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Gene editing method may cause chromosome loss in developing embryos

Gene editing method may cause chromosome loss in developing embryos

Health
Oct. 29 (UPI) -- Researchers testing technology to edit DNA during human development -- with the hope of preventing disease -- have found that the process often eliminates an entire section of genetic material and could threaten the health of the baby, according to a study published Thursday in the journal Cell. The technology, the CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing method, allows scientists to make precise changes to the DNA of cells. Advertisement Chromosomes are DNA molecules that carry genetic information from parent to child, and they exist in matching pairs, with one for each pair inherited from each biological parent. This chromosome loss, the result of a "single break" in embryonic DNA during the editing process, could have a significant impact on the healthy development of the baby, the ...
Improved method for propagating sound waves may lead to better devices

Improved method for propagating sound waves may lead to better devices

Science
July 17 (UPI) -- Engineers have developed a way to more efficiently propagate sound waves along the boundaries of topological materials. The breakthrough, described Friday in the journal Science Advances, could pave the way for cheaper, lighter and more energy efficient technologies, including ultrasound imaging, sonar and electronic systems sonic devices. Advertisement The new technique could prove especially beneficial to devices that utilize acoustic wave technology, including temperature sensors, pressure sensors, humidity sensors and biosensors. Acoustic wave technology also powers many large touch screens, like those found on ATM machines and airport kiosks. Topological materials and metamaterials are materials that feature properties unaffected by continuous deformation -- pattern...
New imaging method could speed up breast cancer diagnosis

New imaging method could speed up breast cancer diagnosis

Health
Dec. 20 (UPI) -- Researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have created a new technology to track tumor development within human breast tissue, a study says. The new system has the potential to speed up a normally lengthy process. A traditional cancer diagnosis takes a few days and requires tissue to be removed, dyed with chemicals and examined by a pathologist. This research, published Wednesday in Science Advances, detailed how the portable optical imaging system simultaneously captured images from surgically-removed breast tissue with light pulses in four modalities. The researchers tested their new tool during breast cancer surgeries at Carle Foundation Hospital. They took cancer breast tissue removed from patients and located particular molecular features linked t...
Stem cells grow more quickly, efficiently in new method

Stem cells grow more quickly, efficiently in new method

Health
Aug. 22 (UPI) -- Researchers have developed a new way to generate functional brain cells that cuts the time from months to two weeks. The astrocytes, which come from embryonic stem cells, play a significant role in neurodegenerative diseases, including dementia and ALS. The findings by Lund University in Sweden were published Monday in the journal Nature Methods. "This means that it is now easier than before to study the role of astrocytes in various diseases," Dr. Henrik Ahlenius, who led the research team at Lund, said in a press release. Researchers have known about the presence in the brain of the star-shaped glial cells for years but only recently have scientists discovered their significance. Researchers have faced difficulty in obtaining human astrocytes because it's a time-consum...
Method developed to test new Parkinson's therapies

Method developed to test new Parkinson's therapies

Health
Aug. 21 (UPI) -- Researchers have developed a new tool that can evaluate new therapies for Parkinson's disease, which they say could lead to quicker development of drugs to treat the neurological condition. In a test of mice, the new model induces the biology of a disease-causing gene rather than the symptoms. Researchers at the University of British Columbia's Djavad Mowafaghian Center for Brain Health published their findings Tuesday in the journal Nature Parkinson's Disease. Parkinson's disease is a chronic, degenerative neurological disorder that affects the body's motor system, causing people to shake and have difficulty with movements. In the United States, about 10 million people have the illness, according to the Parkinson's Disease Foundation. Many patients have mutations in a ge...