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Is Genetic Surgery in My Future?: A conversation with Dr. John Doench about CRISPR and genome editing

by Christopher Gerry figures by Mike MacArthur The last few years have seen an explosion in our capacity to study the human genetic code. In particular, a technology called CRISPR/Cas9 has been at the forefront of many of these advances, capturing the imagination of scientists and the attention of the general public. CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) is a type of bacterial self-defense … Continue reading Is Genetic Surgery in My Future?: A conversation with Dr. John Doench about CRISPR and genome editing

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A new medical implant might greatly reduce the risk of chemotherapy treatment

Chemotherapy is a common and dangerous cancer treatment due to the negative effects on everything that is not a tumor cell. Researchers from Columbia University have invented a soft medical implant capable of administering drugs from inside the body. The ability to place this device close to the target area allows for a significant (90%) reduction of the drug dosage to be used. Similarly, avoiding body-wide administration of the drug can greatly reduce the damage inflicted by normal chemotherapy dosages. Continue reading A new medical implant might greatly reduce the risk of chemotherapy treatment

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Yum! Recommendations Suggest Feeding Most Babies Peanuts to Help Prevent Allergies

Peanut allergies have the potential to seriously impact a child’s life. In some cases, the mere presence of a peanut-product can create a life threatening situation. Over the years, doctors have released a variety of recommendations designed to limit the number of children who ever develop an allergy. In 2000, it was recommended that infants avoid peanuts altogether. Since then, peanuts in the first year … Continue reading Yum! Recommendations Suggest Feeding Most Babies Peanuts to Help Prevent Allergies

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Getting all your ducklings in a row: a look inside the animal mind

by Rebecca Senft figures by Michael Gerhardt and Rebecca Senft If you’ve ever seen a long line of ducklings waddling across a road, you know that they follow their mother dutifully, even in the face of oncoming traffic. Ducklings, like many species of birds whose young leave the nest early, are able to identify their own mother and siblings based on sight and won’t follow … Continue reading Getting all your ducklings in a row: a look inside the animal mind

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Why are hurricanes weakening? Possible reasons and the long term pattern

In 2012, Hurricane Sandy, the second costliest hurricane in United States history, caused the loss of 233 lives and assessed damage of 75 billion dollars. With Sandy still on the minds of many, it may surprise you that America’s Atlantic coast may actually be in the middle of a decades long lull in hurricane activity. Researchers at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) published this surprising … Continue reading Why are hurricanes weakening? Possible reasons and the long term pattern

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Cancer Moonshot Musings Part I: Precision Prevention

By Steph Guerra, Figures by Rebecca Clements It has been one year since President Obama announced the Cancer Moonshot Initiative. Since then, the Moonshot has convened a Blue Ribbon panel to brainstorm ten recommendations to be completed over the course of the next five years. In this series of articles, I will explain the science behind some of these proposals with an aim to evaluate their utility … Continue reading Cancer Moonshot Musings Part I: Precision Prevention

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Scientists observe light from antimatter for the first time

Physicists at CERN have observed the light emitted from antimatter for the first time, bringing us one step closer to unraveling one of the longest-standing problems in physics today – why is it that regular matter is so much more abundant than antimatter in the Universe? Standard models suggest that for every particle of matter created in the Big Bang, an antiparticle was also created. … Continue reading Scientists observe light from antimatter for the first time