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Archive for the ‘biotech/medical’ category: Page 3

May 12, 2022

Largest-Ever Collection of Brain Maps Charts How the Brain Changes Over a Lifetime

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

BrainChart is a standardized open-source database of MRI brain scans across 100 years of the human lifespan.

May 12, 2022

Could an Atlas of the Brain’s Genome Solve Neuropsychiatric Disorders?

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, genetics, neuroscience

Dr. Thomas Lehner was tired of his research repeatedly hitting a wall.

A scientist at the National Institute of Mental Health, Lehner studies the genetic underpinnings of neuropsychiatric disorders. Teasing out associated genes turned out to be relatively simple. Schizophrenia, for example, is linked to small variations in some 360 genes.

The problem is identifying the ones that really matter—culprit gene variants that can be turned into predictive tests, similar to the BRCA gene for breast cancer.

Continue reading “Could an Atlas of the Brain’s Genome Solve Neuropsychiatric Disorders?” »

May 12, 2022

Future pandemic risks are increasing

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, futurism

COVID-19 may prove to be just the first in a series of pandemics throughout the 21st century – unless humans drastically improve their relationship with animals and the natural world.

May 12, 2022

Scientists synthesize new, ultra-hard material

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, engineering, military, nanotechnology

Russian scientists have synthesized a new ultra-hard material consisting of scandium containing carbon. It consists of polymerized fullerene molecules with scandium and carbon atoms inside. The work paves the way for future studies of fullerene-based ultra-hard materials, making them a potential candidate for photovoltaic and optical devices, elements of nanoelectronics and optoelectronics, and biomedical engineering as high-performance contrast agents. The study was published in Carbon.

The discovery of new, all-carbon molecules known as fullerenes almost 40 years ago was a revolutionary breakthrough that paved the way for fullerene nanotechnology. Fullerenes have a made of pentagons and hexagons that resembles a , and a cavity within the carbon frame of fullerene molecules can accommodate a variety of atoms.

The introduction of metal atoms into carbon cages leads to the formation of endohedral metallofullerenes (EMF), which are technologically and scientifically important owing to their unique structures and optoelectronic properties.

May 12, 2022

Designer neurons bring hope for treatment of Parkinson’s disease

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

May 12, 2022

The Hidden Race to Protect the US Bioeconomy From Hacker Threats

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

A biotech threat intelligence group is gaining supporters as urgency mounts around an overlooked vulnerable sector.

May 12, 2022

Transfusion of brain fluid from young mice is a memory-elevating elixir for old animals

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, robotics/AI

For a human, one of the first signs someone is getting old is the inability to remember little things; maybe they misplace their keys, or get lost on an oft-taken route. For a laboratory mouse, it’s forgetting that when bright lights and a high-pitched buzz flood your cage, an electric zap to the foot quickly follows.

But researchers at Stanford University discovered that if you transfuse cerebrospinal fluid from a young mouse into an old one, it will recover its former powers of recall and freeze in anticipation. They also identified a protein in that cerebrospinal fluid, or CSF, that penetrates into the hippocampus, where it drives improvements in memory.

The tantalizing breakthrough, published Wednesday in Nature, suggests that youthful factors circulating in the CSF, or drugs that target the same pathways, might be tapped to slow the cognitive declines of old age. Perhaps even more importantly, it shows for the first time the potential of CSF as a vehicle to get therapeutics for neurological diseases into the hard-to-reach fissures of the human brain.

Continue reading “Transfusion of brain fluid from young mice is a memory-elevating elixir for old animals” »

May 12, 2022

UCSF Gene Therapy for Deadly Mutation Fast-Tracked for FDA Review

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, genetics

A new fast-track review for UCSF gene therapy could help more kids with deadly Artemis-SCID disease get life-saving treatment sooner.

May 11, 2022

Genomic Editing of Non-Coding RNA Genes with CRISPR/Cas9 Ushers in a Potential Novel Approach to Study and Treat Schizophrenia

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, genetics, health, neuroscience

Circa 2017


Schizophrenia is a genetically related mental illness, in which the majority of genetic alterations occur in the non-coding regions of the human genome. In the past decade, a growing number of regulatory non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) including microRNAs (miRNAs) and long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) have been identified to be strongly associated with schizophrenia. However, the studies of these ncRNAs in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia and the reverting of their genetic defects in restoration of the normal phenotype have been hampered by insufficient technology to manipulate these ncRNA genes effectively as well as a lack of appropriate animal models. Most recently, a revolutionary gene editing technology known as Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR)/CRISPR-associated nuclease 9 (Cas9; CRISPR/Cas9) has been developed that enable researchers to overcome these challenges. In this review article, we mainly focus on the schizophrenia-related ncRNAs and the use of CRISPR/Cas9-mediated editing on the non-coding regions of the genomic DNA in proving causal relationship between the genetic defects and the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. We subsequently discuss the potential of translating this advanced technology into a clinical therapy for schizophrenia, although the CRISPR/Cas9 technology is currently still in its infancy and immature to put into use in the treatment of diseases. Furthermore, we suggest strategies to accelerate the pace from the bench to the bedside. This review describes the application of the powerful and feasible CRISPR/Cas9 technology to manipulate schizophrenia-associated ncRNA genes. This technology could help researchers tackle this complex health problem and perhaps other genetically related mental disorders due to the overlapping genetic alterations of schizophrenia with other mental illnesses.

Keywords: CRISPR/Cas9; gene editing; lncRNAs; miRNAs; non-coding RNAs; schizophrenia.

Continue reading “Genomic Editing of Non-Coding RNA Genes with CRISPR/Cas9 Ushers in a Potential Novel Approach to Study and Treat Schizophrenia” »

May 11, 2022

These ‘smart’ contact lenses have a built-in display for augmented reality

Posted by in categories: augmented reality, biotech/medical, computing

Circa 2020


A startup has built what it claims is the “world’s first true smart contact lens” with an embedded display that would bring augmented reality experiences closer to your eyeball than ever before.

The company is called Mojo Vision, and its Mojo Lens is the culmination of over a decade of research, development, and patent filings (it’s racked up over 100 patents to date). While it’s not shipping a product (yet), the company is currently demonstrating a working prototype.

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