Latest Expert Analysis
GENeS publishes comments from researchers on scientific developments and breaking news. Expert analyses of peer-reviewed studies are a complementary resource to standard press releases, providing background, scientific context, contacts and leads for stories, while expert reactions to breaking news feed into rolling coverage.
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Researchers have assessed the threat of a SARS-like virus, found naturally in bats, by ‘reverse engineering’ the virus in the lab. The authors, found that human airway cells were easily infected in the lab and conclude that the virus, WIV1 poses a threat to emerge as a human disease. Continue reading
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration published a notice that a field trial of genetically engineered mosquitoes in the Florida Keys would not harm humans or the environment. Continue reading
Not a one-way street: Antibiotic resistance genes found on cattle farms suggest spread from humans to livestock
The first study to track antibiotic resistance all the way through the intensive beef production process found genes conferring resistance to ‘last resort’ antibiotics which are not used in the livestock industry. Continue reading
New research finds the Zika virus can infect neural cells crucial for brain development in embryos, suggesting a potential biological explanation for the cases of microcephaly seen in Latin America during the Zika outbreak. Continue reading
Researchers have coaxed mouse embryonic stem cells into sperm-like cells which were then used to create fertile offspring. The authors, who describe their technique in Cell Stem Cell, say it could hold “tremendous promise” for treating male infertility in humans. Continue reading
The faulty activity of genes controlling the development of white matter in the brain may underlie cognitive symptoms of people with Down syndrome, according to a study in Neuron. The researchers suggest their results could open up new possibilities for treatment. Continue reading
USDA has decided that it will not regulate a mushroom which has been gene-edited to prevent browning. The mushroom, developed by Yinong Yang at Penn State, is the first crop modified using CRISPR-Cas9 that USDA has said is not subject to regulation. Continue reading
Researchers have begun to unpick how the remnants of Neanderthal DNA resulting from ancient interbreeding might impact the physical and psychiatric health of modern humans. Continue reading
As the Zika outbreak continues in the Americas, methods of controlling the mosquitoes that spread the virus by using genetic engineering have gained attention. But how realistic is it for these new technologies to be deployed on a large scale? Continue reading
A panel of scientists and ethicists have said the US should allow clinical research into preventing genetic diseases by mitochondrial replacement, a technique which involves substituting the faulty mitochondria in a mother’s eggs with healthy mitochondria from a donor. Continue reading