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The advances benefiting humanity’s health today and tomorrow. Follow along as Singularity Hub discusses the future of health and latest trends in health.

Three Kids Are Thriving After Kidney Transplants With No Immunosuppressants

Less than three years ago, eight-year-old Kruz and his little sister Paizlee lay on a surgical table ready to receive new kidneys. They had both gone through medical treatments that would daunt any adult....

Ultima Genomics Claims the $100 Genome and Raises $600M to Go Even Lower

In 2014, genomic sequencing giant, Illumina, announced that their new machine could sequence whole human genomes for $1,000 per genome. It was a significant milestone for a technology that cost some $95 million per...

A One-and-Done CRISPR Gene Therapy Will Aim to Prevent Heart Attacks

In a few months, a daring clinical trial may fundamentally lower heart attack risk in the most vulnerable people. If all goes well, it will just take one shot. It’s no ordinary shot. The trial,...

A Virus Just Wiped Out Antibiotic-Resistant Infection in an Immunocompromised Patient

When Dr. Jessica Little laid eyes on the 56-year-old man, Mr. M, she immediately knew he was in bad shape. Striking, painful red welts dotted his entire arm. He knew the cause of his rashes:...

Largest Genetic Study to Date Unveils DNA Profiles That Lead to Cancer

Cancers are like malicious snowflakes. Each harbors a unique set of mutations in its genes, gradually turning them to the dark side. Eventually, with no regard for their neighbors, mutated cells destroy tissues, organs,...

Scientists Use AI to Trace the Origins of Psychedelic Experiences in the Brain

For the past several decades, psychedelics have been widely stigmatized as dangerous illegal drugs. But a recent surge of academic research into their use to treat psychiatric conditions is spurring a shift in public...

First Controlled Human Trial Shows Cutting Calories Improves Health, Longevity

To some aging researchers, the secret to longevity is simple: eat less. Decades of research have shown that moderately restricting calories, without any other intervention, increases healthy lifespan in flies, worms, and mice. Yet bring...

Rapid DNA Sequencing Tech Breaks the Speed Record for Reading Whole Genomes

For children suffering from rare diseases, it usually takes years to receive a diagnosis. This “diagnostic odyssey” is filled with multiple referrals and a barrage of tests, seeking to uncover the root cause behind...

Decades-Old ‘Water Pill’ Opens New Avenues for Alzheimer’s Treatment

The cause of Alzheimer’s was supposedly simple. Mangled proteins aggregate into tangles and clumps. These clumps overwhelm neurons. Neurons lose their function and eventually die, leading to cognitive troubles that are the hallmark of...

Alphabet Chases Wonder Drugs With DeepMind AI Spinoff Isomorphic Labs

AI research wunderkind, DeepMind, has long been all fun and games. The London-based organization, owned by Google parent company Alphabet, has used deep learning to train algorithms that can take down world champions at the...

AI-Powered Brain Implant Eases Severe Depression With a Zap of Electricity

Sarah hadn’t laughed in five years. At 36 years old, the avid home cook has struggled with depression since early childhood. She tried the whole range of antidepressant medications and therapy for decades. Nothing worked....

Moonshot Project Aims to Understand and Beat Cancer Using Protein Maps

Understanding cancer is like assembling IKEA furniture. Hear me out. Both start with individual pieces that make up the final product. For a cabinet, it’s a list of labeled precut plywood. For cancer, it’s a...

Moderna’s mRNA Vaccine for HIV Is Starting Human Trials

Before 2020, many of us had never heard of mRNA. With the development of Covid-19 vaccines dependent on this molecule, though, it was all over the news. Covid was the first disease mRNA therapeutics...

‘Next-Generation’ Total Artificial Heart Successfully Transplanted into First US Patient

Late last year, a French company called Carmat received approval in Europe for its total artificial heart. It’s exactly what it sounds like: a heart made of synthetic and biological materials intended for implantation...

Breakthrough CRISPR Gene Therapy Could Be a ‘One and Done’ Injection

CRISPR gene editing has had a big decade. The technology, which earned two of its discovers a Nobel Prize in 2020, can target and edit genes more easily than its predecessors. Still, as tantalizing...

A New Brain Implant Automatically Detects and Kills Pain in Real Time

Chronic pain is like a horror movie monster that sneaks up on you. It’s unpredictable, lingers silently, and when it strikes it’s often too late to tame. More diabolically, our best weapon against it—pain...

