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    Artistic representation of human stomach cells infected with Helicobacter pylori, showing the special Hummingbird cell shape induced by the bacterium.

    The most important pathogenicity factors of the gastric pathogen Helicobacter pylori are centrally regulated by a small RNA molecule, NikS. And this was not the only surprise that NikS provided.

    Photo of a Venus flytrap with an insect inside.

    The carnivorous Venus flytrap snaps shut when a prey touches it twice within 30 seconds. In the journal Nature Plants researchers report on how this plant's short-term memory and counting system works.

    Two point mutations are responsible for the fact that arginine is found in the NFATc1 protein instead of the amino acid lysine. This exchange prevents sumoylation and makes the affected T cells less aggressive.

    Minor changes in immune cells can significantly affect the immune response, scientists of the University of Würzburg have now discovered. Their findings could be relevant for stem cell therapy.

    Scientists from Würzburg are investigating immune cells in different tissues, here for example ILC2s (red) or T-cells (blue) in the lung (right) or in the mucosa of the small intestine (left).

    Specialized immune cells settle permanently in tissues of the body and build “local task forces”. Wuerzburger scientists have recently discovered, how these cells can regenerate themselves and can adapt to the new environment.


    A cancer shredder

    To fight cancer by a newly developed substance shredding carcinogenic aurora proteins: This is the aim of a new study by scientists at universities in Würzburg and Frankfurt.

    Researchers at the universities of Würzburg and Frankfurt have developed a new compound for treating cancer. It destroys a protein that triggers its development.

    Schematic representation of the function of BATF3. In the upper half you can see the physiological function and the consequences if this factor is missing (knockout). The lower half shows the consequences in case of an unnaturally increased expression with the resulting therapeutic applicability.

    The immune system will memorize the pathogen after an infection and can therefore react promptly after reinfection with the same pathogen. Now, scientists at the University of Würzburg have deciphered new details of this process.

    Burned eucalypt forest in Australia. Avoiding overall post-disturbance logging after such major disturbances can help to maintain biodiversity.

    Please do not disturb: After forest fires, bark beetle infestations and other damage, the affected forests should not be cleared. Researchers report this in the journal Nature Communications.

    Professor Michael Baumann and Professor Hermann Einsele.

    A new site of the German National Center for Tumour Diseases will be established in Bavaria. It will be coordinated from Würzburg; Erlangen, Regensburg and Augsburg are also involved.

    Boron can be used to convert nitrogen to ammonium.

    The industrial conversion of nitrogen to ammonium provides fertiliser for agriculture. Würzburg chemists have now achieved this conversion at room temperature and low pressure using only light elements.

    Complex evolutionary relationships: Long-term expression in one organ predisposes genes for later use in other organs.

    The long-term expression of genes in vertebrate organs predisposes these genes to be subsequently utilized in other organs during evolution. The scientists Kenji Fukushima and David D. Pollock report this finding in the journal Nature Communications.

    Portrait of astrophysicist Sara Buson

    Astrophysicist Sara Buson wants to explore "monsters of the universe" – blazars that eject particles with unimaginable energies. For this project she is receiving 1.5 million euros from the European Research Council.


    Radical bismuth

    Crispin Lichenberg

    Chemist Crispin Lichtenberg has won a EUR 1.5 million Starting Grant of the European Research Council. He wants to use the money to study the potential of novel chemical compounds.

    The Shanghai Ranking puts the University of Würzburg again among the top 300 universities in the world.

    The prestigious Shanghai Ranking puts the University of Würzburg again among the top 300 universities in the world – ranking 203rd this year. In Germany, the university has climbed to 11th place.

    To prevent pathogens (green) from entering the plant through the stomata, these pores are closed. The receptor FLS recognises the pathogen and opens the ion channel OSCA, which allows calcium to flow into the cell. The calcium activates a kinase (CPK), which then opens the anion channel SLAC. This initiates the closing of the stomata.

    Plants can defend themselves against harmful fungi and bacteria. An international research team describes in the journal "Nature" the signal chain with which they react to such dangers.