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Team Finds Apparent Antidote to Death Cap Mushroom Toxin

In a paper in Nature Communications, a team from Sun Yat-sen University and other centers in China and Australia uncover an inhibitor for a poisonous compound found in the Amanita phalloides death cap mushroom. The investigators identified a compound called indocyanine green (ICG) — a fluorescent iodide dye that has been used diagnostically for decades — that inhibits the STT3B catalytic enzyme behind alpha-amanitin toxicity with a CRISPR screen, drug screening experiments using thousands of compounds, and follow-up functional validation experiments in cell lines, organoids, and mouse models. "Together, by combining a genome-wide CRISPR screen for alpha-amanitin toxicity with an in silico drug screen and functional validation in vivo, our study highlights ICG as a STT3B inhibitor against the mushroom toxin," they report.

The Scan

ChatGPT Does As Well As Humans Answering Genetics Questions, Study Finds

Researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics had ChatGPT answer genetics-related questions, finding it was about 68 percent accurate, but sometimes gave different answers to the same question.

Sequencing Analysis Examines Gene Regulatory Networks of Honeybee Soldier, Forager Brains

Researchers in Nature Ecology & Evolution find gene regulatory network differences between soldiers and foragers, suggesting bees can take on either role.

Analysis of Ashkenazi Jewish Cohort Uncovers New Genetic Loci Linked to Alzheimer's Disease

The study in Alzheimer's & Dementia highlighted known genes, but also novel ones with biological ties to Alzheimer's disease.

Tara Pacific Expedition Project Team Finds High Diversity Within Coral Reef Microbiome

In papers appearing in Nature Communications and elsewhere, the team reports on findings from the two-year excursion examining coral reefs.