Today at Berkeley Lab

Supercomputers Help ID New Drug Leads to Fight Heart Disease

Using a unique computational approach to rapidly sample, in millisecond time intervals, proteins in their natural state of gyrating, bobbing, and weaving, a research team from UC San Diego and Monash University in Australia (using resources at NERSC) has identified promising drug leads that may selectively combat heart disease, from arrhythmias to cardiac failure. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

Glowing Crystals Can Detect, Cleanse Contaminated Drinking Water

Motivated by public hazards associated with contaminated sources of drinking water, a team of scientists has successfully developed and tested tiny, glowing crystals that can detect and trap heavy-metal toxins like mercury and lead. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

Genes, Early Environment Sculpt the Gut Microbiome

Scientists from Berkeley Lab and PNNL found that genes and early environment play big roles in shaping the gut microbiome. The microbes retained a clear “signature” formed where the mice were first raised, and the characteristics carried over to the next generation. The findings could potentially be used to develop designer diets optimized to an individual’s microbiome. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

Engineering a More Efficient System for Harnessing Carbon Dioxide

A team from the Max-Planck-Institute, using expertise from the Joint Genome Institute, has reverse engineered a biosynthetic pathway for more effective carbon fixation. This novel pathway is based on a new CO2-fixing enzyme that is nearly 20 times faster than the most prevalent enzyme in nature responsible for capturing CO2 in plants by using sunlight as energy. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

Managing Tsunami of Data Generated by Global Brain Initiative

Since the launch of the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies Initiative, researchers have developed tools to explore the brain’s processes. But without a strategy to analyze, manage, and understand the data generated by these new technologies, advancements will be limited. The Lab’s Kristofer Bouchard assembled a team to help tackle this issue. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

Scientists Trace ‘Poisoning’ in Chemical Reactions to the Atomic Scale

A combination of experiments, including X-ray studies at Berkeley Lab, revealed new details about pesky deposits that can stop chemical reactions vital to fuel production and other processes. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

ALS Used to Analyze Formation of Toxic Furans During Combustion

Researchers predicted and observed for the first time the formation and growth of furans and other oxygenated hydrocarbons produced during combustion. These compounds can have a wide range of detrimental effects on human health, air quality, and regional and global climate. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

X-Rays Capture Unprecedented Images of Photosynthesis in Action

An international team of scientists is providing new insight into the process by which plants use light to split water and create oxygen. In experiments led by Berkeley Lab scientists, ultrafast X-ray lasers were able to capture atomic-scale images of a protein complex found in plants, algae, and cyanobacteria at room temperature. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

New Study on Metastability Clears Path for Next-Generation Materials

Lab researchers have published a new study in Science Advances that, for the first time, explicitly quantifies the thermodynamic scale of metastability for almost 30,000 known materials. This paves the way for designing and making promising next-generation materials for use in everything from semiconductors to pharmaceuticals to steels. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.

A Look Inside the Barrel of a Galaxy-Scanning Instrument

A large, barrel-shaped lens-holding device is taking shape for the Berkeley Lab-led Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument project. Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory collaborators are building and assembling this device—which will be placed on the Mayall 4-meter telescope near Tucson, Ariz.—to exacting specifications. More>

You can leave a comment. View the Comment Policy.