Pop quiz: What’s the difference between DNA, RNA and proteins? If you’re racking your brain to remember your high school science classes, you’re not alone. Molecular biology is complicated business, and teaching core concepts to students is undoubtedly challenging — even in non-pandemic times. In response to this problem, ISB researchers have created a video game that teaches secondary students (grades…
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A rare, transmissible tumor has brought the iconic Tasmanian devil to the brink of extinction, but new research by scientists at Washington State University and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle indicates hope for the animals’ survival and possibly new treatment for human cancers. The study, published in Genetics on Aug. 1, found a single genetic mutation that leads to…
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When the Damage Is Done: Injury and Repair in Thymus Function

Even though the thymus is exquisitely sensitive to acute insults like infection, shock, or common cancer therapies such as cytoreductive chemo- or radiation-therapy, it also has a remarkable capacity for repair. This phenomenon of endogenous thymic regeneration has been known for longer even than its primary function to generate T cells, however, the underlying mechanisms controlling the process have been…
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The McLaughlin Lab Prioritizes Curiosity, Putting Basic Science First

PNRI scientists ask questions, pursue their curiosity, and practice basic, fundamental science. Rick McLaughlin, PhD and his lab are committed to asking, and chasing, the questions needed to find new solutions to human health. “There’s this connection between that basic science we’re thinking about, and how we can imagine right? That imagined word is an important word. How we can imagine these…
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Seattle Genetics, Inc. (Nasdaq:SGEN) today announced U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of GlaxoSmithKline’s (GSK) BLENREP™ (belantamab mafodotin-blmf), an antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) targeting B-cell maturation antigen (BCMA) that utilizes Seattle Genetics’ proprietary technology. BLENREP was developed and will be commercialized by GSK. The approval triggers a $20 million milestone payment and entitles Seattle Genetics to royalties on BLENREP product…
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A Seattle nonprofit says early results are positive on a clinical trial for immunotherapy on COVID patients. Dr. Corey Casper is the CEO of the Infectious Disease Research Institute, which started the trial earlier this year, and says the initial results are “promising.” “The goal is to administer this immune therapy to patients who are not yet needing that intensive…
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Cancer Targeted Technology (CTT), a privately-held Seattle-based biotechnology company, announced that the NIH awarded CTT $1.44M on the second year of a competitive Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase IIB grant. The three year grant commenced in 2019 and totals $3.3M and this second year of funding supports the current CTT1403 clinical trial. New prostate cancer drug, CTT1403, gets additional…
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Color-Coding Technology Reveals New Insights about Stem Cell Biology

Several years ago, Danny El-Nachef was given a task. His mission: create a tool to observe and track  how stem cells behaved during the earliest stages of human heart development. At the time, El-Nachef was a postdoc in the Davis and Sniadecki Labs in the Institute for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine (ISCRM) and a member of an interdisciplinary research…
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Researchers have identified five immune response markers which, collectively created “antibody signatures” that could correctly classify both COVID-19 patients who recovered and those who did not survive the disease. Their study is published in the Cell Press journal Immunity.  The senior authors are Galit Alter, group leaded at the Ragon Institute of Massachusetts General Hospital, MIT and Harvard, and professor of medicine…
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A tumor that jumps from host to host. A tumor that evolves to slow itself down. Both defy expectations — and both are the same tumor. Rare contagious tumors have brought Tasmanian devils to the brink of extinction, but new work from scientists at Washington State University and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center could shed light on its weaknesses. The study,…
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