Aphids and their favorite colors

Aphids are one of the least welcome garden visitors. These small insects can cause all the more damage in agriculture. But how do they actually choose their host plants? What are the basic mechanisms behind this? Researchers from the Universities of Bonn and Kassel now present two novel models that can be used to analyze aphid color vision and thus how the animals respond to plants. This opens up new possibilities for future research on this topic - but may also be relevant for agricultural applications. The study has been published in the journal Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B.

New diagnostic option for rare eye disease

An estimated five to ten percent of blindness worldwide is caused by the rare inflammatory eye disease uveitis. Posterior uveitis in particular is often associated with severe disease progression and the need for immunosuppressive therapy. In posterior uveitis, inflammation occurs in the retina and in the underlying choroid that supplies it with nutrients. Researchers at the Ophthalmology Department at the University of Bonn have tested color-coded fundus autofluorescence as a supportive novel diagnostic method. Fluorescence of the retina can be used to infer the uveitis subtype. This is an essential prerequisite for accurate diagnosis and treatment of the disease. The results have now been published in Nature Scientific Reports.

Aimee van Wynsberghe admitted to academy

The Academy of Sciences and Literature has admitted six new members. Among them is Humboldt Professor Aimee van Wynsberghe. The AI ethicist from the University of Bonn has become a full member of the Humanities and Social Sciences Class.

Appetite change in depression

Major depressive disorders are characterized by a significant health burden, including changes in appetite and body weight. Identifying biomarkers such as changes in brain function to treat depression is difficult due to the varying symptomatology of affected individuals. However, a research team - led by Prof. Dr. Nils Kroemer of the University Hospital Tübingen as well as the University Hospital Bonn (UKB) and the University of Bonn investigated whether conclusions can be drawn about the direction of appetite changes - increase or decrease - based on the functional architecture of the reward system in the brain. The results are now published in the journal JAMA Psychiatry.

Therapeutic drug renders cancer cell weapon harmless

Many tumor cells mist themselves with a protective perfume that disables the immune system. But a drug already approved for other purposes can apparently render this weapon harmless. This is shown in a study by the University of Bonn and the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, which has now appeared in the Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer. The researchers now want to further optimize the compound. In the medium term, this could pave the way for new anti-cancer drugs.

DNA guardians out of control

Our own immune system can become the enemy when mechanisms that are actually protective get out of control. In ANCA-associated vasculitis, excessive inflammatory reactions lead to pulmonary hemorrhages that can be fatal if left untreated. Researchers at the University of Bonn, together with colleagues from Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland and England, have deciphered a mechanism in mice and patients that leads to the severe disease. The results are now published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine.

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