Science News Roundup: Illumina launches multi-gene test to detect rare treatable cancers; Colombian Duque opens gene bank for long-term crop conservation and more


Here is a summary of current scientific news.

Illumina launches multi-gene test to detect rare treatable cancers

Genome sequencing group Illumina on Tuesday launched a cancer screening test in Europe that checks for a wide range of tumor genes in a tissue sample, potentially helping patients with rare diseases be matched with treatment options . The test, which Illumina says looks for more mutations than any kit available, comes amid efforts by the pharmaceutical industry to develop precision oncology drugs for ever-smaller groups of patients defined by genetic profiling. . This created a pent-up demand for more sophisticated diagnostic tools.

Colombian Duque opens gene bank for long-term crop conservation

Colombian President Ivan Duque on Tuesday inaugurated the world’s largest genetic library for beans, cassava and tropical forages for livestock feed, which will ensure the long-term conservation of crops and could help protect food systems against shocks. According to the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), increasing food demand and declining agricultural production in the context of climate change means that researchers must breed new plant varieties to withstand the double impact of rising temperatures and extreme weather events.

Omicron linked to increased croup in babies; Tuberculosis vaccine improves immune response to coronavirus

Here is a summary of some recent studies on COVID-19. They include research that deserves further study to corroborate the findings and that has not yet been certified by peer review. Omicron linked to croup in babies

An ancient sarcophagus discovered under Notre-Dame de Paris cathedral

Archaeologists have found an ancient lead sarcophagus beneath Notre-Dame Cathedral as well as fragments of a rood screen, providing new insight into the history of the building which is currently being rebuilt after a devastating fire in 2019. Notre-Dame, which dates back to the 12th century, commissioned the excavation work inside the cathedral as a precautionary measure before the installation of the scaffolding necessary for the restoration of a 100 meter high wooden ridge.

NASA’s big new moon rocket set to debut on Florida’s launch pad

NASA’s next-generation moon rocket was scheduled to make a long-awaited slow-motion trip Thursday from an assembly plant to its launch pad in Florida for a final round of tests in the coming weeks that will determine how quickly the spacecraft will be able to fly. The deployment of the towering Space Launch System (SLS) rocket with its Orion crew capsule perched atop marks a key milestone in US plans for renewed lunar exploration after years of setbacks, and the first public glimpse of a space vehicle more than a decade in development.

Blue Origin will send ‘SNL’ star Pete Davidson into space next week

‘Saturday Night Live’ comedian Pete Davidson has been confirmed as the next celebrity vying for a trip to the far reaches of space thanks to Jeff Bezos’ astro-tourism company Blue Origin, with his suborbital flight scheduled for the week next. The 28-year-old comedian and boyfriend of reality TV star and socialite Kim Kardashian was announced Monday by Blue Origin as a ‘guest of honour’ joining five paying customers for the company’s fourth commercial flight since the summer last.

(With agency contributions.)


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