- Number 350 |
- November 14, 2011
DOE's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, working with Loyola University, has won a $3.5 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to help develop a new anthrax vaccine. The grant is the first major NIH-funded biodefense grant focused on LLNL's nanolipoprotein technology.
Nanolipoprotein (NLP) technology is a potential breakthrough in vaccine development. Today, many vaccines are based on a single protein derived from a specific pathogen (bacterial, viral, fungal). The idea is that the body "sees" the protein as foreign and mounts an immune response to kill the invader, which keeps the body free from disease.
When exposed to sunlight, atmospheric aerosols change dramatically, according to scientists at DOE’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and the University of California, Irvine. Using resources at EMSL, the team found that the light dices the aerosols’ organic molecules into small acidic bits. The resulting molecules make it easier for clouds to form. Another finding was that the sunlight bleaches the brown particles white, reducing the amount of heat the particles absorb.
In a first-of-its-kind tension wood study, researchers at DOE’s BioEnergy Science Center at Oak Ridge National Laboratory are utilizing a comprehensive suite of techniques to systematically characterize tension wood, which forms naturally in hardwood trees in response to bending stress.
Tiny particles are making a big difference in the world of cancer therapy. And physicists at DOE's SLAC National Accelerator Facility—experts in particle transport—are using computer simulations to make those therapies safer.
Software developer Joseph Perl and his colleagues are turning the simulation toolkit Geant4 into a powerful application for medical physicists. Originally designed to track subatomic particles in high-energy physics experiments, Geant4 can also map proton paths through patients' bodies during radiation treatment.