Real-time insights into the inner life of plants: New biosensor makes control hormone auxin visible in cells

The hormone auxin is of central importance for the development of plants. Scientists at the University of Bayreuth and the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology in Tübingen have now developed a novel sensor that makes the spatial distribution of auxin in the cells of living plants visible in real time. The sensor opens up completely new insights into the inner workings of plants for researchers. Moreover, the influences of changing environmental conditions on growth can now also be quickly detected. The team presents its research results in the journal Nature.

Quelle: IDW Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

Mother’s age, race, weight affect hormone concentrations in pregnancy

Hormone concentrations during early fetal development — that may affect the child’s development and increase the mother’s risk for breast and ovarian cancer years later — are significantly affected by maternal age, body mass index and race rather than lifestyle, according to a new study.

Quelle: Sciencedaily

Sulfate Helps Plants Cope With Water Scarcity

Plants absorb the mineral sulfate from groundwater. An international research team led by scientists from Heidelberg University has uncovered how sulfate controls the production of the drought stress hormone ABA in plants and thus contributes to their drought-resistance. These findings improve scientists‘ understanding of how the drought-stress signal travels from the roots to the leaves. The studies in Heidelberg were carried out at the Centre for Organismal Studies (COS). (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Exercise-induced hormone irisin triggers bone remodeling in mice

Exercise has been touted to build bone mass, but exactly how it actually accomplishes this is a matter of debate. Now, researchers show that an exercise-induced hormone activates cells that are critical for bone remodeling in mice. A study identifies a receptor for irisin, an exercise hormone, and shows that irisin impacts sclerostin in mice, a major cellular regulator of bone structure in humans. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

News About a Plant Hormone

The plant hormone jasmonic acid also performs a function that was previously unknown. It ensures that the leaf pores close when leaves are injured. For the plant, this could be an emergency signal. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Great tits detox at the expense of a lower life expectancy

Some males of great tits that faced higher energetic costs during their reproductive phase upregulated the concentration of an enzyme important for detoxifying free radicals. Together with other physiological reactions like the loss of weight and a higher level of stress hormones, harder-working birds compensated higher energetic demands in a way that had no direct consequences for their offspring or their own survival. This is what researchers of the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology have found. However, birds with a higher concentration of the enzyme had a lower overwinter survival. This seems to be the physiological key mediating the trade-off between reproduction and survival. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

How the gut ‘talks’ to brown fat

The long known gut hormone secretin has a newly discovered, additional function: It activates thermogenesis in brown fat, which triggers saturation. Scientists of the Technical University of Munich (TUM) in collaboration with an international team have succeeded in this important step. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Cancer: Brain-derived compounds show surprising benefits

In a Veterans Affairs study, a humanmade compound based on a brain hormone spurred the growth of cancer in Petri dishes but enigmatically had the opposite effect in mice. The compound and others like it are being looked at not only for their effect on cancer, but for their ability to regrow healthy tissue to heal damaged hearts and other organs. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

One size doesn’t fit all, when using hormone therapy to treat endometriosis

Endometriosis — a condition caused by uterine tissue growing outside of the organ — affects 10 percent of reproductive-aged women, whom it causes chronic pain that is significant and debilitating. New research shows that the effectiveness of progestin-therapy depends on whether a woman’s endometriotic lesions have the progesterone receptor (PR) present. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Why some cancers affect only young women

Among several forms of pancreatic cancer, one of them affects specifically women, often young, even though the pancreas is an organ with little exposure to sex hormones. This pancreatic cancer, known as ‚mucinous cyst,‘ has strange similarities with another mucinous cancer, affecting the ovaries. By conducting large-scale analyses of genomic data, researchers have provided an answer: both tumors originate from embryonic germ cells. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Plant Hormone Makes Space Farming a Possibility

With scarce nutrients and weak gravity, growing potatoes on the Moon or on other planets seems unimaginable. But the plant hormone strigolactone could make it possible, plant biologists from the University of Zurich have shown. The hormone supports the symbiosis between fungi and plant roots, thus encouraging plants’ growth – even under the challenging conditions found in space. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Age-related increase in estrogen may cause common men’s hernia

An age-related increase in estrogen may be the culprit behind inguinal hernias, a condition common among elderly men that often requires corrective surgery. Men could be treated with hormone inhibitor to strengthen muscle, the researcher suggests. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Rewriting the textbook on how steroid hormones enter cells

A discovery may open up new ways to control steroid hormone-mediated processes, including growth and development in insects, and sexual maturation, immunity, and cancer progression in humans. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