23andMe’s Huge Covid-19 Study Draws Links Between the Virus and Our Genetics

Last spring, in a race against Covid-19, 23andMe launched an ambitious study to answer a question on everyone’s minds: who’s likely to get sick, or to get very sick? And being 23andMe, they hunted for...

Massive National Health Study Looks to Tailor Your Diet to Your Genetic Makeup

Like taxes and death, nutrition is something we can’t escape. Eating should be easy. Yet it’s also massively confusing, prone to misinformation, and utterly personal. Take competitive eaters who regularly chow down on thousands of...

All the Coronavirus in the World Could Fit Inside a Coke Can, With Plenty of Room to Spare

When I was asked to calculate the total volume of SARS-CoV-2 in the world for the BBC Radio 4 show "More or Less," I will admit I had no idea what the answer would...

This Artificial Heart Will Soon Be on the Market in Europe

Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in the world, particularly in the US and Western Europe. Medical science has come up with some ingenious solutions to common heart problems, like...

A Language AI Is Accurately Predicting Covid-19 ‘Escape’ Mutations

For all their simplicity, viruses are sneaky little life forces. Take SARS-Cov-2, the virus behind Covid-19. Challenged with the human immune system, the virus has gradually reshuffled parts of its genetic material, making it easier...

Another Win for Senolytics: Fighting Aging at the Cellular Level Just Got Easier

Longevity research always reminds me of the parable of blind men and an elephant. A group of blind men, who’ve never seen an elephant before, each touches a different part of the elephant’s body...

Who Should Get a Covid-19 Vaccine First?

If the book of nature is written in the language of mathematics, as Galileo once declared, the Covid-19 pandemic has brought that truth home for the world's mathematicians, who have been galvanized by the...

Will the Coronavirus Evolve to Be Less Deadly?

No lethal pandemic lasts forever. The 1918 flu, for example, crisscrossed the globe and claimed tens of millions of lives, yet by 1920, the virus that caused it had become significantly less deadly, causing...

Why We Need a Collective Vision to Design the Future of Health

My mother died of Covid-19 at the age of 91. She was recovering from surgery in an assisted-living facility in Durham, North Carolina. While she had previously been healthy, the virus aggressively invaded her...

Can We Trust AI Doctors? Google Health and Academics Battle It Out

Machine learning is taking medical diagnosis by storm. From eye disease, breast and other cancers, to more amorphous neurological disorders, AI is routinely matching physician performance, if not beating them outright. Yet how much can...

Oxford Scientists: These Are Final Steps We’re Taking to Get Our Coronavirus Vaccine Approved

Of the hundreds of potential Covid-19 vaccines in development, six are in the final stages of testing, known as phase three clinical trials. One of these—ChAdOx1 nCoV-19—is the vaccine we’re developing at the University...

An Army of Microscopic Robots Is Ready to Patrol Your Body

If I were to picture futuristic bots that could revolutionize both microrobotics and medicine, a Pop-Tart with four squiggly legs would not be on top of my list. I was so wrong. Last week, Drs. Marc...

Scientists Used Protein Switches to Turn T Cells Into Cancer-Fighting Guided Missiles

One of the main challenges in curing cancer is that unlike foreign invaders, tumor cells are part of the body and so able to hide in plain sight. Now researchers have found a way...

We Need New, Safer Ways to Treat Pain. Could Electroacupuncture Be One?

In college, I volunteered to have a needle jabbed into the fleshy part between my thumb and forefinger in the name of acupuncture. I had bruised the area earlier in a lab experiment. I...

An Indian Company Is Gearing Up to Make Millions of Doses of a $3 Covid-19 Vaccine

As the Covid-19 pandemic drags on, there’s one thing we’re all counting on to rescue us from the drudgery of socially-distanced life: a vaccine. How many times have you heard “X won’t happen again until...

Science Fiction Explores the Interconnectedness Revealed by the Coronavirus Pandemic

In the early days of the coronavirus outbreak, a theory widely shared on social media suggested that a science fiction text, Dean Koontz’s 1981 science fiction novel, The Eyes of Darkness, had predicted the...

