medical biotechnology

Mini-brains grown from stem cells show ‘complex' neural activity

Floating disembodied conscious brains that issue commands to luckless human minions may be a cliché of science fiction, but they are a far cry from the primitive, lab-grown "cerebral organoids" that real scientists study today. New research suggests that contemporary mini-brains -- even if inferior to their fictional counterparts -- are still capable of a surprise or two.

Congrats on the new baby. Would you like a DNA screening test?

Every baby born in the United States is given a routine blood test to screen for dozens of inherited medical conditions. Now, the U.S. National Institutes of Health is exploring whether to use DNA sequencing to screen newborn babies for additional genetic abnormalities and disorders. Such DNA testing would likely complement, but not replace, the current routine blood tests.

Infections from unapproved stem cell products hospitalize 12

Twelve people in three states developed infections and were hospitalized after they got infusions or injections of stem cell products derived from umbilical cord blood that were contaminated with bacteria, according to a report published Thursday by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Breast cancer testing guidelines out of date, study says

The current guidelines for genetic testing of breast cancer patients limit the number of women who can get tested. Because of these restrictions, these tests miss as many patients with hereditary cancers as they find, according to a study published Monday in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.