Issue 12 / 2016

Microscale Chemistry: Small tools, big fun!

Microscale Chemistry: Small tools, big fun!

Microscale Chemistry was first introduced by Egerton Grey in 1928. However, this approach only started to gain interest 20 years ago.

SciMy Interview: Mr Mohd Izmir Yamin of the Malaysian Independence-X team at Google Lunar XPRIZE

SciMy Interview: Mr Mohd Izmir Yamin of the Malaysian Independence-X team at Google Lunar XPRIZE

The Google Lunar XPRIZE (GLXP) is the largest incentive competition of all time, aiming to reward the brightest minds of space entrepreneurs to create a new era of economical and easy access to the Moon. Our correspondent, Dr. New Jaa Yien, spoke to the Malaysian team of Independence-X Team, currently led by the Founder and CEO of Independence-X Aerospace Sdn. Bhd., Mr. Mohd. Izmir Yamin, on the team’s progress in racing to the final stage of the competition.

Current Progress on Malaria Vaccines

Current Progress on Malaria Vaccines

Non-vaccine approaches for tackling malaria have made an impact in reducing the number of malaria cases and deaths but a vaccine would help tremendously towards malaria elimination. New sources of funding such as those from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, pharmaceutical companies and oil companies in the last decade has enabled rapid advances in malaria vaccine development. We are likely to see the RTS,S/AS01 vaccine to be licensed for use in the next few years despite its low efficacy.

Teaching Your Immune System to Fight Cancer

Teaching Your Immune System to Fight Cancer

by Litt-Yee Hiew Our immune system is naturally gifted with remarkable specificity, potency and memory. So far, no pharmacological treatment for any diseases could possibly provide comparable level of safety, efficacy and lasting effects as the human immune response. In the treatment of cancer, after […]

The Imitation

The Imitation

by Nur Atikah Abdullah, Charles George Gajim, and Seti Faezah Rosli Disclaimer: the following article is a fictional piece that may or may not be scientifically accurate. Reading with discretion is advised. At a Glance: The idea of vaccination has always been heavily debated throughout the […]

Snake antivenoms: science, values and challenges

Snake antivenoms: science, values and challenges

Bites from venomous snakes can lead to snakebite envenomation (not poisoning), and antivenom is the only definitive therapy to date. Antivenoms used in current clinical practices are derived from antibodies of animals (e.g. horses) that have been immunised with one or a mix of snake venoms. However, the production of these biologics is highly costly, and there is no universal antivenom, as the effectiveness is limited by the different snake species and their geographical locality. The production and use of antivenoms can be optimised by unravelling the complexity of venoms, especially their immunogenicity and the dynamics-kinetics of venom-antivenom interplay.

A ‘Trp’ to the land of Kyns

A ‘Trp’ to the land of Kyns

Breakdown of the amino acid tryptophan through the kynurenine pathway impacts a plethora of immunological processes, ranging from the starvation of invading bacteria to the induction of immunotolerance and the modulation of neurological diseases.

Childhood vaccine controversies: the myths, the facts and the uncertainties

Childhood vaccine controversies: the myths, the facts and the uncertainties

by Dr Adli Ali Vaccine controversies and anti-vaccine movements are not something new. They began some 90 years ago in the early 20th century, even before the term “vaccination” was formally used. Let us now revisit what we may consider to be the 7 most scientifically […]