Genetic Defects

The issues around the use of human foetal tissue

Based on the furore currently engulfing the US, you might imagine that the use of foetal tissue is illegal. But in fact the collection and use of cells obtained from a human foetus following miscarriage or abortion has a ...

Aug 17, 2015
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Neurons' broken machinery piles up in ALS

A healthy motor neuron needs to transport its damaged components from the nerve-muscle connection all the way back to the cell body in the spinal cord. If it cannot, the defective components pile up and the cell becomes sick ...

Aug 12, 2015
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Strange circular DNA may offer new way to detect cancers

Strange rings of DNA that exist outside chromosomes are distinct to the cell types that mistakenly produced them, researchers have discovered. The finding raises the tantalizing possibility that the rings could be used as ...

Jul 30, 2015
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How to become a T follicular helper cell

Follicular helper Tcells (TFH cells), a rare type of immune cell that is essential for inducing a strong and lasting antibody response to viruses and other microbes, have garnered intense interest in recent years but the ...

Jul 30, 2015
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A genetic disorder is an illness caused by abnormalities in genes or chromosomes, especially a condition that is present from before birth. Most genetic disorders are quite rare and affect one person in every several thousands or millions.

A genetic disorder may or may not be a heritable disorder. Some genetic disorders are passed down from the parents' genes, but others are always or almost always caused by new mutations or changes to the DNA. In other cases, the same disease, such as some forms of cancer, may be caused by an inherited genetic condition in some people, by new mutations in other people, and by non-genetic causes in still other people.

Some types of recessive gene disorders confer an advantage in certain environments when only one copy of the gene is present.

This text uses material from Wikipedia licensed under CC BY-SA

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New 'Tissue Velcro' could help repair damaged hearts

Engineers at the University of Toronto just made assembling functional heart tissue as easy as fastening your shoes. The team has created a biocompatible scaffold that allows sheets of beating heart cells to snap together ...

Closing the loop with optogenetics

An engineering example of closed-loop control is a simple thermostat used to maintain a steady temperature in the home. Without it, heating or air conditioning would run without reacting to changes in outside conditions, ...