Why exercise gets harder the less you do

Doing less exercise could deactivate a vital protein in the body, causing further inactivity and making exercise more difficult, new research suggests.  Deactivating the Piezo1 protein, a blood flow sensor, reduces the density of capillaries carrying blood to the muscles.  This restricted blood flow means activity becomes more difficult and can lead to a reduction in how much exercise is possible. This helps to explain the biology of why exercise becomes harder the less you do.

How the body fights back against cancer

New research reveals how our immune system can be triggered to attack cancer cells. The research could help develop new approaches to treating people with leukemia. The team studied acute myeloid leukaemia – a blood cancer which is very difficult to treat. The study identified a process of activating the immune system to fight the leukaemia cells.

New optical tweezers put on the pressure to change color

Scientists demonstrate an optical trapping technique using nanotextured black silicon that can efficiently trap polymer chains. By adjusting the laser intensity, these ‘optical tweezers’ can control the florescence color emitted through a local concentration of a perylene-modified polymer solution. From a low intensity blue to high intensity orange, this reversible and fully remote technology can almost reach the entire RGB spectrum.