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Illumina’s New Sequencers

The genetics world was rocked by a surprise announcement from its most prominent company: Illumina is secretly owned by Apple. At least, that would explain the company’s obvious joy at making their previous products look obsolete, and the way their competitors have to constantly protest that, yes, Illumina’s latest gadget is obviously very cool, but wouldn’t you like to compare prices and specifications? (This theory...

NIH publishes first Alzheimer’s genomics dat...

The National Institutes of Health said Monday it has made available for researchers the first batch of genome sequence data from the Alzheimer’s Disease Sequencing Project (ADSP). Established in February 2012 by a Presidential Initiative, the ADSP is a national research project with the aim of finding ways to prevent or effectively treat the memory-stealing disease. Using large-scale genome sequencing, the National...

Mechanical forces at work in living cells and tiss...

Don Ingber, of Harvard University’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, is a mechanobiologist – a member of the small but growing community of scientists who look at biological systems through the lens of physics. Mechanobiologists hope to add to our understanding of physiology, embryology, and disease ontogeny by observing the mechanical forces at work in living cells and tissues. Ingber sees this work...

Bill would fast-track promising antibiotics for FD...

The antibiotics arena hasn’t proved lucrative enough for Big Pharma, leading to a mass exodus from the field in recent years. But pharma companies may have a reason to get back in the antibiotics game. A group of bipartisan members in the House of Representatives introduced a bill late Thursday that aims to combat the growing threat of so-called “superbugs” by essentially providing a fast-track route to FDA...

Human, animal or plant mixed in new R&D recip...

Can a crop science team of ag-bio investigators provide some real insights that could help advance new drugs for humans and animals? Bayer believes so, and one of its top researchers says you can expect to see the first tangible fruits of its hybrid R&D effort in the next few years. Wolfgang Plischke, the outgoing tech/innovation chief at Bayer, told Reuters that “we expect it to be reflected in our pipeline in the...

Major Update to the Human Reference Genome

The Genome Reference Consortium (GRC), the research collaborative responsible for maintaining a comprehensive reference genome for humans, mice, and zebrafish, has released its first complete update to the human reference genome in nearly half a decade. Reference genomes are crucial to genomic research, providing a baseline for assembling genetic fragments into a full picture of the genome, and comparing rare variants against...
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