New class of enzymes could lead to bespoke diets, therapeutics

Professor Emily Balskus and her team have identified an entirely new class of enzymes that degrade chemicals essential for neurological health, but also help digest foods like nuts, berries, and tea, releasing nutrients that may impact human health.

Caitlin McDermott-Murphy • harvard
Feb. 18, 2020 ~6 min

Tags:  science-technology  chemistry  diet  cancer  bacteria  parkinsons-disease  basic-research  emily-balskus  chemistry-and-chemical-biology  science  caitlin-mcdermott-murphy  microbiome  vayu-maini-rekdal  microbes  berries  bespoke-diets  chocolate  coffee  dopamine  enzymes  gut  l-dopa  microbiology  nutrition  nuts

Harvard researchers find gut microbes can lessen effectiveness of medicines

Study published in Science shows that gut microbes can chew up medications, with serious side effects.

Caitlin McDermott-Murphy • harvard
June 19, 2019 ~9 min

Tags:  science-technology  chemistry  parkinsons-disease  fas  emily-balskus  chemistry-and-chemical-biology  graduate-school-of-arts-and-sciences  science  caitlin-mcdermott-murphy  gut-bacteria  microbiome  vayu-maini-rekdal

Study examines how colibactin causes cancer

In an effort to understand how colibactin, a compound produced by certain strains of E. coli, may be connected to the development of colorectal cancer, Harvard researchers are exploring how the compound damages DNA to produce DNA adducts.

Peter Reuell • harvard
Feb. 19, 2019 ~7 min

Tags:  science-technology  dna  genes  basic-research  faculty-of-arts-and-sciences  fas  harvard  peter-reuell  reuell  balskus  emily-balskus  science  colibactin  colorectal-cancer  dna-adducts  e-coli  molecule

Harvard study looks at how microbes produce cancer fighting compound

Emily Balskus and a team of researchers untangled how soil bacteria are able to manufacture streptozotocin, an antibiotic and anti-cancer compound.

Peter Reuell • harvard
Feb. 7, 2019 ~4 min

Tags:  science-technology  chemistry  cancer  bacteria  biology  basic-research  faculty-of-arts-and-sciences  fas  harvard  peter-reuell  reuell  balskus  chemotherapy  emily-balskus  enzyme  nature  nitrosamine  soil  soil-bacteria  streptozotocin

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