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Researchers develop new tool to identify genetic risk factors

Researchers developed a new biological pathway-based computational model, called the Pathway-based Human Phenotype Network, to identify underlying genetic connections between different diseases. The Pathway-based Human Phenotype Network mines the data present in large publicly available disease datasets to find shared SNPs, genes, or pathways and expresses them in a visual form.

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Precise gene editing in monkeys paves the way for valuable human disease models

Monkeys are important for modeling diseases because of their close similarities to humans, but past efforts to precisely modify genes in primates have failed. Researchers have now achieved precise gene modification in monkeys for the first time using an efficient and reliable approach known as the CRISPR/Cas9 system. The study opens promising new avenues for the development of more effective treatments for a range of human diseases.

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Cell cycle speed is key to making aging cells young again

Researchers identified a major obstacle to converting cells back to their youthful state -- the speed of the cell cycle, or the time required for a cell to divide. When the cell cycle accelerates to a certain speed, the barriers that keep a cell's fate on one path diminish. In such a state, cells are easily persuaded to change their identity and become pluripotent, or capable of becoming multiple cell types.

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Nearly everyone uses piezoelectrics: Now scientists know more about how they actually work

Piezoelectrics, materials that can change mechanical stress to electricity and back again, are everywhere in modern life. Computer hard drives. Loudspeakers. Medical ultrasound. Sonar. But there are major gaps in our understanding of how they work. Now researchers believe they've learned why one of the main classes of these materials, known as relaxors, behaves in distinctly different ways from the rest. The discovery comes in the shape of a butterfly.

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The Solar Super Bowl: Colorado vs. Washington

This year's Super Bowl is set to be one for the ages, assuming they can keep the lights on. Denver, the NFL's number-one offense, is pitted against the number-one defense, Seattle. If there were such a thing as a Solar Super Bowl, the matchup of Colorado against Washington probably wouldn't be nearly as exciting as Sunday's game. But we'll try anyway. Colorado's market, …