Genetics

Why do Humans Procrastinate?

A genetic variant has been found to increase an individual’s tendency to procrastinate, the act of delaying an essential task in favour of easier and less vital ones. Procrastination can harm productivity in both the workplace and everyday life. It can also negatively affect physical and mental health. However, if you are getting frustrated at […]

Plant Mitochondrial DNA Genetically Engineered for the First Time

Scientists have genetically engineered plant mitochondrial DNA for the first time. This advancement could enable a more secure food supply for the future. Low mitochondrial diversity in plants leaves whole species vulnerable to diseases. If all plants are genetically similar, very few individuals will have resistance to certain diseases, which will give a low survival […]

Species Lifespan Predicted by Rate of Telomere Shortening

New research has indicated that a species’ lifespan can be predicted by the rate of telomere shortening but not by the initial telomere length, as previously thought. Telomeres are repetitive sequences of DNA nucleotides found at the end of chromosomes. They protect the chromosome from degradation during cell division. As species age, the length of […]

Genetic Changes that Cause Coral Bleaching Identified

Researchers have identified the genetic changes that cause corals to bleach when ocean temperatures increase. This insight gives researchers the possibility to genetically engineer corals to make them more resistant to bleaching.  At normal temperatures, corals form a symbiotic relationship with microalgae, known as dinoflagellates. The algae provide their photosynthetic products to the coral so […]

Common Cold Virus as a Treatment for Bladder Cancer

A variant of the common cold virus has shown promising trial results as a treatment for bladder cancer. Bladder cancer is the tenth highest incident cancer in the UK and kills approximately 5,300 people a year. Current treatments for bladder cancer mostly have high recurrence rates or dangerous side-effects. 15 non-muscle invasive bladder cancer patients […]

Software Fault Leaves Patients’ Genetic Data Vulnerable to Cyber Attacks

Researchers have found a weakness in software used for genomics data storage, which could leave patients’ information vulnerable to cyber-attacks. The increasing speed and availability of genetic sequencing technologies has enabled personalised medicine to make significant progress over the last few years. Patient’s genetic profiles are considered when choosing chemotherapy treatment and cures are being […]

Genetic Variant Increases Pre-Disposition to Anxiety and Depression

Patients with a certain genetic variant have been found to both be more pre-disposed to anxiety and depression and have lower susceptibility to the usual medication. Although anxiety and depression can be developed due to distressing events or stressful periods in a person’s life, there is increasing evidence that some people are more predisposed to […]

Genetic Test Reduces Risk of Chemotherapy Side-Effects

A new genetic test has been successfully trialled at a hospital in Oxford to help doctors identify patients most at risk of chemotherapy side-effects.  Capecitabine and fluorouracil (5FU) are common chemotherapy drugs for cancers including breast, bowl and stomach. Both drugs act as anti-metabolites and resemble biological molecules found inside cells. When the drug molecules […]

Fleeting Genetic Changes Could Have Lasting Impact

Fleeting genetic changes observed in stem cells as they differentiate could shed light on the origin of certain genetic diseases. Scientists studying stem cell differentiation usually only compare the differences in gene expression between the fully undifferentiated and differentiated cells. However, new research has revealed that the fleeting genetic changes during cell development could have […]

Largest DNA-Mapping Study of a Single US Population Begins

Intermountain Healthcare and deCODE Genetics, a subsidiary of Amgen based in Iceland, have announced a major joint collaboration and study of 500,000 genomes centred around discovering new connections between genetics and human diseases. The study represents the largest US DNA-mapping attempt from a single population.

Inscripta’s CREATE Technology Set to Expand CRISPR’s Potential

Inscripta has presented its scalable platform for benchtop digital CRISPR engineering, described as world first, at the 2019 Synthetic Biology: Engineering, Evolution & Design (SEED) conference. The technology, “CRISPR-enabled trackable genome engineering” or CREATE, is meant to remove certain limitations of CRISPR to allow for more wide-reaching research in the future.

Common Male Ancestor Twice as Ancient as Previously Thought

The last common male ancestor of all humans is far older than previously thought, scientists have found. When the family of Albert Perry, an African-American living in South Carolina, submitted his DNA to commercial genealogy company Family Tree DNA, it was discovered that his Y chromosome was so distinct that his male lineage likely separated from all others around 338,000 years ago.

Real-World Solutions to your Drug Development Problems

The amount of data captured by pharma companies today is fast outpacing best use for it. The ever-evolving scope of the field also means that many senior-level professionals do not fully understand the importance of getting data right in their business, or missing a potential opportunity that their rivals seize. Stemming from Front Line Genomics’ […]