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Genomics Week in Brief: Week ending 27th August

Check out the latest Genomics Week In Brief – full of intriguing news and research from the genomics space!

Top stories from the past week:

  • CRISPR-Cas3 has been used to restore dystrophin function in stem cells derived from Duchene muscular dystrophy patients (Stem Cell Reports).
  • Researchers have developed a method to transplant engineered stem cells into damaged lung tissue (Cell Stem Cell).
  • Scientists have classified SARS-related viruses into three distinct serotypes. This new grouping highlights a need for targeted treatment and prevention approaches (hLife).
  • Age-related mutations in haematopoietic stem cells have been seen to exacerbate colon cancer (Journal of Experimental Medicine).
  • A large-scale international GWAS has identified a variant associated with Parkinson’s disease in those of African ancestry (The Lancet Neurology).
  • AI has been used to calculate protein risk scores using plasma proteomics data to predict cardiovascular events (JAMA).
  • An epigenetic target against Epstein-Barr-associated gastric cancers has been identified (mBio).
  • A study of Alzheimer’s patient-derived stem cells has revealed mechanisms through which the SORL1 gene may contribute to the disease (Cell Reports).
  • In a study that could revolutionise ageing research, scientists have transferred a longevity-associated gene from naked mole rats to mice, increasing the latter’s lifespan (Nature).
  • Researchers have developed an AI tool to assess electronic health records and predict certain stomach cancers years before diagnosis. This could allow for preventative approaches to be taken (Gastroenterology).
  • After elucidating the functional role of KRAS mutations in pancreatic cancer, scientists have used a combination of KRAS inhibitors and immunotherapy to successfully treat the disease in preclinical models (Developmental Cell and Cancer Cell).
  • Analysis of data from UK Biobank and the Whitehall II cohort has revealed several new risk factors for dementia (BMJ Mental Health).

In other news:

  • A recent study has warned that digestive symptoms may be an early sign of Parkinson’s disease (BMJ).
  • And speaking of Parkinson’s disease, eye scans could potentially be used to diagnose the condition up to seven years earlier. This discovery follows the identification of a number of relevant markers in eye scans from patients (University College London).
  • Finally, this week, scientists have performed the first womb transplant in the UK. It is hoped that the patient, who was born without a functioning uterus and received the organ from her sister, can go on to have her own children via IVF (Oxford University Hospitals).

Read last week’s Genomics Week in Brief here!