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Sign of Concussion in Saliva

Researchers are developing a saliva-based test for concussions, the Washington Post reports.

It notes that concussions are currently diagnosed by gauging people's symptoms, behavior, and, sometimes imaging, but that there is no objective test. But researchers from the University of Birmingham in the UK are working on a test that detects small non-coding RNAs.

As they report in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, the Birmingham-led team collected saliva samples from rugby players before the start of their season and during head injury assessments. By analyzing samples from players with confirmed concussions by head injury assessments and those without, the researchers homed in on a panel of 14 scRNA that could differentiate the groups.

"What's exciting about this is we not only found a very accurate way of identifying brain trauma, but also we found it in saliva, which is not invasive," co-author Antonio Belli tells the Post.

The Post adds that the test currently takes about one day, but that the researchers are working on making it able to be used on the sidelines of a sporting event. The researchers additionally note there that more work focused on women is needed, as this analysis included only men and as women are thought to experience concussions differently than men.

The Scan

More Boosters for US

Following US Food and Drug Administration authorization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has endorsed booster doses of the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, the Washington Post writes.

From a Pig

A genetically modified pig kidney was transplanted into a human without triggering an immune response, Reuters reports.

For Privacy's Sake

Wired reports that more US states are passing genetic privacy laws.

Science Paper on How Poaching Drove Evolution in African Elephants

In Science this week: poaching has led to the rapid evolution of tuskless African elephants.