‘They Will Be Studied for the Rest of Their Lives.’ How China’s Gene-Edited Twins Could Be Forever Changed By Controversial CRISPR Work

For now, they’re known as Lulu and Nana, pseudonyms that are meant to give them some amount of anonymity amid the international uproar over their birth. As the first babies born after their genomes were edited (while they were embryos, by the genetics tool CRISPR) the twin girls, born in Shenzhen, China are the subject of scientific and public scrutiny that will only escalate as they get older. He Jiankui, a professor at the Southern University of Science and Technology, stunned the world when he claimed, both in a video posted by his lab and in an interview with a journalist, that he used CRISPR to disable a gene involved in helping HIV to enter healthy cells. By doing so, he gave the resulting edited embryos, including the twin girls, resistance to the virus. Doing so means He violated current guidelines prohibiting using CRISPR on human embryos for pregnancy. For now, He’s claims are only claims, since he has not published his work in a scientific journal for others to review and validate. While he did present his findings at a conference a few days after his YouTube announcement, researchers can only take the data at face value. He says he plans to publish the data, but now that the report has been released to the public, it’s difficult to predict which journals would accept the manuscript. The Chinese researcher’s university denied knowledge of his experiment and said that He has been on leave since last February. Chinese authorities have now su...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized crispr Genetics healthytime onetime Source Type: news

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Zika virus infection during pregnancy can cause microcephaly and other severe birth defects. The CDC Zika MAC-ELISA (IgM antibody capture enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) currently used for diagnosis detects antibodies produced to fight a Zika virus infection. However, reactivity of flavivirus antibodies (from exposure to other mosquito-borne infections such as dengue or West Nile virus) can complicate the interpretation of these results.CDC and partner researchers have developed six monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) from hybridoma technology with high sensitivity to the Zika virus (ZIKV) pre-membrane/envelope (ENV) protein a...
Source: NIH OTT Licensing Opportunities - Category: Research Authors: Source Type: research
Keeton Krause, Francine Azouz, Eileen Nakano, Vivek R. Nerurkar, Mukesh Kumar
Source: Frontiers in Microbiology - Category: Microbiology Source Type: research
Over the past two decades, West Nile virus has become the most common arbovirus in North America, leading to several outbreaks and infecting thousands of people. Mosquitos help transmit the virus in the majority of cases, but transmission occurs via blood transfusions, organ transplantation, and possibly pregnancy and breastfeeding. While most infected patients experience mild to no symptoms, thousands of West Nile virus-associated neuroinvasive cases have been reported in the United States, with over 700 cases occurring in children from 2003 to 2016.
Source: Pediatric Neurology - Category: Neurology Authors: Source Type: research
TUESDAY, Aug. 14, 2018 -- Multiple reports of Zika virus and West Nile virus are being investigated by Alabama health officials. People can get Zika virus from mosquito bites, sex, and blood transfusions, and a pregnant woman can pass it to her...
Source: Drugs.com - Pharma News - Category: Pharmaceuticals Source Type: news
Sure, itchy bug bites are a nuisance. But for those living in parts of the country where mosquito or tick-borne illnesses are common—and these days, that’s most of us—bug-repellent sprays and liquids are an important safeguard against Lyme disease, West Nile virus and other serious health conditions. The annual number of people sickened by mosquitos or tick bites has more than tripled since 2004, according to the CDC. The World Health Organization has concluded that climate change is a likely contributor to these increases, which are predicted to continue as warmer global temperatures expand the habitats ...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized healthytime Research Source Type: news
LITFL • Life in the Fast Lane Medical Blog LITFL • Life in the Fast Lane Medical Blog - Emergency medicine and critical care medical education blog aka Tropical Travel Trouble 010 Peer Reviewer: Dr Jennifer Ho, ID physician QLD, Australia You are an ED doc working in Perth over schoolies week. An 18 yo man comes into ED complaining of fever, rash a “cracking headache” and body aches. He has just hopped off the plane from Bali where he spent the last 2 weeks partying, boozing and running amok. He got bitten by “loads” of mosquitoes because he forgot to take insect repellent. On e...
Source: Life in the Fast Lane - Category: Emergency Medicine Authors: Tags: Clinical Cases Tropical Medicine arthralgia dengue fever rash Source Type: blogs
(Washington University School of Medicine) Two viruses closely related to Zika -- West Nile and Powassan -- can spread from an infected pregnant mouse to her fetuses, causing brain damage and fetal death, according to a new study from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The findings suggest that Zika may not be unique in its ability to cause miscarriages and birth defects.
Source: EurekAlert! - Infectious and Emerging Diseases - Category: Infectious Diseases Source Type: news
Although Zika virus (ZIKV) infection in pregnant women can cause placental damage, intrauterine growth restriction, microcephaly, and fetal demise, these disease manifestations only became apparent in the context of a large epidemic in the Americas. We hypothesized that ZIKV is not unique among arboviruses in its ability to cause congenital infection. To evaluate this, we tested the capacity of four emerging arboviruses [West Nile virus (WNV), Powassan virus (POWV), chikungunya virus (CHIKV), and Mayaro virus (MAYV)] from related (flavivirus) and unrelated (alphavirus) genera to infect the placenta and fetus in immunocompe...
Source: Science Translational Medicine - Category: Biomedical Science Authors: Tags: Research Articles Source Type: research
The Zika virus (ZIKV) can be passed from a pregnant woman to her fetus. Resulting infection by this virus can cause early miscarriage and a pattern of severe birth defects in fetuses and infants. Therefore, a rapid diagnostic assay that can be performed throughout pregnancy in a clinical setting is vital for prenatal care of women living in areas where this virus may be transmitted.CDC has developed a RT-LAMP assay for the rapid screening of ZIKV RNA from urine and serum. As few as 10 copies of ZIKV RNA per microliter can be detected using this assay, showing that it is highly sensitive. It was also shown to be highly spec...
Source: NIH OTT Licensing Opportunities - Category: Research Authors: Source Type: research
AbstractZika virus infections are an emerging problem, with the virus being primarily transmitted to humans via the bite ofAedes mosquito. Infection with the Zika virus may be difficult to distinguish from other viral infections, such as dengue, yellow fever and West Nile virus infections. The predominant feature of Zika virus infection is an erythematous maculopapular rash  ± a low-grade fever. Although the symptoms of Zika virus infection are generally mild in adults, Zika virus infection during pregnancy is associated with severe consequences to the fetus, including fetal death and microencephaly. The m...
Source: Drugs and Therapy Perspectives - Category: Drugs & Pharmacology Source Type: research
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