Medical research

New assay assesses multiple cellular pathways at once

A novel technological approach developed by researchers at Baylor College of Medicine expands from two to six the number of molecular pathways that can be studied simultaneously in a cell sample with the dual luciferase assay, ...

Medical research

Tracking titin in real time

Using new high-resolution imaging techniques, MDC researchers and colleagues have tracked titin, the body's largest protein, in real time throughout its entire lifecycle. The method and results could provide new insight into ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

High-tech method for uniquely targeted gene therapy

Neuroscientists at Lund University in Sweden have developed a new technology that engineers the shell of a virus to deliver gene therapy to the exact cell type in the body that needs to be treated. The researchers believe ...

Oncology & Cancer

Team learns how to predict triple negative breast cancer recurrence

Indiana University School of Medicine researchers have discovered how to predict whether triple negative breast cancer will recur, and which women are likely to remain disease-free. They will present their findings on December ...

Cardiology

Promising findings for treating damaged heart valves

Aortic valve calcification is a challenging condition for the health service and for the patients concerned. The only treatment currently available is surgery. Mariia Boganova recently defended her thesis which addresses ...

Medications

The danger behind certain biologics

Autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, and Crohn's disease plague tens of millions of Americans and are the result of the body's immune system, whose role is to fight against disease-causing pathogens, ...

Medical research

Targeting stem cells that drive aggressive blood cancer

Peter Mac scientists have found a way to target acute myeloid leukemia (AML) at its sourceā€”a discovery that could yield a more effective treatment for this aggressive and often incurable blood cancer.

Health

Could fish oil fight inflammation?

Plentiful in foods like fish and flaxseed, omega-3 fatty acids have long been linked with cardiovascular health, and new research is looking at the biology behind how it might work.

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Cell (biology)

The cell is the structural and functional unit of all known living organisms. It is the smallest unit of an organism that is classified as living, and is often called the building block of life. Some organisms, such as most bacteria, are unicellular (consist of a single cell). Other organisms, such as humans, are multicellular. (Humans have an estimated 100 trillion or 1014 cells; a typical cell size is 10 µm; a typical cell mass is 1 nanogram.) The largest known cell is an unfertilized ostrich egg cell.

In 1835 before the final cell theory was developed, a Czech Jan Evangelista Purkyně observed small "granules" while looking at the plant tissue through a microscope. The cell theory, first developed in 1839 by Matthias Jakob Schleiden and Theodor Schwann, states that all organisms are composed of one or more cells. All cells come from preexisting cells. Vital functions of an organism occur within cells, and all cells contain the hereditary information necessary for regulating cell functions and for transmitting information to the next generation of cells.

The word cell comes from the Latin cellula, meaning, a small room. The descriptive name for the smallest living biological structure was chosen by Robert Hooke in a book he published in 1665 when he compared the cork cells he saw through his microscope to the small rooms monks lived in.

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