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Genomics Week in Brief: Week ending 16th February

Welcome back to Week in Brief, where you can get the latest and greatest news from the genomics world and beyond!

We’ve gained new understanding of conception and birth this week…

A study has revealed that low birth weight in infants born as a result of fertility treatments, like IVF, is linked to mutations in mitochondrial DNA (Nature Communications).

Research has revealed that genes shared between a mother and her child explain the link between low birth weight and future cardiovascular disease risk (Communications Biology).

A large-scale single-cell analysis of prenatal mouse development has tracked gene expression and cell type changes during gestation, revealing that significant transcriptional changes occur during birth (Nature).

A pair of genes has been discovered that play a key role in male fertility, mutations in which can impact sperm production (Molecular Cell).

And scientists have made new discoveries about cardiovascular health…

New research has revealed that targeting the microenvironment, rather than one specific type of cell, could be key in the regeneration and repair of damaged heart tissue (Nature Cardiovascular Research).

A study has analysed the links between variants in the IL-6 gene and arthrosclerosis, contributing to our knowledge of cardiovascular health (Biomolecules and Biomedicine).

An experiment in rats has shown that gene therapy could be used to treat advanced heart failure, increasing cardiac function (Cardiovascular Research).

Different techniques have been put to the test to further cancer research…

Scientists have developed a method to treat liver cancer using magnetic-guided microrobots (Science Robotics).

A large-scale proteogenomics study has highlighted the interplay between immune cells in 10 distinct cancer types (Cell).

An international trial has shown that a new drug, pegargiminase, in combination with chemotherapy significantly increases treatment success for mesothelioma (JAMA Oncology).

What else has gone on in the genomics world this week?

A phenome-wide analysis has revealed that variants in the gene APOL1, which are more commonly found in those of African Ancestry, are linked to a range of human health conditions (eBioMedicine).

Scientists have uncovered 145 genes that are linked to DNA damage, having subsequent impacts on human health (Nature).

A recent trial has shown progress in the treatment of HIV using a combination of the drug vorinostat and immunotherapy. This method activates the virus from its latent state and targets it for treatment, but is still far from the clinic (Journal of Infectious Diseases).

Researchers have developed a web-based platform for genomic data analysis that can help to more easily identify disease-causing variants in mitochondria (Current Protocols).

Check out last week’s Week in Brief here.