Body & Brain

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illustration of gene therapy in retina

NO GAIN  Patients with an inherited form of blindness experienced temporary gains in vision after receiving gene therapy. But the retina of one person shows that nearly six years after the treatment, vision cells died in the treated area (outlined upper left corner; cooler colors signify cell death) and in the rest of the retina. 

effects of radiation on the brain

BRAIN ZAP  After radiation exposure, mouse dendrites (green) in the medial prefrontal cortex were shorter and branched less than those of mice not exposed to radiation, as seen in this digital reconstruction. Exposed dendrites also had fewer docking sites (red) that detect messages from other cells. 

NUCLEAR DISARRAY  Normally tightly packed bundles of DNA (as in the normal stem cells, left) come undone in cells that age prematurely (right), enlarging their nuclei and promoting aging.

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