Mission Therapeutics Ltd. plans to develop cancer drugs targeting enzymes in ubiquitin pathways that control cellular...

Displaying results 21 to 30 out of 396

< Previous 21-30 Next >

© 2007-2015 BIOCOM


All videos

Product of the week



LentiKat’s offers an unusual investment opportunity

LentiKat’s owns, manufactures and distributes a patented immobilization into lentil-shaped Lentikats Biocatalysts. The unique lentil-like shape of the Lentikats Biocatalyst ensures unlimited diffusion of substrate(s) into any part of the matrix, while still retaining a convenient size for easy separation from the reaction medium. They find application in the Pharma & Food industry (including bio-based chemicals), Wastewater treatment as well as Biofuels. more...


All Events



BioVaria 2015

Job Advert

Sales Manager

celares GmbH is a Berlin based drug delivery company focused on chemical modifications of biological drugs. We offer customized development services for international pharma and biopharma companies and have manufacturing capabilities for key starting materials used for the preparation of pharmaceutical drugs. For the intensification of our own sales activities we are looking for a sales manager. more...

Stock list

All quotes


  • WILEX3.59 EUR5.59%
  • BASILEA118.10 CHF3.14%
  • PAION2.58 EUR2.79%


  • BIOTEST79.20 EUR-19.51%
  • CYTOS1.01 CHF-8.18%
  • FORMYCON28.00 EUR-6.01%


  • CO.DON3.15 EUR22.1%
  • WILEX3.59 EUR21.3%
  • FORMYCON28.00 EUR21.0%


  • CYTOS1.01 CHF-27.9%
  • BIOTEST79.20 EUR-18.1%
  • THERAMETRICS0.07 CHF-12.5%


  • SANTHERA98.85 CHF2460.9%
  • CYTOS1.01 CHF676.9%
  • WILEX3.59 EUR337.8%


  • MOLOGEN5.07 EUR-54.8%
  • THERAMETRICS0.07 CHF-30.0%
  • BIOFRONTERA2.41 EUR-28.1%

No liability assumed, Date: 25.04.2015

Current issue

All issues