Gene therapy for the win, CRISPr with RNA, and growing telomeres without gene hacking.

The past couple of weeks have brought with them some pretty interesting advances in the field of genetic engineering. So, let's get into it.

The first is, as far as anybody can tell, a working genetic therapy regimen for SCID, or severe combined immunodeficiency syndrome. SCID has long been colloquially referred to as "bubble boy syndrome" after David Vetter was born in 1971.ev with the condition and a movie was released about his life in 1976.ev, due to the fact that children born with the condition utterly lack a functional immune system; the slightest illness is likely to …

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Regeneration of living tissue in situ and a surprising observation in antisenescence.

Ordinarily if something happens that causes a chunk of your body to be removed (like, say, a shark bite) there isn't a whole lot that can be done to fill it back in. Scar tissue will form over the wound and skin will eventually cover over it, but that doesn't cause lost muscle and bone to come back. It's kind of scary, when you think about it - what's lost is lost. But that may not be the caes for much longer. A research team active in the field of regenerative medicine at the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine at the …

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Just when you thought biotech couldn't get any more fascinating.

Biology and medicine have long known that more advanced forms of life emit various forms of energy as they go about their business. Mammals emit heat as a byproduct of their metabolisms, and the electrical activity of the musculature, cardiopulmonary, and central nervous systems may be picked up by sensitive instruments and used for diagnostic purposes. Recently, researchers in Japan have discovered that human bodies also emit light in the visble spectrum, albeit in a fashion that most sensors cannot detect. In fact, most lifeforms emit visible light in some fashion though the mechanism behind it isn’t understood. This …

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Nanofibres used to assist in nerve regeneration.

Neurologists at Northwestern University have made a minor breakthrough in the field of nerve regeneration: They've developed a form of self-assembling nanofibre that can be used by damaged nerve cells to stitch themselves back together. The process involves a solution of molecules (the names of the compounds involved were not included in this article) that, under the correct circumstances, will arrange themselves into molecular-sized tubes that act as repair scaffolds for injured nerve cells in the spinal cords of mice. Ordinarily, when nerves are damaged, scar tissue develops at the injury sites and precludes rejoining the ends in any fashion …

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The map is not the territory, but this one folds up the same way.

Researchers from the University of Nevada and IBM's Almaden Research Lab have used the BlueGene L supercomputer to run a heretofore unprecedented simulation of about one-half of a mouse's brain. It's not easy to keep an organic brain going outside of a living body so they did the next best thing, which was write a program that emulates the organic brain as closely as they could. This isn't as easy as it sounds because neural networks more advanced than those of worms have so many interacting factors that taking them all into account is a gargantuan task. It is also …

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