Flu season is here, and everyone should be thinking about how to stay healthy as the risk of getting the flu gets higher. Last flu season, our region experienced two waves of flu causing hospitalizations and severe illness for thousands of local residents. This year, the Seattle Flu Study is inviting the Seattle community to join them in finding new…
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For years, leukemia doctors have been plagued by a toxic trade-off: A bull’s-eye for certain cancer-killing drugs also appears on some normal blood stem cells. Hitting the mark means harming healthy and diseased cells alike. Scientists at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center want to get rid of that trade-off altogether. Their strategy: remove the bull’s-eye from normal cells while leaving…
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The authors report on a two-step immunization scheme that leads to the maturation of VRC01-like antibodies capable of accommodating the N276 glycan and displaying autologous tier 2 neutralizing activities. The study provides information that is critical for the upcoming Phase I clinical trial of one of the Stamatatos lab’s HIV vaccine immunogens. The trial will be conducted by the HIV Vaccine Trials Network at Fred Hutch.
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Aproposed rule by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that allegedly aims to strengthen transparency in regulatory science suggests that science is broken. It isn’t. We know it works because we can see the life-saving transplant technologies, hurricane forecasts, new medications, pest-resistant crops, and countless other breakthroughs that exist because of science. This discipline isn’t perfect, but it is the best tool…
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Researchers at Seattle’s Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center have demonstrated the effectiveness of a new method for getting immune cells to fight solid tumors — by spreading them like jam onto ultra-thin sheets of metal mesh, and then laying the mesh onto the tumors. So far, the technique for delivering genetically engineered T cells has been used only on mice — but…
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Embracing Diversity in a Team-Science World

As I prepare to leave my post as leader of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, my thoughts are turning more than ever toward the next generation of scientists. They will shape our future in a field that is being transformed daily by new discoveries and new technologies. They will work the laboratory benches, crunch the data and envision bold new ways to…
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A common virus that is harmless to most individuals may produce an important biomarker in determining the prognosis of brain cancer patients, according to a recent study published by a student researcher at the University of Cincinnati. Patients with glioblastomas or malignant brain tumors, face a difficult future. The disease is fatal, and only about 5 percent of patients are…
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These Small Proteins Reveal a New Kind of Brain Diversity

Stephen Smith, Ph.D., had been waiting for a certain kind of dataset for a long time. The Allen Institute neuroscientist has a driving interest in brain diversity — not in the sense of how one person’s brain is different from another’s, but in the rich and incredible variation within a single brain. There are a lot of different ways to explore this…
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The long-term effects of CD19-targeted chimeric antigen receptor–modified T-cell immunotherapy (CD19-CARTx) for B-cell malignancies on humoral immunity are unclear. We examined antiviral humoral immunity in 39 adults with B-cell malignancies who achieved durable complete remission without additional therapy for >6 months after CD19-CARTx. Despite CD19+ B-cell aplasia in all patients, the incidence of viral infections occurring >90 days post–CD19-CARTx was low…
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Drug Discovery Gains Powerful Single Cell Transcriptional Profiling Tool

A foundation of the drug discovery process—high throughput screening—is fraught with limitations. A new technique, sci-Plex, uses nuclear hashing to profile and quantify gene expression in single cells in response to thousands of independent perturbations at single-cell resolution. The technology holds promise for drug discovery of drugs for cancer, infection, prenatal medicine, and other research. “Earlier this year, we reached…
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