Biden on the Cancer Moonshot, a viral trigger for Celiac’s and can CRISPR solve a huge health problem?

Highlights from AACR

(Xconomy, 4/6/2017, Alex Lash)

Earlier this week, our Eureka Blog staff attended the AACR Annual Meeting 2017, a conference which highlights the best cancer science and medicine from institutions all over the world.  One of the highlights was former Vice President Joe Biden’s special session, Beau Biden Cancer Moonshot: Progress and Promise. Biden vowed to continue fighting for efforts to achieve a decade’s worth of progress against cancer in five years. The meeting also offered a lot of updates on immunotherapy, so good and some not so good.

Gluten allergy in celiac disease may be provoked by virus

(New Scientist, 4/6/2017, Andy Coghlan)

Chances are you know someone who has celiac disease.  The disease has generally been thought to be triggered by a genetic predisposition to gluten. However, studies in mice suggest that a common, benign virus may prompt the onset of celiac disease in some people.  Researchers at the University of Chicago, along with several other leading institutions, suspect that reoviruses could permanently change the immune system such that you would be more likely to develop celiac disease.

Seeking Pig Organs for Human Transplants

(STAT News, 4/6/2017, Sharon Begley)

Biologist Luhan Yang has a plan and her plan involves  the hot gene-editing technology, CRISPR.  From eGenesis’s tiny headquarters in Kendall Square, she intends to use CRISPR to accomplish what the world’s largest drug companies failed to do despite investing billions of dollars: create “designer pigs” whose organs can be transplanted into people.  Yang, eGenesis’s chief scientific officer, has already made enormous strides, scientific and financial.

 

—Compiled by Social Media Specialist Jillian Scola