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Orangutan genomes decoded
Washington University scientists led an international project to sequence the orangutan genome. The research reveals intriguing clues about the evolution of great apes, including humans, and showcases the immense genetic diversity among orangutans, which are endangered due to the encroachment of humans in their native habitats in Borneo and Sumatra in Southeast Asia.
Simple blood test may diagnose deadly Niemann-Pick type C disease
For patients with Niemann-Pick type C (NPC) disease, the test will make it possible to begin treatment earlier, when it is more likely to improve quality of life. The fatal genetic disorder frequently takes years to diagnose, and earlier detection could extend the lives of those suffering this rare disorder.
Songbird genome reveals new insights
An international team of scientists has decoded the genome of a songbird - the Australian zebra finch - to reveal intriguing clues about the genetic basis and evolution of vocal learning. The research can help scientists understand how humans learn language. It also sets the stage for studies to identify the genetic and molecular origins of speech disorders, such as those related to autism, stroke, stuttering and Parkinson's disease.
Unraveling the genetics of pediatric cancer
Washington University's Genome Center and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital have teamed to identify the genetic changes that give rise to some of the deadliest childhood cancers. They're joining forces to decode the genomes of more than 600 young cancer patients, with the goal of improving diagnosis and treatment of the disease, and the survival rate.
NIH grants to fund important microbiome research at WUSM
Trillions of "good" bacteria live inside the human body. The NIH's $42 million Human Microbiome Project is aimed at uncovering the role of these microbes in human health and disease.
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