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Mixing Genes and Dieting

A study that found that people's genes can determine whether they will lose weight on a low-fat or low-carb diet has made a splash. "Knowing your genotype for low-carb or low-fat diets could help you increase your weight-loss success," Stanford University's Christopher Gardner, a co-author of the study, told the Wall Street Journal. Interleukin, the sponsor of the study and the developer of the test, sells it for $149.

NPR's Shots blog, however, "wanted a second opinion." The University of Maryland's Nanette Steinle says the test is promising but is in its early days."I think it's hopeful that we've uncovered additional understanding of why some people respond to a particular diet better than others, but we're not at a point today to start implementing this in practice," she says, adding that the study had a small sample size — 138 women. Gardner agrees and tells NPR he is planning a larger study.

The Scan

Genome Sequences Reveal Range Mutations in Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

Researchers in Nature Genetics detect somatic mutation variation across iPSCs generated from blood or skin fibroblast cell sources, along with selection for BCOR gene mutations.

Researchers Reprogram Plant Roots With Synthetic Genetic Circuit Strategy

Root gene expression was altered with the help of genetic circuits built around a series of synthetic transcriptional regulators in the Nicotiana benthamiana plant in a Science paper.

Infectious Disease Tracking Study Compares Genome Sequencing Approaches

Researchers in BMC Genomics see advantages for capture-based Illumina sequencing and amplicon-based sequencing on the Nanopore instrument, depending on the situation or samples available.

LINE-1 Linked to Premature Aging Conditions

Researchers report in Science Translational Medicine that the accumulation of LINE-1 RNA contributes to premature aging conditions and that symptoms can be improved by targeting them.