Scientific Letter - June 2011

Scientific letter - Bonjour Southeast

Scientific letter - Bonjour Southeast

June 2011

Southeast France Events To Know Picture


-- width='35' height='25' />Edito


Dear Friends,

Welcome to the second edition of our scientific letter!

This month, two Nobel Prize awardees whom one is french will be giving seminars in Atlanta!

>>Françoise Barré-Sinoussi, french researcher, who received the Nobel Prize in Medicine or Physiology in 2008 will be giving a talk at Emory University in relation with the discovery of the AIDS virus.

>>Andrew Fire has received the Nobel Prize in Medecine or Physiology in 2006 for his discovery of RNA interference and gene silencing by double-stranded RNA and will be giving a talk at Georgia Tech.
You will find more details concerning these events below.

Do not forget that you can subscribe to our newsletter in order to receive it directly in your mailbox! Do not hesitate to send us your feedback.
We hope you’ll find this interesting, enjoy!

Johanna Ferrand, Deputy Scientific Attaché in Life Sciences


-- width='35' height='25' />Sciences in the Southeast USA


Scientific news froms the Southeast USA

- Fire Ants Surf Floods on Rafts of Their Own Bodies also available in French, Georgia Tech, 04/25/2011. GIF GIF
Fire ants are depressingly resilient. Colonies of the aggressive, stinging insects can withstand floods, fires, and pesticides. Now, researchers have revealed the mechanisms behind one of the bug’s neatest survival tricks: rafts composed of thousands of ants linked together, which repel water and sometimes float for months.
>> Learn more

- When HIV Doesn’t Make You Sick- New Research Shows a Handful of Humans with HIV Can Cope Similarly to AIDS-Resistant Monkeys, Emory University (GA), 05/19/2011. GIF
For a few people, HIV appears to be just another virus. These rare individuals, called viremic nonprogressors (VNPs), can tolerate high levels of HIV in the body without the immune system going into overdrive. Similarly, some types of Old World monkeys, such as sooty mangabeys, have the ability to withstand infection by SIV, the cousin of HIV, and not end up with crippled immune systems.
>> Learn more

- Defect in graphene may present bouquet of possibilities, Georgia Institute of Technology (GA), 05/25/2011. GIF
A class of decorative, flower-like defects in the nanomaterial graphene could have potentially important effects on the material’s already unique electrical and mechanical properties. In a new paper, the team for the first time describes a family of seven defects that could occur naturally or be induced to occur in graphene, one of which already has been observed.
>> Learn more

- Duke-NUS Researchers Identify New Cell that Attacks Dengue Virus, Duke University and NUS, 05/17/2011. GIF
Mast cells, which help the body respond to bacteria and pathogens, also apparently sound the alarm around viruses delivered by a mosquito bite.
>> Learn more

- La destruction projetée du virus de la variole créée la controverse, USA, 05/02/2011. GIF
En mai 2011, se tiendra une réunion des délégués de l’Organisation Mondiale de la Santé (OMS) afin de statuer sur la destruction ou la conservation du virus de la variole qui a ravagé l’humanité pendant près de trois millénaires.
>> Learn more

- Des résultats encourageants pour les industries biotechnologiques de Floride, USA, 05/20/2011. GIF
Alors que l’industrie biotechnologique est en baisse dans les Etats-Unis, le nombre de sociétés de biotechnologies s’est accru de 21% depuis 2008 en Floride, tout comme les investissements qui sont eux aussi à la hausse.
>> Learn more

- Francoise Barre-Sinoussi, laureate of the Nobel Prize in Medicine 2008, to visit Atlanta June 16 and 17, 2011 , also available in French, Atlanta, 06/16-17/2011. GIF
At the invitation of the Yerkes National Primate Research Center, Emory Center for AIDS Research and Emory Vaccine Center, the French researcher Francoise Barre-Sinoussi, co-winner of the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 2008 for the discovery of the AIDS virus, will be in Atlanta June 16 and 17, 2011.
>> Learn more


-- width='35' height='25' />Sciences in France


Scientific news from France

- Insects with 3 pairs of wings also available in French, CNRS, 05/04/2011. GIF GIF
In 250 million years of insect evolution, the appearance of new wings is unprecedented. Transformations and losses of wings, yes, but additions, never. A team has shattered this belief by providing proof that the exuberant helmet of Membracidae, a group of insects related to cicadas, is in fact a third pair of profoundly modified wings.
>> Learn more

- Five New Genetic Susceptibility Factors Identified for Alzheimer’s Disease, also available in French, eTech France, 05/17/2011. GIF GIF
The number of patients with Alzheimer’s disease is rising in France and worldwide due to humans’ increased life span. European researchers have decided to pool their skills and expertise to combat the disease that is now the leading cause of memory and intellectual function disorders in the elderly.
>> Learn more

- The first habitable exoplanet : a new candidate revealed by climate scientists, also available in French, CNRS/UPMC/ENS/Ecole Polytechnique, 05/16/2011. GIF GIF
The planetary system around the red dwarf Gliese 581, one of the closest stars to the Sun in the galaxy, has been the subject of several studies aiming to detect the first potentially habitable exoplanet. Two candidates have already been discarded, but a third planet, Gliese 581d, can be considered the first confirmed exoplanet that could support Earth-like life.
>> Learn more

- Droplets for detecting tumoral DNA, also available in French, CNRS, Inserm, Paris Descartes and Strasbourg universities, 05/20/2011. GIF GIF
The mantle of Mars is possibly cooling by 30-40°C every billion years. Based on satellite observations of the composition of the planet’s volcanic rocks, researchers reached this conclusion after reconstructing for the first time the thermal evolution of the planet over the past 4 billion years.
>> Learn more

