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  1. Disputed CRISPR Patents Stay with Broad Institute, U.S. Panel RulesRead the original story w/Photo

    Wednesday Feb 15 | Scientific American

    The US patent office ruled on Wednesday that hotly disputed patents on the revolutionary genome-editing technology CRISPR-Cas9 belong to the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, dealing a blow to the University of California in its efforts to overturn those patents. In a one-sentence decision by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board that the University of California shared with STAT, the three judges decided that there is "no interference in fact."

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  2. U.S. Science Advisers Outline Path to Genetically Modified BabiesRead the original story w/Photo

    Tuesday Feb 14 | Scientific American

    Scientists should be permitted to modify human embryos destined for implantation in the womb to eliminate devastating genetic diseases such as sickle-cell anaemia or cystic fibrosis - once gene-editing techniques advance sufficiently for use in people and proper restrictions are in place. That's the conclusion of a February 14 report from the US National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine.

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  3. Doubts Cloud Claims of Metallic HydrogenRead the original story w/Photo

    Thursday Jan 26 | Scientific American

    Metallic hydrogen may be abundant in the high-pressure interiors of gas-giant planets, and could potentially be used as a novel superconductor or rocket fuel on Earth. Credit: NASA, ESA, A. Simon Two physicists say that they have crushed hydrogen under such immense pressures that the gas became a shiny metal - a feat that physicists have been trying to accomplish for more than 80 years .

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  4. Lasers Activate Killer Instinct in MiceRead the original story w/Photo

    Jan 12, 2017 | Scientific American

    Predatory animals attack and kill their food all the time - but the brain circuits that control such behaviors remain unknown. Credit: Martin Harvey Getty Images Researchers have found a switch that seems to turn on a mouse's predatory instincts.

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  5. U.S. Energy Agency Toughens Protections for ScientistsRead the original story w/Photo

    Jan 12, 2017 | Scientific American

    The US Department of Energy has released new guidelines to protect researchers from political interference - a move that many say is long overdue . "DOE officials should not and will not ask scientists to tailor their work to any particular conclusion," said energy secretary Ernest Moniz, who announced the guidelines on 11 January.

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  6. Gene Drive Moratorium Shot Down at UN MeetingRead the original story w/Photo

    Dec 22, 2016 | Scientific American

    World governments at a United Nations biodiversity meeting this week rejected calls for a global moratorium on gene drives, a technology that can rapidly spread modified genes through populations and could be used to engineer entire species. But environmental activists' appeals for a freeze on gene-drive field trials, and on some lab research, are likely to resurface in the future.

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  7. Physicists Pin Down Antimatter in Milestone Laser TestRead the original story w/Photo

    Dec 19, 2016 | Scientific American

    Researchers at CERN, the European particle physics laboratory outside Geneva, trained an ultraviolet laser on antihydrogen, the antimatter counterpart of hydrogen. They measured the frequency of light needed to jolt a positron - an antielectron - from its lowest energy level to the next level up, and found no discrepancy with the corresponding energy transition in ordinary hydrogen.

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  8. Meet Chewie, the Biggest Australopithecus on RecordRead the original story w/Photo

    Dec 14, 2016 | Scientific American

    The sound was more like a squish than a thud, as the tall male australopith strode across the East African savannah. A volcanic eruption had left a patina of grey ash underfoot, while rainstorms that followed transformed the earth into wet cement.

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  9. CRISPR Heavyweights Battle in U.S. Patent CourtRead the original story w/Photo

    Dec 7, 2016 | Scientific American

    On 6 December, lawyers for the university laid out its claim to the gene-editing tool called CRISPRCas9 during a hearing at the US Patent and Trademark Office - and drew intense, sometimes skeptical, questioning from the three judges who will decide the fate of patents that could be worth billions of dollars . Berkeley and its rival, the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard in Cambridge, Massachusetts, are each vying for the intellectual property underlying CRISPRCas9 , which is adapted from a system that bacteria use to fend off viruses.

