Microsoft is teaming up with leading medical research organizations to create a shared network of research data in the Pacific Northwest. Dubbed the Cascadia Data Discovery Initiative (CDDI), the goal of the collaboration is simple: make it easier to find and share medical data. For example, researchers at one of the institutions should be able to easily locate relevant data at…
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This research shows that pandemic multi-drug resistant (‘superbug’) strains can emerge virtually instantly, without a multi-step prolonged evolution, by a one-time chromosomal gene exchange between distantly related bacterial strains. Potentially, this could be an exchange between a human pathogenic strain and a multi-drug resistant strain that come from animals or the environment. The next step for this work is finding out whether other superbug strains also emerged instantly by gene exchange, and identifying the main sources of the drug-resistant strains in nature.
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It’s possible to take precancerous cells back in time, so to speak, revealing individual DNA mutations in their earliest state and the likely sequence in which those mutations were acquired, according to scientists in Seattle. “When a blood draw or biopsy detects a precancerous condition, that is the first recognition that something’s wrong,” Doulatov said. “But if we think of cancer as genetically driven process that evolves over time, the molecular-level DNA mutations that caused the diagnosis very likely began years earlier. We wondered: Can we go back in history and figure out how a particular tumor evolved?”
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Bringing Cell Science Resources to the Classroom

Ashley Ziemer loved high school biology. After finishing this year’s class, taught by Tom Martinez at Glenbard East High School in Lombard, Illinois, she says wants to major in biology in college. “I just find it so amazing how everything is connected,” said Ziemer, describing what she just finished learning about cells in her junior year. “All the different parts…
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The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded Geisinger, along with the University of Washington in Seattle and Washington University in St. Louis, a $5.8 million, five-year grant to study the role of genetics in neuropsychiatric disorders. Researchers will recruit patients with known genetic causes of neuropsychiatric disorders, including autism spectrum disorder, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder. Teams will then conduct in-depth genomic…
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Sequencing a genome is getting cheaper, but making sense of the resulting data remains hard. Researchers have now found a new way to extract useful information out of sequenced DNA. By cataloging subtle evolutionary signatures shared between pairs of genes in bacteria, the team was able to discover hundreds of previously unknown protein interactions. This method is now being applied to the…
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For 60 years, women have had the power to prevent unplanned pregnancy — and the responsibility for contraception was firmly placed on them. From the pill to the coil to the implant and modern fertility apps such as Natural Cycles, dozens of contraceptives have been developed for women, while for men the options have remained limited and rather old-fashioned: condoms…
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Meet Regina Wu, a Seattle-based biologist who works to bring science to the classrooms across Washington state. What do you do? I’m a curriculum designer and educator at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. I partner with teachers and scientists to translate groundbreaking research into labs and lessons for the classroom. As a program manager for the Hutch’s Science Education Partnership, I work…
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Kristin Anderson has already fought cancer in more ways than one. She’s a cancer survivor whose battle with breast cancer started when she was just 28 years old and pursuing a doctorate in immunology. And as a researcher at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, she’s investigating ways to use our body’s own immune system to attack solid tumors. But Anderson…
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The American Heart Association is pumping almost 4-million dollars into the University of Washington, opening the door for researchers to study sudden cardiac arrest and arrhythmia’s in order to develop, test and implement innovative new ways to prevent and treat the potentially deadly conditions. Each year in the United States, it’s estimated 350,000 people suffer from sudden cardiac arrest which…
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