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    Press Releases

    Babies are able to quickly and seemingly effortlessly acquire a skill as complex as language. They already develop basic skills for this in the first six months of life.

    In the process of developing language, the melody patterns that emerge in infants' vocalisations are a very important first step. A new study has shown that the complexity of these patterns rapidly increases in the first months.

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    With two additional genes for the enzyme dioxygenase and the light-controlled anion channel ACR1, the tobacco plant can channel salt ions across the cell membrane when exposed to green light. The success can be seen in the experiment: While pollen tubes normally grow in the direction of the egg cell for fertilization, in genetically modified cells they change the direction of growth depending on the exposure to light.

    Optogenetics can be used to activate and study cells in a targeted manner using light. Scientists at the University of Würzburg have now succeeded in transferring this technique to plants.

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    The JMU's central building.

    The University of Würzburg is starting the 2021 summer semester predominantly digitally with online teaching and on-site internships. Enrolment for degree programmes with unrestricted admission is possible from 15 February until the start of the semester.

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    Survival curve of the TH-MYCN mouse model during long-term treatment with Aurora-A inhibitor (purple), ATR inhibitor (blue) or the combination of both agents (red). It is clearly visible that the combination therapy prolongs survival time.

    With two commercially available inhibitors, the cell cycle of the cancer cells in the childhood tumour neuroblastoma can be disrupted at a key point causing tumour cell death.

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    Dr. Donghai Li at his experiment on coherent 2D microscopy.

    Two-dimensional materials hold out hope for many technical applications. An international research team now has determined for the first time how strongly 2D materials vibrate when electronically excited with light.

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    [Translate to Englisch:]

    The upcoming examinations at the University of Würzburg will most likely take place as scheduled with strict protection and hygiene measures. In addition, digital examination offerings will be implemented, and individual solutions will be offered.

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    Women meditating in front of a full moon.

    Does the moon affect women's menstrual cycles? This question has been controversial for a long time. A new study by chronobiologists from Würzburg now suggest that such an influence does exist. It's complicated, though.

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    Normal and malformed leaves oft the Australian pitcher plant.

    Climate change may challenge organismal responses through not only extreme cues. An uncommon combination of benign cues – warm and short days – can also trigger reactions such as misregulations of leaves.

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    The Venus flytrap has a unique arrangement of its vascular tissue (centre). This network enables the plant to process fast stimuli, similar to the nervous system of animals. Now it has been possible to investigate these stimuli without contact using novel magnetic field detectors (right).

    The carnivorous Venus flytrap can generate magnetic fields that are almost as strong as those in humans. Researchers from Mainz and Würzburg have demonstrated this with a new, non-invasive measuring technique.

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    Fins of the Australian lungfish

    The Australian lungfish replaces the Mexican axolotl as holding the record for the "largest genome in the animal kingdom". Its genome shows the evolutionary innovations that made living on land possible.

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    Different people in different jobs

    What are citizens' attitudes towards the state? How does this influence their willingness to pay taxes? An interdisciplinary research team, funded with 1.5 million euros, is investigating these questions.

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    18 host proteins play an important role during SARS-CoV-2 infection – two of them are particularly interesting. They could open up new ways to treat infections with SARS-CoV-2 and other RNA viruses. Graphics: SCIGRAPHIX / S. Westermann

    Scientists from Würzburg and the US have charted the first global atlas of direct interactions between SARS-CoV-2 RNA and human host cells. This may provide a starting point for novel treatments.

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    The combination of different bioinformatics methods has brought new small proteins from salmonella to light.

    Only one small protein needs to be missing and salmonellae are no longer infectious. This was discovered in a study in which the pathogens were re-analysed using bioinformatics.

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