Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

Viral Hunting

Ian Lipkin at Columbia University is scouring samples to look for viruses, and he has found 400 new ones since 2002, reports Carl Zimmer in The New York Times. "If scientists are lucky, they'll identify one novel virus in their whole life," says Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. "Lipkin really stands out from the crowd." Instead of using microscopes to find viruses or tracking them down through antibodies, Lipkin searches for viral genes. To do so, he and his team developed MassTag PCR, which combines PCR and mass spectrometry to determine what kind of virus they are dealing with and recently, they have begun to adapt genome sequencing tools to their searches. With sequencing tools, the team found a new virus, called Dandenong, that killed three women after they received organs from the same donor.

The Scan

Study Finds Few FDA Post-Market Regulatory Actions Backed by Research, Public Assessments

A Yale University-led team examines in The BMJ safety signals from the US FDA Adverse Event Reporting System and whether they led to regulatory action.

Duke University Team Develops Programmable RNA Tool for Cell Editing

Researchers have developed an RNA-based editing tool that can target specific cells, as they describe in Nature.

Novel Gene Editing Approach for Treating Cystic Fibrosis

Researchers in Science Advances report on their development of a non-nuclease-based gene editing approach they hope to apply to treat cystic fibrosis.

Study Tracks Responses in Patients Pursuing Polygenic Risk Score Profiling

Using interviews, researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics qualitatively assess individuals' motivations for, and experiences with, direct-to-consumer polygenic risk score testing.