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Scientists turn mammalian cells into complex biocomputers | Science

Computer hardware is getting a softer side. A research team has come up with a way of genetically engineering the DNA of mammalian cells to carry out complex computations, in effect turning the cells into biocomputers. The group hasn’t put those modified cells to work in useful ways yet, but down the road researchers hope the new programming techniques will help improve everything from cancer therapy to on-demand tissues that can replace worn-out body parts.


Scientists discover mechanism that causes cancer cells to self-destruct

Many cancer patients struggle with the adverse effects of chemotherapy, still the most prescribed cancer treatment. For patients with pancreatic cancer and other aggressive cancers, the forecast is more grim: there is no known effective therapy.


Astronomers are about to see a black hole's event horizon for the first time

Ever since first mentioned by Jon Michell in a letter to the Royal Society in 1783, black holes have captured the imagination of scientists, writers, filmmakers and other artists.



Perhaps part of the allure is that these enigmatic objects have never actually been 'seen'. But this could now be about to change as an international team of astronomers is connecting a number of telescopes on Earth in...

It's happening: Scientists can now reverse DNA ageing in mice

Researchers have identified a cellular mechanism that allows them to reverse ageing in mouse DNA and protect it from future damage.



They've shown that by giving a particular compound to older mice, they can activate the DNA repair process and not only protect against future damage, but repair the existing effects of ageing. And they're ready to start testing in humans within six months.


Scientists have turned spinach into beating human heart tissue

Researchers have successfully used spinach leaves to build functioning human heart tissue, complete with veins that can transport blood.



To tackle a chronic shortage of donor organs, scientists have been working on growing various tissues and even whole organs in the lab. But culturing a bunch of cells is only part of the solution - they simply won't thrive...

Type 2 Diabetes Has Been "Reversed" in 40% of Patients for 3 Months

Type 2 diabetes is generally considered to be a chronic health condition that can't be cured once it develops, and can only be managed with a combination of medication and healthy living – assisted by gastric band (bariatric) surgery in some cases.



But new research suggests that people may actually be able to beat the disease for set periods, by undertaking an intensive short-term course of medical treatment that's been shown...

Popular heartburn drugs linked to gradual yet 'silent' kidney damage

Taking popular heartburn drugs for prolonged periods has been linked to serious kidney problems, including kidney failure. The sudden onset of kidney problems often serves as a red flag for doctors to discontinue their patients' use of so-called proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), which are sold under the brand names Prevacid, Prilosec, Nexium and Protonix, among others.


New metamaterial is proved to be the world's first to achieve the performance predicted by theoretical bounds

In 2015 UC Santa Barbara mechanical engineer and materials scientist Jonathan Berger developed an idea that could change the way people think about high-performance structural materials. Two years later, his concept is paying research dividends.


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