Man’s impact on flax evolution more limited than thought
Flax naturally adapted to new environments rather than by human influence due to a set of genes that enable it to change its architecture according to researchers from the School of Life Sciences at the University of Warwick. (read more in Phys.org).
CRISPR babies raise an uncomfortable reality – abiding by scientific standards doesn’t guarantee ethical research
“Uncertainty continues to swirl around scientist He Jiankui’s gene editing experiment in China. Using CRISPR technology, He modified a gene related to immune function in human embryos and transferred the embryos to their mother’s womb, producing twin girls.
Many questions about the ethical acceptability of the experiment have focused on ethical oversight and informed consent. These are important issues; compliance with established standards of practice is crucial for public trust in science.” (read more in Philly Voice 26Dec2018)
Parrot Genomes Provide Insights Into Evolution Of Longevity And Cognition
“Analysis of the genome of an Amazon parrot and 26 other birds revealed that long-lived birds share a large number of similar mutations in genes associated with longevity, larger brains and advanced cognitive abilities — and parrots evolved new genes associated with learning speech” (read more in 2018 Forbes Media LLC)
CRISPR without the Chop Reverses Genetic Obesity in Mice
“Scientists at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) have used a modified version of CRISPR technology to reverse genetic forms of severe obesity in two different mouse models, but without carrying out any genome editing. The technique, called CRISPR activation (CRISPRa), uses the CRISPR guidance system to target a particular gene sequence, but instead of using Cas enzymes as molecular scissors to cut out and repair or replace sequences, the technology amplifies existing gene activity to ramp up protein production.” (read more in GEN, 14 )