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  10. Researchers Baffled by Nationalist SurgeRead the original story w/Photo

    Dec 7, 2016 | Scientific American

    Marine Le Pen, leader of France's far-right National Front, is challenging the mainstream parties. Credit: Rmi Noyon, Flickr Waves of nationalist sentiment are reshaping the politics of Western democracies in unexpected ways - carrying Donald Trump to a surprise victory last month in the US presidential election, and pushing the United Kingdom to vote in June to exit the European Union .

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  11. The Embarrassing, Destructive Fight over Biotech's Big BreakthroughRead the original story w/Photo

    Dec 6, 2016 | Scientific American

    Editor's note : Today the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office will hear oral arguments in the ongoing proceeding about this CRISPR patent dispute. A defining moment in modern biology occurred on July 24, 1978, when biotechnology pioneer Robert Swanson, who had recently co-founded Genentech, brought two young scientists to dinner with Thomas Perkins, the legendary venture capitalist.

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  12. U.S. Mental Health Chief: Psychiatry Must Get Serious about MathematicsRead the original story w/Photo

    Oct 28, 2016 | Scientific American

    The US National Institute of Mental Health has a new director. On September 12, psychiatrist Joshua Gordon took the reins at the institute, which has a budget of US$1.5 billion.

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  13. Rwanda: From Killing Fields to TechnopolisRead the original story w/Photo

    Sep 6, 2016 | Scientific American

    A photo taken on July 24, 2016 shows a demonstration of a drone flying and landing by a private entrepreneur during an international trade fair in Kigali. Rwanda is planning to construct a droneport in order to get drones to carry mostly medical urgent supplies from a central hub to rural areas around the country.

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  14. Beyond Terminator: Squishy 'Octobot' Heralds New Era of Soft RoboticsRead the original story w/Photo

    Aug 25, 2016 | Scientific American

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  15. Busting the Billion-Dollar Myth: How to Slash the Cost of Drug DevelopmentRead the original story w/Photo

    Aug 24, 2016 | Scientific American

    A non-profit organization that creates new drugs for neglected diseases proves development doesn't have to cost a fortune. Can its model work more broadly? First, there was the pitching and rolling in an old Jeep for eight hours.

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  16. Poor Musical Taste? Blame Your UpbringingRead the original story w/Photo

    Jul 14, 2016 | Scientific American

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  17. Antarctic Ozone Hole Is on the MendRead the original story w/Photo

    Jul 1, 2016 | Scientific American

    It's the beginning of the end for the Antarctic ozone hole. A new analysis shows that, on average, the hole - which forms every Southern Hemisphere spring, letting in dangerous ultraviolet light - is smaller and appears later in the year than it did in 2000.

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  18. In a First, Quantum Computer Simulates High-Energy PhysicsRead the original story w/Photo

    Jun 23, 2016 | Scientific American

    Physicists have performed the first full simulation of a high-energy physics experiment - the creation of pairs of particles and their antiparticles - on a quantum computer. If the team can scale it up, the technique promises access to calculations that would be too complex for an ordinary computer to deal with.

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  19. Promising Gene Therapies Pose Million-Dollar ConundrumRead the original story w/Photo

    Jun 15, 2016 | Scientific American

    Drugs that act by modifying a patient's genes are close to approval in the United States, and one is already available in Europe. The developments mark a triumph for the field of gene therapy, once considered controversial .

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  20. Plan to Synthesize Human Genome Triggers a Mixed ResponseRead the original story w/Photo

    Jun 2, 2016 | Scientific American

    To some, the proposal is praiseworthy for its ambition and sheer chutzpah: at present, only tiny bacterial genomes and portions of the baker's yeast genome have been made from scratch. Credit: Liang Zhang/Thinkstock Proposals for a large public-private initiative to synthesize an entire human genome from scratch an effort that could take a decade and require billions of dollars for technological development were formally unveiled today, a month after they were first aired at a secretive meeting.

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