Futurology

CRISPR kills HIV and eats Zika 'like Pac-man'. Its next target? Cancer

CRISPR kills HIV and eats Zika 'like Pac-man'. Its next target? Cancer

Radiolab did two episodes on CRISPR. Definitely worth the time to listen to both.

this Kurzgesagt video

People need to chill. Yes, CRISPR is a revolutionary technology, but as a scientist who works with Cas9, I can tell you that we're far from being able to "kill HIV" and "eat Zika 'like Pac-man'". And there are several reasons why we're far from CRISPR-based cancer treatments, too.

(to name two: (1) we don't have a good way to make targeted edits in tumor cells specifically using CRISPR, so we would have to fix mutations at the embryo stage, leaving susceptibility to mutations arising during life; (2) most cancers are caused by many mutations, so it's currently unfeasible to remove each one of these mutations using uniquely-guided Cas9 proteins.)

EDIT: Wanted to add one more thing - equally annoying as this clickbaity journalism is the irresponsible fearmongering about CRISPR. Let's avoid talking about CRISPR genocides when we literally haven't even successfully edited an embryo

EDIT 2: This comment has gotten much more reception than expected; people seem to have many questions about CRISPR as a technology and the current state of the field. To that end I would definitely recommend watching , but if there are still questions I'd love to answer them. Lots of interesting discussion going on here!

Kurzgesagt – In a Nutshell

did a video on CRISPR

also a great source of existential dread

In ‘Enormous Success,’ Scientists Tie 52 Genes to Human Intelligence

In ‘Enormous Success,’ Scientists Tie 52 Genes to Human Intelligence

Designer babies coming soon.

I expect to see a Bell Curve like controversy behind things like this though.

Title is a bit sensationalist, FTA:

These genes do not determine intelligence, however. Their combined influence is minuscule, the researchers said, suggesting that thousands more are likely to be involved and still await discovery. Just as important, intelligence is profoundly shaped by the environment.

Sure, a minuscule effect, but the title seems to imply if you modify these genes you'll suddenly have Einstein babies.

Until we find the genes for sociopathy, designer babies with boosted intelligence are a bad choice.

If you read the article you'll find that scientists were able to identify 52 genes that correlated with intelligence but that thousands more are likely involved and remain to be discovered. The 52 that were found account for less than 1-point difference in mean IQ across populations.

Ketamine finds market as costly off-label option to treat mental disorders - As research shows that the hallucinogen is a potentially powerful treatment for intractable mental disorders, and academics continue to debate its safety, private clinics across the country offer the drug to patients now.

Ketamine finds market as costly off-label option to treat mental disorders - As research shows that the hallucinogen is a potentially powerful treatment for intractable mental disorders, and academics continue to debate its safety, private clinics across the country offer the drug to patients now.
Ketamine finds market as costly off-label option to treat mental disorders - As research shows th...

My mother has had depression that has been non responsive to other treatments her entire adult life.

She recently, at the recommendation of her psychiatrist, sought out a ketamine clinic. Her response to K treatment was drastic and immediate.

She is, for the first time in her life, free from depression.

Just came to say that Ketamine is a dissociative and not a hallucinogen.

Edit: Apparently I'm wrong and there's some ambiguity in classifying drugs (TIL). If Ketamine is a hallucinogen, then so is meth, caffeine, marijuana, and alcohol.

It's highly immoral how much ketamine is being put at a disadvantage. The patent system ensures that people are pressured not to use the very regimen that is most likely to work.

To my knowledge, ketamine is still not indicated in depression (MDD) by the FDA, and no one will pay to have it indicated for depression. This directly protects the drug companies that produce drugs far less effective, if not outright ineffective, for the indication of depression.

Yeah, and it's expensive to go the clinic route. The one near me recommends multiple treatments in one week if the first one appears to have a benefit.

All out of pocket and 1000 a session. So 8000 out of pocket. I would desperately like to cure what ails me. Can't afford that, no way, no how.

Advertisement

A team of MIT researchers has designed a breathable workout suit with ventilating flaps that open and close in response to an athlete’s body heat and sweat. These flaps are lined with live microbial cells that shrink and expand in response to changes in humidity.

A team of MIT researchers has designed a breathable workout suit with ventilating flaps that open and close in response to an athlete’s body heat and sweat. These flaps are lined with live microbial cells that shrink and expand in response to changes in humidity.
A team of MIT researchers has designed a breathable workout suit with ventilating flaps that open...

Ah yes, okay, it's amazing and all that, but the important question is: does it come in psychedelic neon colours?

waiting for the day we get airconditioned suits so i can go outside in 90 degree weather and feel like it's 70.

This plan works in tandem with modern technologies, too. If you do it long enough in public, you'll eventually be placed in the back of an air conditioned squad car.

Go outside naked. You'll find that your body seats the perfect amount to regulate your body temperature. You will be cool and dry.

Thanks to Genetic Testing, Everyone Could Soon Have a Pre-Existing Condition

Thanks to Genetic Testing, Everyone Could Soon Have a Pre-Existing Condition
Thanks to Genetic Testing, Everyone Could Soon Have a Pre-Existing Condition

They do know what the point of insurance is, to the insurees, right?

It's that we all pay a little bit, so that those who do get sick can get treatment when they get sick.

Trying to cut out everyone who does get sick is the antithesis of the entire notion.

A healthcare system that works like that is just a non-starter, the US needs to go back to the drawing board. I'd suggest single payer.

i have an idea, lets make a new type of insurance, lets call it illness insurance, so it doesn't get grouped up with health insurance, that basically does everything health insurance does without being total shit at it.

Everyone living in the U.S.

The very same technology will likely make our single payer care even better!

The point of insurance is for the insurer to make a lot of profit.

They do this the same way a casino does, by skewing the odds in their favour.

