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Going for the Gold

Graduate student Geoffrey von Maltzahn has been using gold nanoparticles to develop new methods to fight cancer. One takes advantage of the porous blood vessels that tumors put out to get gold rod-shaped nanoparticles into tumors. Once there, von Maltzahn shines a near-infrared laser on the patient's skin, above the tumor, to heat up the gold and destroy the malignant tissue. Another method developed by von Maltzahn uses two injections of nanoparticles, the first to attach to tumors and the second wave, covered with anti-cancer agents, to destroy the tumors. Because of this work, von Maltzahn is the winner of this year's Lemelson–MIT Student Prize, reports Scientific American.

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.