With the parasite Neospora caninum contributing to great amounts of cattle deaths worldwide it has become an important target for control. N. caninum infected cattle appear symptom free until pregnancy, at which point the dormant N. caninum reverts to an actively dividing tachyzoite stage, the mechanism of this reactivation remains unknown. It is likely non-homologous or ‘orphan’ genes of N. caninum may be responsible. With no direct means to both store and search potentially involved genes with the flexibility required, both a website and MySQL database were created to support this investigation. The website, ApiBLAST (ApiBLAST.vetsci.co.uk), is an efficient tool to quickly locate, filter and analyse orphan genes. The database stores information on homology, derived from e-values determined by BLAST and subcellular localisation & structure determined by a number of tools maintained by the CBSA, including SignalP, TargetP and TMHMM. Twelve candidate genes were isolated from over 15,000, their functions not currently fully understood and thus possibly of interest for future investigation. ApiBLAST has great potential and flexibility as a bioinformatics tool, which this study has proven by the successful identification of the twelve candidate genes.
The body consists of many types of specialised cells, from gametes to blood cells, each different cell type having a specific function. In contrast to specialised cells are unspecialised cells, known as stem cells. Because of the unique abilities of stem cells as opposed to a typical somatic cell, they are currently the target of ongoing research. Multiple areas of research are looking into how stem cells can offer new ways of treating disease, such as diabetes or heart disease – a field of medicine known as cell-based therapy or regenerative medicine.
Insulin resistance is a subnormal biological response of the body to insulin, i.e. a reduced reduced response to the presence of insulin. As a result insulin becomes less effective at reducing blood sugar, increased blood sugar levels can have an adverse impact on health.
Viruses are small particles which infect living cells; this makes them obligate intracellular parasites. They have no reproductive mechanisms of their own so instead must use host cells to replicate. There are two main threats for a virus; the host’s immunity and the death of the host. Both of which will typically prevent the [...]
The complement system or complement cascade as it is also known is a complex system of multiple proteins involved in inflammation and immunological response. The components of the complement system can be found throughout the body in fluids, providing the body with a systemic means of protection. Antibodies depend on complement for many of [...]
Chronic inflammation is inflammation which has been of prolonged duration. It is the simultaneous occurrence of active inflammation, tissue destruction and attempts at repair.
Chronic inflammation can either follow on from acute inflammation or it can begin insidiously (a lack of symptoms, the patient is unaware of the onset of the disease with a [...]
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