Posted by: bluesyemre | January 1, 2013

Medicine: the appliance of science by Ian Sample

A microscopic HIV virus

  • More than once last year, researchers described leaps in medical science that were so breathtaking, and held so much potential for patients, that they immediately joined the list of fields to watch in the year ahead. In most cases, the work was, and is, at an early stage and its future success far from certain. Such is the nature of science. Most of today’s breakthroughs will be tomorrow’s failures. But some may go down in history for transforming how medicine is done. Often, medical science surges ahead when different areas converge. That’s the case with genome editing, which gives scientists the extraordinary ability to rewrite genes in living organisms. At the heart of the process are enzymes that can sever DNA at chosen locations. But to be useful, it required advances in computational genetics, and exquisite techniques to manipulate biological cells.

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