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Genomics week in brief: Week ending 24th July

Enjoy this week’s genomics week in brief – jam-packed with some of the latest genomics news and research from the past week.

Top stories from the past week

  • Researchers have discovered a fundamental mechanism that appears to speed up the change of stem cells into other cell types. These findings may help improve stem cell therapies. (Desai et al, 2021)
  • An experimental small molecule drug has been reported to induce readthrough of cystic fibrosis CFTR nonsense mutations in rat cells. (Sharma et al, 2021)
  • Researchers have developed a new optogenetic tool that, unlike others, is not switched on but rather switched off by light. (Karapinar et al, 2021)
  • In a recent study, researchers have identified differences in neutrophil activity between male and female mice. (Lu et al, 2021)
  • Researchers have discovered how cancer cells that spread to lymph nodes avoid immune destruction. (Jones et al, 2021)
  • A team of scientists has demonstrated how cells originating from different organs are differentially susceptible to activating mutations. (Falcomata et al, 2021)
  • In a new study, researchers have reported that T cells can be engineered to clear tumours without succumbing to T cell exhaustion. (Seo et al, 2021)
  • The Wistar Institute has described an important function of alternative polyadenylation that allows certain mRNAs to reach specific sites of protein synthesis. (Cheng et al, 2021)
  • Researchers have discovered nucleotide sequences characteristic of microRNA isoforms that are responsible for effectively fighting pathogens. (Zhiyanov et al, 2021)
  • A team of researchers has applied high-throughput genomics to identify rare highly penetrant genetic variants that drive the development of gestational diabetes. (Pace et al, 2021)
  • By analysing the structure of the protein responsible for chromosome separation, an international team has shed light on the mechanisms controlling this essential player in cell division. (Yu et al, 2021)
  • Researchers have clarified the role of two isoforms of KRAS – the most common oncogene in humans. (Salmón et al, 2021)

In other news

  • St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital investigators have demonstrated that comprehensive genomic sequencing of all paediatric cancer patients is feasible and important to better understand and treat these patients. (Newman et al, 2021)
  • Pacific Biosciences announced last week that it has signed a merger agreement under which it will acquire short-read sequencing company Omniome. (PacBio, 2021)


  • Join us tomorrow (Tuesday 27th July) at 3pm BST/4pm CEST/10am EDT for the final webinar in our ‘Cancer Genomics ONLINE’ series. In this webinar, we explore the intersection of genomics and immunotherapy, and highlight the opportunities of immunogenomics in cancer research and care.

More on these topics

Cancer / Genomics / Week in brief