- The rejection of a graft filmed in 3-D at the cellular level presented by Philippe Bousso, Immunologist, also available in French, Inserm, Pasteur Institute, 05/16/2011. GIF GIF
Using a novel, in vivo imaging technique which allows in-depth real-time exploration of immunity mechanisms on the cellular level in animals, researchers from Inserm and Institut Pasteur have been able to visualize the graft rejection process for the first time. The observation of this "cellular choreography" has demonstrated the existence of a mechanism which contributes to the immune reaction responsible for rejection.
>> Learn more


-- width='35' height='25' />Events


Georgia Institute of Technology (Atlanta)
- June, 2nd, 11am-12pm, Andrew Fire
’Sequence-based tracking of biological responses to foreign information’
- June, 14th, 8.30-9.30am, Brian Hammer
’Small RNA Regulation of the Quorum Sensing Response in the Bacterial Pathogen Vibrio Cholerae’

Emory University (Atlanta)
- June, 16th, 6pm, Françoise Barré-Sinoussi
’From the Discovery of HIV to the End of AIDS:
A Discussion of Scientific Questions Past, Present, and Future’

- June, 23rd, 7am-8am, Felix Fernandez
’Management of Early Stage Lung Cancer in High Risk Patients’

Georgia State University (Atlanta)
- June, 17th, 9.45am, Molecular Basis of Disease 2011 Research Day
’Molecular Basis of Disease 2011 Research Day’

North Carolina

Duke University (Durham)
- June, 2nd, 12:30-1:30pm, Jennifer Lippincott-Schwartz
’Breakthroughs in imaging using photo-activatable fluorescent protein technology’

>> More details concerning these events and more events following this link.


-- width='35' height='25' />Good to Know


Two Winners of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine will be giving seminars in Atlanta in June

Dr. Andrew Fire, Winner of the 2006 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine and Professor in the Departments of Pathology and Genetics at Stanford University School of Medicine will give a talk called “Sequence-based tracking of biological responses to foreign information". His seminar will be held on Thursday, June 2, 2011 from 11:00am to 12:00pm at Georgia Tech in the Marcus Nanotechnology Building, Room 1116. A reception honoring Dr. Fire will be held in the gallery immediately following the seminar.

Pr. Françoise Barré-Sinoussi, Winner of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, co-Chair of the United Nations Panel on AIDS, Director of the Retroviral Infections Regulation Unit at the
Pasteur Institute, and incoming President of the International AIDS Society will give a talk called “From the Discovery of HIV to the End of AIDS: A Discussion of Scientific Questions Past, Present, and Future". Her seminar will be held on Thursday, June 16, 2011 from 6:30pm to 7:45pm at Emory University in the Woodruff Health Science Center Administration Building, Plaza and Auditorium (1440 Clifton Rd). A reception honoring Pr. Barré-Sinoussi will be held before (6:00pm) and after (7:45pm) the seminar.

Where are the scientific competitiveness clusters in France?

A competitiveness cluster is:
- A joint theme-based initiative for a given geographic area: it is an initiative that brings together companies, research centers and educational institutions in order to develop synergies and cooperative efforts. Other cluster partners may include local and national authorities and services catering to cluster members.
- A chance to become a leader: clusters use synergies and innovative joint projects to give their member companies a chance to be national and international leaders in their fields.

In France, there is many scientific competitiveness clusters: Lyonbiopôle, Aerospace Valley, Medicen Paris Region, Alsace Biovalley...
You can subscribe to the english newsletter of the competitiveness clusters. Each competitiveness cluster has its own newsletter, most of the time, in french.
>>Learn more: the competitiveness clusters website GIF
>>Learn more: the competitiveness clusters brochure GIF

26 international talented researchers to be recruited in the Paris Region

Research Based University Chairs of Excellence Universities of Paris is looking for 26 international talented researchers to be recruited in the Paris Region. The fellows (juniors or seniors) will be employed for a 2-year long period by one of the 5 host organisations: Université Paris-Sud 11, Université de Versailles-Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, Université d’Evry-val-d’Essonne, Ecole Centrale Paris, Ecole Normale Supérieure de Cachan. Each fellow will work in the host laboratoy he/she has chosen (it is possible to apply for the same research project to different host laboratories). The closing date of the call is June 30, 2011.
>>Learn more


-- width='35' height='25' />Picture of the Month


Drops of dried blood taken from a healthy individual (left) and an anemic patient (right)

© CNRS Photothèque, David Brutin / Benjamin Sobac, UMR6595 - Institut universitaire des systèmes thermiques industriels - Marseille, France

Drops of dried human blood, taken from a healthy individual (left) and an anemic patient (right) that is to say, suffering from a lack of hemoglobin. Drying revealed regular patterns that vary only according to the composition of blood.
On the right picture, the drop of dried blood does not show large cracks visible on the drop of dried blood taken from the healthy individual.
They are a source of information on the health of the individual. Researchers are trying to develop a new method of diagnosing diseases affecting blood composition, based on observation of samples of dried blood. They will establish the fingerprint characteristic of a large range of diseases and build a database for analyzing these patterns reliably. This technique would avoid multiple and expensive tests that are currently used.

D. Brutin; B. Soba ; B. Loquet and J.Sampol, "Pattern formation in drying drops of blood", Journal of Fluid Mechanics, vol 667, 2011, p 85-95.

Edited by Johanna Ferrand, Deputy Scientific Attaché in Life Sciences, designed by Clémentine Bernon, Deputy Cultural Attaché

(c) Consulate General of France in Atlanta

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Last modified on 01/06/2011

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