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Category: Science

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I became so overwhelmed by covering COVID-19 that I no longer had time to post individual stories. So here are links to my latest stories…

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“Yevgenievna” and her husband in their apartment. She has been deaf since birth and her husband has limited hearing.  She is considering allowing an experiment by Rebrikov to edit gene’s in her offspring’s embryo that may help avoid hearing loss.  Credit: Sergey Ponomarev

Deaf couple may edit embryo’s DNA to correct hearing mutation

This story was supported by the Pulitzer Center. On a lightly snowing Sunday evening, a potential participant in Denis Rebrikov’s controversial plans to create gene-edited babies meets…

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Microbiome. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of bacteria cultured from a fingertip. There are around 1000 species of bacteria from 19 phyla found on human skin. Skin flora is usually non-pathogenic, and either commensal (not harmful to their host) or mutualistic (offer a benefit). One benefit bacteria can offer is preventing transient pathogenic organisms from colonizing the skin surface, either by competing for nutrients, secreting chemicals against them, or stimulating the skin's immune system. However, resident microbes can cause skin diseases and enter the blood system, creating life-threatening diseases, particularly in immunosuppressed people. Magnification: x3000 when printed at 10cm wide.

New ‘reverse genomics’ method brings previously hidden bacteria to life

In the past decade, increasingly powerful genetic techniques have found hordes of microbial DNA in everything from the human gut to a scoop of seawater.…

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