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A GWAS for Gout

Researchers led by Caroline Fox report in The Lancet that they've found three genes associated with gout. In genome-wide association studies of 7,699 Framingham study participants and 4,148 Rotterdam cohort study participants, the researchers looked for genes associated with serum uric acid. The SNPs identified from that study were then confirmed in both black and white Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities participants. Having all three gene variants -- SCLA29, ABCG2, and SLC17A3, which are thought to be involved in urate transport -- can increase the risk for gout by 40-fold, says a Health Day story. Fox tells them that these genes "can potentially be used as novel drug targets."

The Scan

Pig Organ Transplants Considered

The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Food and Drug Administration may soon allow clinical trials that involve transplanting pig organs into humans.

'Poo-Bank' Proposal

Harvard Medical School researchers suggest people should bank stool samples when they are young to transplant when they later develop age-related diseases.

Spurred to Develop Again

New Scientist reports that researchers may have uncovered why about 60 percent of in vitro fertilization embryos stop developing.

Science Papers Examine Breast Milk Cell Populations, Cerebral Cortex Cellular Diversity, Micronesia Population History

In Science this week: unique cell populations found within breast milk, 100 transcriptionally distinct cell populations uncovered in the cerebral cortex, and more.