Immune Avengers Assemble There are membranes wrapped around…

Immune Avengers Assemble

There are membranes wrapped around all of our cells, and single-celled organisms like bacteria, too. But they do more than just hold everything in – tiny tunnel-like pores control the flow of important chemicals in and out. Usually this delicate balance helps life along. But here is a pore-making protein that can kill. The complement membrane attack complex (MAC) assembles from a group of proteins in our blood, triggered by our immune system to punch holes in nasty pathogens like bacteria – its long strands piercing the cell surface while precious chemicals burst out. Examining the structure of MAC using cryogenic electron microscopy allows scientists to spot a crucial step in how these avenging proteins come together – slotting together a series of identical protein pieces into a ring shape, before it can begin to penetrate the cell. This insight may help the design of drugs to help MAC tackle infections.

Written by John Ankers

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HiPOD (19 October 2018): Polar Hypnosis   – One of the goals of…

HiPOD (19 October 2018): Polar Hypnosis

   – One of the goals of this observation is to determine if the North Polar layered deposits are gaining or losing mass. But looking at this crater is just hypnotic. (318 km above the surface. Black and white is less than 5 km across; enhanced color is less than 1 km and is at full resolution.)

NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

3,200-year-old ivory plaque linked to Assyria found in eastern Turkey

An ivory plaque dating back 3,200 years was found in eastern Turkey’s Malatya province, giving clues on a potential link between Assyria and the region, the head of an excavation team said.

3,200-year-old ivory plaque linked to Assyria found in eastern Turkey
Credit: DHA

“The ivory plaque is a very important finding, as it was found for the first time here,” the head of an excavation team and professor at the Sapienza University of Rome, Marcelle Frangipane, told Anadolu Agency.
Frangipane said scientific studies on the “unique artefact” — found two years ago at the Archaeological Site of Arslantepe — was completed.

The plaque, thought to have belonged to 1,200 BC, has a rectangular frame measuring 4.3 by 8.1 centimetres (1.6 by 3.1 inches). It is also 0.8-cm (0.3 inches) thick.

3,200-year-old ivory plaque linked to Assyria found in eastern Turkey
Credit: DHA

“There are two goat figures and there is a plant, like a tree, between these figures. There are decorational motives around the plaque,” she described, adding: “These motives were mostly used by Assyrians in Syria. The plaque may be coming from Assyria, or may have been made here.”
Stating the carvings were very similar in style to those found in Iraq and Syria, she said: “It might be a decoration of furniture. It is a beautiful work of art and it is important for the history of the mound.”

“It is the same with the motives in Syria, Iraq and Nemrut [in southeastern Adiyaman]; there may be a trade relation between them,” Frangipane said, adding that they did not know the exact connection yet.

3,200-year-old ivory plaque linked to Assyria found in eastern Turkey
Credit: DHA

She said the finding was one of a kind, as it was the first piece found in the area that showed a link with the south (Assyria).
“These kinds of artefacts are found in Syria and Mesopotamia, but it is a unique piece for here,” she noted.

The four-hectare and 30-meter high archaeological mound, lying 5 kilometres away from the city centre, was accepted into the UNESCO Tentative List of World Heritage on April 15, 2014.

3,200-year-old ivory plaque linked to Assyria found in eastern Turkey
Credit: DHA

According to the UNESCO, Arslantepe’s excavations have been conducted since 1961 on behalf of Turkish Culture and Tourism Ministry and the Italian Archaeological Expedition of the Sapienza University of Rome.

Arslantepe — where findings from Late Chalcolithic Era in 5,000 B.C. and the Iron Age were found — was home to many civilizations, such as Hittites, Romans and Byzantines.

During the past years’ excavations, lion statues and an overturned king sculpture were unearthed, as well as the adobe palace, which has a drain rainwater infrastructure and more than 2,000 seals, which reveals the structure of the first city-state in the Anatolia.

Source: Daily Sabah [October 19, 2018]