Couch Potato No More: How the Benefits of Exercise Transfer to the Brain

Brain aging is reversible. How? Why? And how much can we rejuvenate an already aged brain? Those were the one conviction and three questions that guided me throughout my post-doctoral work at the University of...

How Fake Viruses Can Help Us Make the Best Possible Vaccines

Roughly 15 years ago, in a seeming prank, a pair of smiley faces graced the cover of Nature, one of the world’s preeminent science journals. Flash forward to today, and those smiley faces may...

Scientists Tap the World’s Most Powerful Computers in the Race to Understand and Stop the Coronavirus

In The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, the haughty supercomputer Deep Thought is asked whether it can find the answer to the ultimate question concerning life, the universe, and everything. It...

Artificial Kidneys Are a Step Closer With This New Tech

10 percent of the global population suffers from some form of kidney disease. That includes 37 million people in the US, 100,000 of whom pass away each year awaiting a kidney transplant. Our kidneys are...

Forget Exercise—These Mice Got Ripped With Gene Therapy

Trying to hack fitness is a multi-million-dollar industry; we’ve all seen at least one ad featuring a purported miracle product that claims it can make people lose weight and look great—without even trying. From...

To Find a Coronavirus Vaccine Faster, Should We Deliberately Infect Thousands of People?

“First, do no harm” is a core principle for all physicians. Yet with the new coronavirus wreaking havoc across the globe, the medical community is now asking: What if “first, do harm” is the...

How to Make Sense of Uncertainty in a Coronavirus World

As the internet churns with information about Covid-19, about the virus that causes the disease, and about what we’re supposed to do to fight it, it can be difficult to see the forest for...

How Will Coronavirus End? It Depends on Our Immunity. Three Possible Outcomes

We’re all so ready for this to be over. With the curve finally flattening in the US, the ramping up of anti-viral and vaccine trials against SARS-CoV-2—the virus that causes Covid-19—and the launch of antibody...

This New Smartphone-Based DNA Test Could Help Track Disease in Real Time

On-the-spot DNA tests could prove invaluable to doctors, farmers, and officials responsible for food safety or environmental monitoring. Now Chinese researchers have created an ultra-portable, smartphone-based DNA testing platform that costs less than $10. Whether...

Can Genes Explain Why Coronavirus Seriously Sickens Some and Spares Others?

In the early 1980s, a deadly epidemic was gaining momentum. Caused by a virus dubbed HIV, AIDs has since infected and killed millions of people around the world. But not everyone who is exposed...

This Group of Scientists Is Making Sure We’re Ready for the Next Pandemic

Ask just about anyone how the US is doing on its response to the coronavirus pandemic and you’ll get some variation of the same answer: poorly. From a shortage of tests and medical supplies...

Blood Is the Next Critical Tool In the Coronavirus Fight. Here’s Why

I’ve been sick for the past week. The symptoms match up with coronavirus infection. But like many people in the US, because they’re relatively mild I’m unable to get a test. Testing rates have finally...

Existing Drugs May Work Against Covid-19. AI Is Screening Thousands to Find Out

You’ve heard of chloroquine by now. Originally developed by German scientists in the 1930s, the anti-malaria drug is based on a natural compound present in the bark of certain South African trees. For nearly...

What Would Life on Mars Be Like? Millions of Us Are Getting a Taste

I live in California’s Bay Area, so for the last week and a half I’ve joined around seven million people in a shelter-in-place mandate. While my family is adjusting to this new normal, I’ve...

On the Front Lines of Developing a Test For the Coronavirus

“That escalated quickly!” is a common trope used in popular culture to describe when a situation gets out of hand before you’ve even had a chance to think about it. We don’t often use...

DeepMind’s Protein Folding AI Is Going After Coronavirus

In late December last year, Dr. Li Wenliang began warning officials about a novel coronavirus in Wuhan, China, but was silenced by the police before tragically succumbing to the disease two months later. Meanwhile,...

Coronavirus: Seven Ways Collective Intelligence Is Tackling the Pandemic

Tackling the emergence of a new global pandemic is a complex task. But collective intelligence is now being used around the world by communities and governments to respond. At its simplest, collective intelligence is the...

Gene Therapy Is Successfully Treating a Common Form of Inherited Blindness

K.L. always knew he might be completely blind before reaching adulthood. Even as a child he realized something was wrong with his eyes. Although he could see enough to navigate the world in daytime, as...

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