Latest Genetics News

FILE - In this Jan. 12, 2021, file photo a pharmacist draws saline while preparing a dose of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine in Sacramento, Calif.  Mutations to the virus are rapidly popping up and the longer it takes to vaccinate people, the more likely it is that a variant that can elude current tests, treatments and vaccines could emerge. (AP Photo/Noah Berger, Pool, File)

A new COVID-19 challenge: Mutations rise along with cases

Jan. 19, 2021 11:55 AM EST

The race against the virus that causes COVID-19 has taken a new turn: Mutations are rapidly popping up, and the longer it takes to vaccinate people, the more likely it is that a variant that can elude current tests, treatments and vaccines could emerge. The coronavirus is becoming more genetically diverse, and...

FILE - In this Sept. 7, 2010, file photo, Eric Steven Lander, head of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, gestures as he delivers a speech during the forum Mexico XXI Century, organized by the Telmex Foundation, in Mexico City. President-elect Joe Biden picked a pioneering geneticist to be his science advisor and elevated the job to his Cabinet. Friday's announcement of Lander won wide praise (AP Photo/Claudio Cruz, File)

Biden picks geneticist as science adviser, puts in Cabinet

Jan. 15, 2021 6:32 PM EST

President-elect Joe Biden announced Friday that he has chosen a pioneer in mapping the human genome — the so-called “book of life” — to be his chief science adviser and is elevating the top science job to a Cabinet position. Biden nominated Eric Lander, founding director of the Broad...

A worker in protective coverings directs members of the World Health Organization (WHO) team on their arrival at the airport in Wuhan in central China's Hubei province on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. A global team of researchers arrived Thursday in the Chinese city where the coronavirus pandemic was first detected to conduct a politically sensitive investigation into its origins amid uncertainty about whether Beijing might try to prevent embarrassing discoveries. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

WHO team arrives in Wuhan to investigate pandemic origins

Jan. 14, 2021 8:47 AM EST

WUHAN, China (AP) — A global team of researchers arrived Thursday in the Chinese city where the coronavirus pandemic was first detected to conduct a politically sensitive investigation into its origins amid uncertainty about whether Beijing might try to prevent embarrassing discoveries. The group sent to...

FILE - In this Saturday, June 18, 2005 file photo, identical twins Alf, left, and Sven Fehnhanhn, left background, 79, from Kassel, pose along with seven-month-old Luis Carl, right, und Albert Frank Millgramm, right background, during a twins' meeting in Berlin. According to research published on Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021, identical twins are not exactly genetically the same. (AP Photo/Jockel Finck)

Identical twins aren't perfect clones, research shows

Jan. 7, 2021 11:31 AM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — If you’re an identical twin who’s always resisted being called a clone of your sibling, scientists say you have a point. Identical twins are not exactly genetically the same, new research shows. Scientists in Iceland sequenced DNA from 387 pairs of identical twins —...

FILE - In this Dec. 22, 2020, file photo Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, prepares to receive his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, Pool, File)

Fauci: US taking hard look at variant of coronavirus

Dec. 27, 2020 3:30 PM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. health officials believe the coronavirus mutation that set off alarms in parts of Britain is no more apt to cause serious illness or be resistant to vaccines than the strain afflicting people in the United States but it still must be taken “very seriously,” the...

A man walks past a closed shop on Regent Street in central in London, Sunday, Dec. 20, 2020.  Millions of people in England have learned they must cancel their Christmas get-togethers and holiday shopping trips. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Saturday that holiday gatherings can’t go ahead and non-essential shops must close in London and much of southern England. Johnson imposed a new, higher level of coronavirus restrictions to curb sharply spreading infections in the capital and other areas.  (Stefan Rousseau/PA via AP)

EXPLAINER: Are new coronavirus strains cause for concern?

Dec. 20, 2020 7:49 PM EST

Reports from Britain and South Africa of new coronavirus strains that seem to spread more easily are causing alarm, but virus experts say it’s unclear if that’s the case or whether they pose any concern for vaccines or cause more severe disease. Viruses naturally evolve as they move through the...

This undated photo provided by Revivicor, Inc., a unit of United Therapeutics, shows a genetically modified pig. U.S. regulators have approved a genetically modified pig for food and medical products, making it the second such animal to get the green light for human consumption -- but United Therapeutics, the company behind it says there are no imminent plans for its meat to be sold. (Revivicor, Inc. via AP)

US regulators OK genetically modified pig for food, drugs

Dec. 15, 2020 4:27 PM EST

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. regulators have approved a genetically modified pig for food and medical products, making it the second such animal to get the green light for human consumption. But the company behind it says there are no imminent plans to sell it for meat. The pig is genetically engineered to...

This July 2019 image provided by the Sarah Cannon Research Institute shows Victoria Gray on her infusion day during a gene editing trial for sickle cell disease at the Sarah Cannon Research Institute and The Children's Hospital At TriStar Centennial in Nashville. Since her treatment, Gray has weaned herself from pain medications she depended on to manage her symptoms. (Anthem Pictures/Sarah Cannon Research Institute via AP)

Gene-editing treatment shows promise for sickle cell disease

Dec. 5, 2020 2:42 PM EST

Scientists are seeing promising early results from the first studies testing gene editing for painful, inherited blood disorders that plague millions worldwide, especially Black people. Doctors hope the one-time treatment, which involves permanently altering DNA in blood cells with a tool called CRISPR, may treat...

In this Feb. 12, 2019 photo, Meghan Waldron walks down the street in Boston. Waldron is a student at Emerson College with progeria, one of the world's rarest diseases. The first treatment has been approved for progeria, Friday, Nov. 20, 2020.  The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Friday approved Zokinvy which was shown in testing to extend patients’ lives by 2 ½ years on average.  (Suzanne Kreiter/The Boston Globe via AP)

1st drug for rare rapid-aging disease extends kids' lives

Nov. 20, 2020 7:06 PM EST

The first drug was approved Friday for a rare genetic disorder that stunts growth and causes rapid aging in children, after studies showed it can extend their lives. Kids with the genetic disorder progeria typically die in their early teens, usually from heart disease. But in testing, children taking the drug...