In depression the brain region for stress control is larger

Although depression is one of the leading psychiatric disorders in Germany, its cause remains unclear. A recent study at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences (MPI CBS) in Leipzig, Germany, and the Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy of the University Clinic in Leipzig found that those affected by depressive disorder have a larger hypothalamus compared to their healthy counterparts. This could explain why many sufferers show increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol and are very often afflicted with periods of tension. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

DGE: Anti-Aging-Hormone halten meist nicht, was sie versprechen

Mit dem Altern geht die Abnahme verschiedener körpereigener Hormone einher. Um diesen „Mangel“ auszugleichen, gibt es einen großen Markt für Hormonersatzpräparate, etwa die Gabe von Testosteron, Wachstumshormon, dem Zirbeldrüsenhormon Melatonin oder Dehydroepiandrosteron (DHEA). Doch substantielle Anti-Aging-Effekte bezüglich dieser Hormongaben seien nicht belegt, sagt die Deutsche Gesellschaft für Endokrinologie (DGE) anlässlich der 3. Deutschen Hormonwoche. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Studie an menschlichen Spermien entschlüsselt schädliche „Cocktail-Effekte“ von Alltagschemikalien

Hormonell wirksame Alltagschemikalien könnten mitverantwortlich sein für Fruchtbarkeitsstörungen, die in der westlichen Welt immer häufiger auftreten. Ein deutsch-dänisches Forscherteam hat diese Chemikalien unter die Lupe genommen. Das Fazit: Kombiniert man die Chemikalien, addieren sich die Einzelwirkungen nicht nur, sondern sie verstärken sich gegenseitig. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Immer der Nase nach: Bestimmte Frauen sind für Männer besonders dufte

Sexualhormone steuern den Monatszyklus der Frau, sorgen für ihre Fruchtbarkeit – und sie sorgen für einen wohlriechenden Körpergeruch. Wie Forschende der Universität Bern nun zeigen, duften einige Frauen in Männernasen besser als andere. Nämlich diejenigen, die für die Fortpflanzung am «fittesten» sind. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Hormone therapy can make prostate cancer worse, study finds

Scientists have discovered how prostate cancer can sometimes withstand and outwit a standard hormone therapy, causing the cancer to spread. Their findings also point to a simple blood test that may help doctors predict when this type of hormone therapy resistance will occur. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Effect of radiation exposure on hormone deficiencies

Researchers have detailed the effect of radiation exposure on the development of hormone deficiency in pediatric and young adult patients treated for brain tumors. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Stress hormone is key factor in failure of immune system to prevent leukemia

The human stress hormone cortisol has been identified as a key factor when the immune system fails to prevent leukemia taking hold. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Übergewichtige Kinder und Teenager: Nicht immer sind die Hormone schuld

Endokrinologen empfehlen: Energiebilanz beachten – weniger essen, mehr bewegen


Seit Mitte der 1970er Jahre sind weltweit immer mehr Kinder und Jugendliche übergewichtig oder adipös. Auch wenn Gene zu etwa 50 Prozent für Körpergewicht und Fettmasse bei Heranwachsenden verantwortlich sind, erklärt dies nach Ansicht der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Endokrinologie e.V. (DGE) nicht allein die große Anzahl Betroffener in dieser Altersgruppe. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Low-protein diet during pregnancy increases prostate cancer risk in offspring, rat study shows

Experiments with rats show that intrauterine protein restriction induces sex hormone imbalance, which appears to favor development of cancer in old age. The rate of prostate tumor development reached 50 percent among the old rats submitted to low-protein diet during pregnancy and lactation alike. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Blocking digestive hormone may prevent diet-induced pancreatic cancer

A high-fat diet may promote the growth of pancreatic cancer independent of obesity because of the interaction between dietary fat and cholecystokinin (CCK), a digestive hormone. In addition, blocking CCK may help prevent the spread of pancreatic tumors to other areas of the body (metastases). (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Fight or flight? Sexual cycle determines the behaviour of female guinea pigs

Due to a stabile social hierarchy, guinea pigs rely on their intuition to decide whether to compete or to escape. So far, there has been limited research on how the sexual cycle may shape female social behaviour in animals. Researchers from the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna, and the University of Vienna showed now that flight was the preferred strategy during experimental confrontation of two females during oestrus. If the animals were not ready to mate, however, their stress hormone level increased stronger and physical contact was more frequent. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Mother-Child Communication in Plants

Researchers decipher how plants steer the development of their embryos using hormones (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)