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Genomics Week in Brief: Week Ending 31st May

Welcome back to Week in Brief, where we’ve summarised the biggest news in the genomics world!

The NHS has made big announcements regarding cancer treatment this week…

It has been announced that NHS England’s new Cancer Vaccine Launchpad will see thousands of cancer patients ‘matched’ with clinical trials for personalised vaccines. The first patient treated as part of the programme received a vaccine against bowel cancer (NHS England).

NHS England have announced that they will await the final results of the NHS-Galleri trial in 2026 before deciding whether the multi-cancer early detection test should be integrated into clinical care (NHS England).

Researchers have made progress on the drug delivery front…

A foaming liquid may be the way forward in the efficient delivery of gene therapies to cells. This method could also decrease the cost associated with gene therapy, according to a new study (Nature Communications).

‘Cloaking’ proteins with negatively charged ions, making them appear more like a nucleic acid, could be the key to delivering protein payloads to cells via lipid nanoparticles (ACS Central Science).

Additionally, researchers have designed a ‘cage’ for drug delivery, made out of an amino acid found in chicken feathers. The cage can transport chemotherapy drugs and limit damage to healthy cells (Chem).

Single-cell tech has contributed to new breakthroughs this week…

Researchers have used single-cell RNA sequencing to determine how the circadian clock impacts cancer progression, and assess how this could be leveraged in treatment strategies (Nature Immunology).

Using a new single-cell technology called Strand-seq, researchers have determined that genetic mosaicism is more common than previously thought. 1 in 40 human bone marrow cells were seen to harbour chromosomal alterations (Nature Genetics).

What else has been published this week?

A study has shown that altering the treatment schedule of a popular cancer drug could be the eco-friendly way forward. The results showed that giving a double dose of pembrolizumab every six weeks, compared to the standard dose every three weeks, significantly reduced greenhouse gas emissions (The Lancet Oncology).

Researchers have developed a new antibiotic, lolamicin. It performed well in cell culture experiments and eliminated multi-drug resistant bacteria in mice, whilst sparing ‘good’ gut bacteria (Nature).

Researchers have used CRISPR interference to map the mechanisms underpinning the regulation of the genes that control T cell function. The findings shed light on immune responses and autoimmune disease (Nature Genetics).

FInally, scientists have completed the first chromosome sequences from non-human primates, focusing on sex chromosomes, in order to better understand evolution (Nature).

Check out last week’s Week in Brief here.