11. August 2015 02:29
By Martin Levin
On July 14, H.R. 1599 was reported favorably out of the House Agriculture Committee on a voice vote, and is expected to reach a floor vote within the week. Although titled the “Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act,” this bill actually codifies quarter-century old, agribusiness-friendly practices concerning the safety testing of genetically modified foods. It also preempts all state laws mandating labeling of GMOs without enacting a labeling requirement a... [More]
8. June 2015 21:13
Amazon is in a race against Google to store data on human DNA, seeking both bragging rights in helping scientists make new medical discoveries and market share in a business that may be worth $1 billion a year by 2018. Academic institutions and healthcare companies are picking sides between their cloud computing offerings - Google Genomics or Amazon Web Services - spurring the two to one-up each other as they win high-profile genomics business, according to interviews with researchers,... [More]
4. June 2015 23:26
A closely watched bill by Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Glendale) to strengthen notice requirements for the storage of newborn blood samples passed the California State Assembly by a vote of 55-9. The legislation, AB 170, will ensure parents are fully informed of their rights when it comes to the retention, storage and eventual medical research conducted on their children’s dried blood spot samples. It would further require the destruction of stored samples upon request of a child re... [More]
4. June 2015 23:14
The FBI has notified crime labs across the country that it has discovered errors in data used by forensic scientists in thousands of cases to calculate the chances that DNA found at a crime scene matches a particular person, several people familiar with the issue said.
The bureau has said it believes the errors, which extend to 1999, are unlikely to result in dramatic changes that would affect cases. It has submitted the research findings to support that conclusion for publication in ... [More]
3. June 2015 18:12
Yes, this looks very familiar…
No I had nothing to do with it, I was not consulted or cited, and I’m not surprised.
It isn’t surprising that an ad agency copied an artist’s work with no remuneration or citation.
And it isn’t surprising that an ad agency press release was recycled from one media outlet to the next as “news” without research or problematization of the obvious issues here around surveillance, ge... [More]
2. June 2015 21:17
Seven years ago, Congress prohibited employers and insurers from discriminating against people with genes that increase their risks for costly diseases, but the case that experts believe is the first to go to trial under the law involves something completely different: an effort by an employer to detect employee wrongdoing with genetic sleuthing.
Amy Totenberg, the federal district judge in Atlanta who is hearing the case, called it the mystery of the devious defecator.
28. May 2015 22:20
The Pentagon announced on Wednesday it had mistakenly sent as many as nine samples of live anthrax to labs across the country, and one internationally. Presumably the announcement was made sheepishly; it’s not a great look for the keeper of America’s nuclear arsenal.
A lab in Maryland is the only confirmed recipient of a batch of live samples that was shipped from a Utah army facility known for biological and chemical weapons defense testing. The samples were m... [More]
27. May 2015 23:46
Last week, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) and its National Academy of Medicine (NAM) announced that they will convene an international meeting this fall at which researchers, ethicists, and other experts will discuss the implications of human germline gene-editing technologies in both research and clinical applications.
The White House applauds NAS and NAM for convening this dialogue and fully supports a robust review of the ethical issues associated with using gene-editing tech... [More]
22. May 2015 23:41
“Success in sight: The eyes have it!” Thus the scientific journal Gene Therapy greeted the news, in 2008, that an experimental treatment was restoring vision to 12 people born with a congenital disorder that slowly left them blind. Healthy genes were injected to replace the faulty mutations in the patients’ retinas, allowing an 8-year-old to ride a bike for the first time. A mother finally saw her child play softball. Every patient, the researchers reported, showed &l... [More]
22. May 2015 23:28
IN CALLING THEIR Perspective “A prudent path forward for genomic engineering and germline gene modification” (3 April, p. 36; published online 19 March), D. Baltimore et al. show at once the size of the problem and the modesty of their response to it. CRISPR-Cas9, invented by the ninth author, Jennifer Doudna, allows the alteration of specific DNA in the mammalian genome. The authors say that “CRISPR-Cas9 technology, as well as other genome engineering method... [More]