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Ashley Yeager

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Science Ticker

Gene therapy with electrical pulses spurs nerve growth

A deaf guinea pig's hearing improves when electrical signals from its cochlear implant (shown, left) are coupled with gene therapy to stimulate nerve cell regeneration in the inner ear.

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Electrical current from a cochlear implant has guided corrective genetic material into inner ear cells and stimulated nerve regeneration in deaf guinea pigs. The treatment improved the animals’ hearing sensitivity and range, researchers report April 24 in Science Translational Medicine. The gene therapy technique, which does not use viruses that could induce immune reactions, holds promise for improving the hearing of people with cochlear implants. It may also have applications in deep brain stimulation, the scientists say.

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Animals,, Physiology

Dolphins use sponges to dine on different grub

By Ashley Yeager 12:12pm, April 23, 2014
The animals can learn to use tools to exploit food sources that would be otherwise unavailable, a study suggests.
Genetics,, Animals

Rainbow trout genome shows how genetic material evolved

By Ashley Yeager 9:09am, April 23, 2014
The finding challenges the idea that whole genome duplications are followed by quick, massive reorganization and deletions of genetic material.
Genetics

New antibiotic resistance genes found in cow manure

By Ashley Yeager 12:30pm, April 22, 2014
Identifying these genes offers clues to how antibiotic resistance could move from agricultural ecosystems to other communities of organisms.
Genetics,, Ancestry

Neandertal, modern human DNA deviates even more

By Ashley Yeager 8:00am, April 22, 2014
An analysis of genetic material of Neandertals and modern humans shows genetic differences in the species' population sizes and even the curves of their spines.
Pollution,, Anthropology

Lead levels in ancient Rome’s water were high, but not toxic

By Ashley Yeager 5:53pm, April 21, 2014
Ancient Romans probably drank tap water with up to 100 times more lead than the levels found in local spring water.
Earth,, Ecosystems

Surge seen in number of U.S. wildfires

By Science News Staff 6:00pm, April 19, 2014
The number and size of wildfires in the western United States has steadily risen over the last three decades.
Cells,, Neuroscience

Insulating sheath on nerve cells isn't an even coat

By Ashley Yeager 6:00pm, April 18, 2014
Myelin doesn't evenly coat axons, a finding that runs counter to what scientists suspected.
Planetary Science,, Astronomy

RIP LADEE: 9/6/2013 – 4/18/2014

By Science News Staff 2:43pm, April 18, 2014
NASA’s Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) mission ended April 18.
Health,, Genetics

Gene variant, processed meat linked to boost in cancer risk

By Ashley Yeager 9:00am, April 18, 2014
In people with a specific variation of a gene on chromosome 10, eating processed meat is associated with an increased risk of developing colon cancer.
Cells,, Human Development

Protein that gets sperm into egg identified

By Ashley Yeager 8:00pm, April 17, 2014
The protein Folr4 on a reproductive egg plays this crucial role in the fusion of the sperm and egg, research shows.
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