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Genome-wide analysis reveals genetic similarities among friends: Study finds truth to ‘friends are the family you choose’

Genome-wide analysis reveals genetic similarities among friends: Study finds truth to ‘friends are the family you choose’

If you consider your friends family, you may be on to something. A study from the University of California, San Diego, and Yale University finds that friends who are not biologically related still resemble each other genetically. Continue reading

Cause of mysterious food allergy found, new treatment strategy suggested

Cause of mysterious food allergy found, new treatment strategy suggested

New research in Nature Genetics identifies a novel genetic and molecular pathway in the esophagus that causes eosinophillic esophagitis (EoE), opening up potential new therapeutic strategies for an enigmatic and hard-to-treat food allergy. Continue reading

Inherited ‘memory’ of poor nutrition during pregnancy passed through sperm of male offspring

Inherited ‘memory’ of poor nutrition during pregnancy passed through sperm of male offspring

When a pregnant mother is undernourished, her child is at a greater than average risk of developing obesity and type 2 diabetes, in part due to so-called ‘epigenetic’ effects. A new study in mice demonstrates that this ‘memory’ of nutrition during pregnancy can be passed through sperm of male offspring to the next generation, increasing risk of disease for her grandchildren as well — in other words, to adapt an old maxim, ‘you are what your grandmother ate’ Continue reading

Inherited ‘memory’ of poor nutrition during pregnancy passed through sperm of male offspring

Inherited ‘memory’ of poor nutrition during pregnancy passed through sperm of male offspring

When a pregnant mother is undernourished, her child is at a greater than average risk of developing obesity and type 2 diabetes, in part due to so-called ‘epigenetic’ effects. A new study in mice demonstrates that this ‘memory’ of nutrition during pregnancy can be passed through sperm of male offspring to the next generation, increasing risk of disease for her grandchildren as well — in other words, to adapt an old maxim, ‘you are what your grandmother ate’ Continue reading

No extra mutations in modified stem cells, study finds

No extra mutations in modified stem cells, study finds

The ability to switch out one gene for another in a line of living stem cells has only crossed from science fiction to reality within this decade. As with any new technology, it brings with it both promise–the hope of fixing disease-causing genes in humans, for example–as well as questions and safety concerns. Now, Salk scientists have put one of those concerns to rest: using gene-editing techniques on stem cells doesn’t increase the overall occurrence of mutations in the cells Continue reading

Nanoparticles used to enhance chemotherapy

Nanoparticles used to enhance chemotherapy

University of Georgia researchers have developed a new formulation of cisplatin, a common chemotherapy drug, that significantly increases the drug’s ability to target and destroy cancerous cells. Continue reading

Sweet genes: New way found by which metabolism is linked to the regulation of DNA

Sweet genes: New way found by which metabolism is linked to the regulation of DNA

A research team at the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry at the University of Alberta have discovered a new way by which metabolism is linked to the regulation of DNA, the basis of our genetic code. The findings may have important implications for the understanding of many common diseases, including cancer. Continue reading

Stem cell type resists chemotherapy drug

Stem cell type resists chemotherapy drug

A new study shows that adipose-derived human stem cells, which can become vital tissues such as bone, may be highly resistant to the common chemotherapy drug methotrexate (MTX). The preliminary finding from lab testing may prove significant because MTX causes bone tissue damage in many patients. MTX is used to treat cancers including acute lymphoblastic leukemia, the most common form of childhood cancer. Continue reading

Evolution of life’s operating system revealed in detail

Evolution of life’s operating system revealed in detail

The evolution of the ribosome, a large molecular structure found in the cells of all species, has been revealed in unprecedented detail in a new study. Continue reading

Phase III trial shows improved survival with TAS-102 in metastatic colorectal cancer refractory to standard therapies

Phase III trial shows improved survival with TAS-102 in metastatic colorectal cancer refractory to standard therapies

The new combination agent TAS-102 is able to improve overall survival compared to placebo in patients whose metastatic colorectal cancer is refractory to standard therapies, researchers said at the ESMO 16th World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer in Barcelona. “Around 50% of patients with colorectal cancer develop metastases but eventually many of them do not respond to standard therapies,” said Takayuki Yoshino of the National Cancer Centre Hospital East in Chiba, Japan, lead author of the phase III RECOURSE trial. Continue reading