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Two Ways of Doing Things


The charity Cancer Research UK recently announced that it is partnering with the UK's Department of Health to genetically test the tumors of 9,000 newly diagnosed patients. The idea being, in part, to test different drugs on different cancers and find the best treatments for each. Though the undertaking is still in the early stages, Jimmy Daruwala at the PredictER News blog asks whether personalizing cancer treatment on a national scale is even possible. He says he's concerned about the privacy of patients' health data. The American Cancer Society, though, is planning a study which will follow 300,000 people with no personal history of cancer in order to understand how environmental factors and lifestyle work with genetics to cause cancer or protect people from cancer. "Unlike the UK study, the ACS study seeks to prevent cancer rather than treat it," Durawala says. "The study will collect blood samples, waist measurements, and surveys from study participants. Research subjects derive no direct benefits from the study compared to the UK study; however, ethically speaking the study's website cites specific measures indicated to ensure privacy."

The Scan

Myotonic Dystrophy Repeat Detected in Family Genome Sequencing Analysis

While sequencing individuals from a multi-generation family, researchers identified a myotonic dystrophy type 2-related short tandem repeat in the European Journal of Human Genetics.

TB Resistance Insights Gleaned From Genome Sequence, Antimicrobial Response Assays

Researchers in PLOS Biology explore M. tuberculosis resistance with a combination of sequencing and assays looking at the minimum inhibitory concentrations of 13 drugs.

Mendelian Disease Genes Prioritized Using Tissue-Specific Expression Clues

Mendelian gene candidates could be flagged for further functional analyses based on tissue-specific transcriptome and proteome profiles, a new Journal of Human Genetics paper says.

Single-Cell Sequencing Points to Embryo Mosaicism

Mosaicism may affect preimplantation genetic tests for aneuploidy, a single-cell sequencing-based analysis of almost three dozen embryos in PLOS Genetics finds.