Scientists in Canada are using marijuana to reduce crack cocaine use - "data for this study, which was recently presented at the Harm Reduction Conference in Montreal, were drawn from three open and ongoing prospective cohorts of more than 2,000 people"

Scientists in Canada are using marijuana to reduce crack cocaine use - "data for this study, which was recently presented at the Harm Reduction Conference in Montreal, were drawn from three open and ongoing prospective cohorts of more than 2,000 people"
Scientists in Canada are using marijuana to reduce crack cocaine use - "data for this study, whic...

Here's a fundamental truth: people like getting fucked up. If you give them a less harmful way to get fucked up and make sure it doesn't get them into trouble, most of them will tend to avoid the ways of getting fucked up that cause actual harm.

If I didn't have to fear a drug test and ultimately losing my job I'd smoke pot and never touch alcohol again. For health reasons. It sucks that there's a safer, healthier option but we're encouraged to take the more self destructive, dangerous path.

As a Canadian, this is what I have already done. Weed isn't legal here yet, but it will be soon, and it's absolutely everywhere. I have basically stopped drinking alcohol except the odd beer, and prefer to just have a toke now and again.

So mary jane is a reverse gateway drug.. everything is backwards! The food pyramid and now this?

What a time to be alive man

Without action on antibiotics, medicine will return to the dark ages - Continued overprescribing and abuse could lead to more people dying of resistant infections than cancer. Only global cooperation can solve the problem

Without action on antibiotics, medicine will return to the dark ages - Continued overprescribing ...

Only global cooperation can solve the problem

We are screwd then.

Edit: Not my proudest top comment but at least we all agree on something.

although their use is being phased out, antibiotic use in livestock production contributes WAY more to resistance than human use.

From Wikipedia: In 2011, a total of 13.6 million kilograms of antimicrobials were sold for use in food-producing animals in the United States,[32] which represents 80% of all antibiotics sold or distributed in the United States.[33] Of the antibiotics given to animals from 2009 through 2013, just above 60% distributed for food animal use are "medically-important" drugs, that are also used in humans.

China produces and consumes the most antibiotics of all countries.[37]

Antibiotic use has been measured by checking the water near factory farms in China.[38][39] Measurements have also been taken from animal dung.[40]

Half of the antibiotics manufactured in China are used in the production of livestock.[41]

It was calculated that 38.5 million kg (or 84.9 million lbs) of antibiotics were used in China's swine and poultry production in 2012.[42]

Do you remember the hole in the ozone layer?

The entire planet got their shit together and quit using CFC's at a downright remarkable clip.

I don't even think there's been a time where the world came together for the greater good... Ever. Especially when it was this counter-intuitive.

India cancelling huge coal power station because it wants to focus on renewable energy

India cancelling huge coal power station because it wants to focus on renewable energy

India keeps adjusting its plans away from coal. In the last two years, I have seen India go from 8 cents per kilowatt for solar all the way down to 4 cents.

Additionally, the price of solar will drop even further. I think by 2022, solar will be in the 2 cent range for the best locations. India has the cheap labor and the government dedicated to 100 gigawatts by 2022. The land is provided for free. The last piece of the puzzle was low-cost financing. India is viewed as more of risk because customers often do not pay. However, that situation is improving.

While they still have plans for coal, I think those will change. It has been like changing the course of a large ship. The course takes time to change. The coal interests have been fighting this change, but the economics are no longer in their favor.

I think there will be many stranded coal plants. The cost of batteries and wind have so much further to drop in India as well. Europe has dropped the price of offshore wind so much, it may become a factor for India too. http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/energy/power/india-to-get-electricity-from-offshore-...

They are looking at banning sells of gasoline cars by 2030. That sends a strong signal to EV manufacturers. I think the market will easily help them achieve this goal. The market may even accelerate all the goals.

Meanwhile, Adani, an Indian multinational conglomerate is planning to mine the fuck out of Australia for coal.

Meanwhile Americans are trying to bring back coal jobs. Facepalm

It's really hypocritical of western countries to complain about India using coal while they at the same time have ten times the amount of carbon emissions per capita. Also, unlike India most of those countries can actually afford renewable energy. Here India us trying to be more green and all you can do is complain? Take a look at your own country before shitting on other countries accomplishments.

Edit: Numbers of ta9876543205 is correct, it's ten times not twice

A Bioengineered 'Pancreas' Has Ended One Diabetic's Need For Insulin

A Bioengineered 'Pancreas' Has Ended One Diabetic's Need For Insulin

Cool. But as a T1D, and reading the article, headlines like these really are a downer. Because there's no fundamental cure and people like to assume there is. In the articles case it states she had an unusual type of diabetes, and good for her for getting cured. But it's a long road to go for the rest of us.

Biomedical engineer here. Dont believe these bioengineers, were cooler! We can make you a synthetic one with led lights!

Edit: wr to we

Same here fella, I've heard so much about potential cures and such, but none of it delivers. Gets my hopes up and then they just fall down again 😔

Can't lose all hope though man, just keep living your life and managing as best you can

Volvo says no more diesel engines, the future is electric

Volvo says no more diesel engines, the future is electric

So, even Volvo understood that their combustion vehicles are destroying our planet.

Or, maybee not!

The product manager I talked to two years ago said, speaking about Tesla, that "Volvo would move into electric engines when the market was ready". At that time they preferred to make as much money as possible on large diesel SUVs.

when the market was ready

Also known as "Oh no, the market figured out we were lying!"

As much as I love the idea of electric engines, the market drives supply. I am ecstatic that it's in the better direction, but that's unfortunately how it works sometimes.

Good for him, for seeing the future and responding appropriately.

However, I think the more important question is, WTF is that thing growing from his earlobe?

Try one of these subthreads