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A new CRISPR technique could fix almost all genetic diseases possible

November 30th, 2019 at 1:35 pm » Comments Off

A new method, called “prime editing,” could, in principle, correct around 89 percent of the mutations that cause inherited human disease. A less error-prone DNA editing method could correct many more harmful mutations than was previously possible. Andrew Anzalone was restless. It was late fall of 2017. The year was winding down, and so was […]



Humans hava a ‘Salamander-like’ ability to regenerate damaged body parts, study finds

October 15th, 2019 at 12:31 pm » Comments Off

  Axolotls (pictured) have a remarkable ability to regenerate lost body parts. Salamanders are renowned for their regenerative capabilities, such as growing back entire limbs. We can’t pull off this biological trick, but new research highlights a previously unknown regenerative ability in humans—one held over from our evolutionary past. Our bodies have retained the capacity […]



Scientists create a device that can mass-produce human embryoids

October 4th, 2019 at 12:22 am » Comments Off

  These human embryo-like structures (top) were synthesized from human stem cells; they’ve been stained to illustrate different cell types. Images (bottom) of the “embryoids” in the new device that was invented to make them. Yi Zheng/University of Michigan, Ann Arbor Scientists have invented a device that can quickly produce large numbers of living entities that […]



Gene-hacking mosquitoes to be infertile backfired spectacularly

September 25th, 2019 at 12:25 pm » Comments Off

    Best-Laid Plans On its surface, the plan was simple: gene-hack mosquitoes so their offspring immediately die, mix them with disease-spreading bugs in the wild, and watch the population drop off. Unfortunately, that didn’t quite pan out. The genetically-altered mosquitoes did mix with the wild population, and for a brief period the number of […]



Why do people love coffee and beer? It’s the buzz, not the taste, study finds

May 11th, 2019 at 1:52 am » Comments Off

“People like the way coffee and alcohol make them feel. That’s why they drink it. It’s not the taste,” a Northwestern University researcher said. Whether you prefer a Café Latte or a diet soda may actually depend on how the drink makes you feel, rather than how it tastes, a new study finds. This idea […]



CRISPR is now being used on humans in the U.S.

May 6th, 2019 at 11:27 am » Comments Off

The gene editing trial has two patients so far. CRISPR therapies are entering the mainstream. The first U.S. trial of CRISPR in humans has begun, NPR reported Tuesday. Two patients are currently being treated as part of a University of Pennsylvania study. Per NPR, both have difficult-to-treat forms of cancer and both have relapsed after […]



Should athletes be allowed to enhance their genes?

May 5th, 2019 at 11:16 am » Comments Off

  So-called gene doping is banned in sports, but some philosophers argue that it’s the way of the future Scientists first developed gene therapy techniques in the 1990s, exploring ways to treat disease by modifying malfunctioning cells. In 1997, a team at John Hopkins University edited genes to create what the media called “Schwarzenegger mice,” […]



The CRISPR machines that can wipe out entire species

February 14th, 2019 at 1:21 pm » Comments Off

The genetic-engineering tool could help combat malaria and invasive species. But should we use it? Charles Darwin had no idea what a gene was. If we dropped the father of evolution into 2019, the idea that humans can willfully alter the genes of an entire species would surely seem like wizardry to him. But CRISPR […]



Synthetic organisms are about to challenge what ‘alive’ really means

January 13th, 2019 at 10:50 am » Comments Off

  We need to begin a serious debate about whether artificially evolved humans are our future, and if we should put an end to these experiments before it is too late. In 2016, Craig Venter and his team at Synthetic Genomics announced that they had created a lifeform called JCVI-syn3.0, whose genome consisted of only […]



What researchers with the world’s longest running study of human aging know for sure

November 7th, 2018 at 12:05 pm » Comments Off

What is aging? That’s the question the National Institutes of Health (NIH) sought to answer in 1958 when it launched the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging (BLSA)—now the world’s longest-running study of human aging. Some 3,200 men and women have played a critical role in advancing our understanding of what it means to get older. […]



IQ scores are falling and have been for decades, new study finds

June 17th, 2018 at 9:35 am » Comments Off

The research suggests that genes aren’t what’s driving the decline in IQ scores “It’s not that dumb people are having more kids than smart people,” researcher says (CNN) — IQ scores have been steadily falling for the past few decades, and environmental factors are to blame, a new study says. The research suggests that genes […]



Gene editing for good

May 1st, 2018 at 9:52 am » Comments Off

How CRISPR could transform global development. Today, more people are living healthy, productive lives than ever before. This good news may come as a surprise, but there is plenty of evidence for it. Since the early 1990s, global child mortality has been cut in half. There have been massive reductions in cases of tuberculosis, malaria, […]



Is death our only option?