Mireven

Australian microRNA drug firm MiReven announced this week the publication of in vitro data validating the role of miR-7-5p in cancer.

Though not as advanced a therapeutic technology as its RNAi cousin, microRNA received a lot of positive attention from the investment community in 2012, with the top companies in the space pulling in nearly $150 million in financing dollars over the past year.

As it awaits the publication of in vitro data from its lead cancer program, Australian microRNA drugs startup MirEven has moved into proof-of-concept animal studies to test various oligo chemistries and delivery technologies, a company executive said this week.

Australian microRNA drug developer Mireven said last week that it has received an additional A$500,000 ($511,000) from early-stage investment group Medical Research Commercialization Fund, bringing the total investment MRCF has made in the company to A$1.1 million.

Silence Therapeutics this week announced that it has struck a deal under which its delivery technologies will be evaluated by Australian microRNA drug developer Mireven for use with its therapeutic candidates.

Though many details have yet to be worked out, the draft deal for the UK's withdrawal from the EU is giving researchers some hints for what they can expect, Nature News says.

DNA testing has solved a 100-year-old mystery contained in the skull and teeth samples of a now-extinct monkey that once inhabited Jamaica, Gizmodo reports.

As the UN ponders a ban on gene drives, one malaria researcher says there are less dramatic ways to fight the disease in Africa than unleashing GM mosquitoes on a whole continent.

In Nature this week: an improved reference genome of the Aedes aegypti mosquito, genomes of four species of truffles, and more.