Researchers from the UW and Carnegie Mellon University have developed an interface to connect the brains of three people. Users can work together through brain-to-brain communication to play a Tetris-like game. The interface, dubbed BrainNet, enabled three subjects to collaboratively decide without speaking whether falling pieces should be rotated. Two “senders” wore electroencephalograms (EEGs), which record the electrical impulses of brain…
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Forecasting the Shape of Flu Viruses to Come

As millions of Americans line up for their annual flu shots this fall, scientists around the globe are already planning for the next round. How can they change next year’s vaccines to stop the strains of influenza most likely to emerge in 2019? The effort to pick new vaccines to block ever-evolving flu viruses requires both science and serendipity. Because…
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Traditional methods of diagnosing certain brain cancers in children are deeply flawed, a new study shows. As a result, some children with these particular rare tumors have been getting the wrong diagnoses and, in some cases, the wrong treatment, the researchers say. The errors were only revealed with the help of new tests that can look at tumor cells’ molecular profiles, said…
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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says more than 50 million people in the US suffer from allergies. Fifteen million are allergic to foods which can be life-threatening. Now researchers have a target for developing treatments and better diagnoses. Franny Hall’s peanut allergy has gotten worse since her first reaction to peanut butter in the first grade. Franny said,…
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Research to prevent vision loss from glaucoma will be aided by a project funded through a major National Eye Institute effort in regenerative medicine. The lab of Tom Reh, professor of biological structure at the UW School of Medicine, will join with scientists at other institutions to look at a possible cell-replacement approach to correcting degeneration of the optic nerve. The multi-institutional…
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More than five years ago, when Dr. Lisa Maves, a scientist at Seattle Children’s Research Institute, first started using CRISPR to make genetic alterations in zebrafish, she saw the potential for the minnow-sized fish to help doctors understand how genetic mutations contribute to a child’s condition. “Essentially, we set out to make a patient’s fish,” Maves said. “The zebrafish has a…
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A newly discovered toxin that some bacteria deploy to fend off competing bacteria stands out from others in the battle for microbial domination.  While many deadly substances have been identified among bacteria, this previously unknown toxin behaves in a familiar way. “What is special about this toxin,” noted UW Medicine microbiologist Brook Peterson,  “is that it acts by the same…
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There’s a new biotechnology spin-out from the University of Washington, and the company is already raising cash to get its technology off the ground. Split Biosciences, which also goes by Split Bio, just raised a $1.2 million seed round. In an email to GeekWire, the company declined to identify the investors in the round, but did share details of its…
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ISCRM Faculty Shine a New Light on Scarring

Collaboration is the engine of scientific progress at UW Medicine and at the Institute of Stem Cell & Regenerative Medicine (ISCRM), where 130 researchers are developing stem cell-based approaches to treat diseases affecting nearly every organ and system in the human body. So, exactly what does it look like when two clever minds probing questions about everyday biological functioning team…
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The International AIDS Vaccine Initiative announced the launch of a first-of-its-kind clinical trial Tuesday that will test a new HIV vaccine candidate. The candidate, called eOD-GT8 60mer, uses what scientists call a structure-based vaccine approach and the trial marks the first time this approach will be tested in humans. Scientists are hopeful that it could be a key step in developing…
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