Recent alarmist headlines this week claim artificial intelligence (AI) will put half of us out of work. These headlines—and there were several—stem from comments by Rice University’s computer scientist Moshe… read more
Who needs science fiction? Nature is a wealth of imaginative plot twists. Take carbon. Carbon is common. It’s the fourth most abundant element in the universe. And yet, carbon is… read more
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), cancer claimed 8.2 million lives worldwide in 2012. Perhaps no other disease highlights the need for improved diagnostic and treatment options better than… read more
Currently, we take the shotgun approach to treatments for diseases like cancer. The body is indiscriminately bombarded with drugs and radiation harmful to diseased and healthy cells alike. While we… read more
As the changing climate pushes arid regions around the world to become drier, many are asking how we will continue to provide enough water for the people and crops in… read more
The conventional wisdom has it that there’s no silver bullet for treating cancer; the disease simply has too many forms for a one-size-fits-all solution. But there may be, if a… read more
There’s something a little creepy-sounding about the phrase “lab-grown organs,” but producing human organs in the lab could have a range of such powerful benefits that, if they became widely… read more
Efforts to devise better, cheaper tests are nothing new, but Rice University researcher Dmitri Lapotko has developed the first bloodless, instant test for the disease. According to a recent paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Lapotko’s test is accurate enough to detect a single infected red blood cell in 800 with no false positives.
Since the development of induced pluripotent stem cells in 2006, scientists have managed to use the manufactured stem cells like seeds to grow a wide range of tissues and rudimentary organs. But different tissue types have not proven equal, and researchers are still struggling to coax stem cells to take on certain roles: Lung cells have proved difficult to create. Columbia University researchers recently managed to develop functional lung and airway cells from human iPSCs.
We often find out too late what’s happening inside our bodies when it’s stricken by disease or cancer, but those days could be coming to an end. The McDevitt Lab of… read more