Genomics
Combo of CRISPR, informatics helps uncover genetic regulators of immune cells
A new computational tool that uses CRISPR and multimodal single-cell sequencing data can provide insights into the function and regulation of human genes. The study, published in Nature Genetics on March 1, provides details on the molecular regulation of immune checkpoint inhibitors. Read More
Scientists achieve milestone in animal-free production of biologics
For the first time, scientists have successfully produced sugar-based biologic molecules utilizing bacteria, without the need for animal products. The paper, published in Nature Communications on March 2, describes the production of a common designer polysaccharide, chondroitin sulfate. Read More
AI uncovers the genome's hidden regulatory code
A neural network trained on high-resolution maps of protein-DNA interactions can uncover how these sequences are organized to regulate genes, revealing a hidden regulatory code. Findings from use of the artificial intelligence (AI) model were published in Nature Genetics on February 18. Read More
Proteomics helps researchers pick the best anti-SARS-CoV-2 nanobodies
A new high-throughput proteomics-based strategy to identify tiny antibody fragments -- called nanobodies -- may provide an efficient and effective method for developing therapeutics against the deadly SARS-CoV-2 virus -- including variants. The findings were published in Cell Systems on February 15. Read More
Researchers use modified CRISPR tool to manipulate the epigenome
Bioengineers have developed a new way to engineer the human epigenome (chemical changes in the DNA) using a modified CRISPR-Cas9 system to target and activate proteins in the chromosome. This research, published in Nature Communications on February 9, expands on synthetic genome tools. Read More
New synthetic biology approach may improve delivery of programmable medicines
Programmable medicines that can be controlled by synthetic genetic components are not yet a clinical reality. But synthetic components can now be reconfigured so they don't overwhelm host cells, moving the technology a step closer to clinical reality, according to new research published February 8 in Nature Communications. Read More
Preclinical lung imaging offers effective evaluation of drug candidates
Drug discovery and development are arduous and costly endeavors, with nine in 10 drug candidates failing to gain approval. Preclinical imaging can help pharmaceutical companies more effectively evaluate drug candidates, in particular for respiratory diseases. Read More
Not all genome editing tools are equal: CRISPR vs. TALEN
In recent years, a number of novel genome editing tools have emerged, although not all of these tools are equal in terms of efficiency and accuracy, according to a new study published in Nature Communications on January 27. The study observed different DNA search proteins to identify the specific ways that they find target sequences in the genome. Read More
Designer DNA therapies shown to effectively target cancer stem cells
Using an engineered DNA therapeutic agent to silence transcription factor genes reduced myeloma stem cell abundance and increased the survival of mice bearing human myeloma, according to preclinical study data published in Cell Stem Cell on January 20. The results of the study have prompted the clinical investigation of a therapeutic candidate for the treatment of multiple myeloma. Read More
Development 'cookbooks' could speed up gene therapy
Great strides have been made in the development of gene editing tools in the past decade, but translating the technology into real therapies to treat patients has taken longer than expected. How to accelerate this process was the subject of a panel discussion on January 13 at the Biotech Showcase virtual event. Read More
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