Frontier science matters

Featuring topics related to frontier life science research that go beyond the research supported directly by HFSP. See also ...

Topics

How fish see infrared light: solving a 100-year old mystery in vision science

By HFSP Program Grant alumnus Joseph Corbo

In 1896, two German scientists, Köttgen and Abelsdorff, made a curious observation: when they measured the absorption properties of visual pigments (the molecules that mediate light sensation) extracted from the eyes of freshwater fish, they found them to be ‘red-shifted’ towards longer wavelengths than those of marine fish and land animals. The significance of this seemingly obscure discovery was not appreciated until nearly 40 years later, when George Wald took up the problem...

Crowdsourcing the design of swarming nanoparticles for cancer applications

by HFSP Cross-Disciplinary Fellow Sabine Hauert

The treatment of cancer is undergoing what could be called a revolution. The field has attracted the attention of bioengineers trying to design nanoparticles that can deliver drugs and therapeutics directly to tumors. Their size, typically 10 nm to 500 nm, is ideal to leak out of porous vessels deep in tumors while remaining in the blood stream throughout the rest of the body. This allows nanoparticles to passively accumulate in tumors while reducing side effects on healthy tissue. This article...