Megan Molteni
Megan Molteni
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Biology's Roiling Debate Over Publishing Research Early

Biology's Roiling Debate Over Publishing Research Early

Daniel MacArthur set out to build a massive library of human — the biggest ever. The 60,706 raw sequences, collected from colleagues all over the globe, took up a petabyte of memory. It was the kind of flashy, blockbuster project that would secure MacArthur a coveted spot in one of science’s top three journals, launching his new lab at the Broad Institute into the scientific spotlight. But before all that happened, he did something that counted as an act of radicalism in the world of biology: He put it on the internet.Posting scientific papers online before peer review—in so-called preprint...

August 2, 2017
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A New Crispr Technique Could Fix Almost All Genetic Diseases

A New Crispr Technique Could Fix Almost All Genetic Diseases

Andrew Anzalone was restless. It was late fall of 2017. The year was winding down, and so was his MD/PhD program at Columbia. Trying to figure out what was next in his life, he’d taken to long walks in the leaf-strewn West Village. One night as he paced up Hudson Street, his stomach filled with La Colombe coffee and his mind with Crispr gene editing papers, an idea began to bubble through the caffeine brume inside his brain. Crispr, for all its DNA-snipping precision, has always been best at breaking things. But if you want to replace a faulty gene with a healthy one, things get more...

October 21, 2019
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Why It’s a Big Deal If the First Covid Vaccine Is ‘Genetic’

Why It’s a Big Deal If the First Covid Vaccine Is ‘Genetic’

when representatives from the drug company Pfizer that its Covid-19 vaccine appears to be more than 90 percent effective, , White House officials () , and sighs of relief went up all around the internet. “Dear World. We have a vaccine! Best news since January 10,” Florian Krammer, a virologist and vaccinologist at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine (who also happens to be in the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine trial).Here's all the WIRED coverage in one place, from how to keep your children entertained to how this outbreak is affecting the economy. But having a press release from a pharmaceutical...

Nov 10
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What to Wear When Battling the Venomous Asian Giant Hornet

What to Wear When Battling the Venomous Asian Giant Hornet

surely seen : A dozen humanoid forms encased in full-body, white nylon suits are working on scaffolding at the base of a saran-wrapped tree by the red glow of headlamps, one of them raising a plexiglass vacuum tube between its blue-gloved hands in triumph. Inside, 85 wasps, each the size of a human thumb, are piled against one another in cold-induced slumber. No, these weren’t scenes from the next great biothreat thriller. Over the weekend, Washington State Department of Agriculture workers took out the first nest found in the United States.Come to think of it, it was sort of a biothreat...

Oct 28
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Everything You Need To Know About Crispr Gene Editing

Everything You Need To Know About Crispr Gene Editing

days of gene editing, biologists had a molecular tool kit that was somewhat akin to a printing press. Which is to say, altering DNA was a messy, labor-intensive process of loading genes onto viruses bound for target cells. It involved more than a fair amount of finger-crossing. Today, scientists have the genetic equivalent of Microsoft Word, and they are beginning to edit DNA almost as easily as software engineers modify code. The precipitating event? Call it the Great Crispr Quake of 2012. If you’re asking “What’s Crispr?” the short answer is that it’s a revolutionary new class of...

August 1, 2020
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This Company Wants to Rewrite the Future of Genetic Disease—Without Crispr Gene Editing

This Company Wants to Rewrite the Future of Genetic Disease—Without Crispr Gene Editing

curing inherited disease has made headlines, including at WIRED, for years. ( , , , and .) Finally, at least for one family, the is turning out to deliver more hope than hype. A year after 34-year-old Victoria Gray received an infusion of billions of Crispr’d cells, last week that those cells were still alive and alleviating the complications of her sickle cell disease. Researchers say it’s still too soon to call it a cure. But as the first person with a genetic disorder to be successfully treated with Crispr in the US, it’s a huge milestone. And with dozens more clinical trials currently...

July 7, 2020
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What Minnesota’s Protests Are Revealing About Covid-19 Spread

What Minnesota’s Protests Are Revealing About Covid-19 Spread

since was killed by Minneapolis police officers outside a grocery store at 38th Street and Chicago Avenue, the intersection has remained closed to traffic—filled instead with flowers, memorial murals, and thousands of daily visitors who come to pay their respects. Except for the masks when you’re inside that now-sacred space, it’s hard to remember there’s going on. But in the shadow of the Sabathani Community Center a few blocks to the west, where a transformation of another kind has been underway, it’s impossible to forget.Here's all the WIRED coverage in one place, from how to keep your...

June 18, 2020
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Why Volcanologists Didn't Predict New Zealand's Deadly Eruption

Why Volcanologists Didn't Predict New Zealand's Deadly Eruption

Scientists knew White Island was showing signs of “volcanic unrest,” but their arsenal of data and sensors couldn't prepare them for tragedy. A month before the eruption, volcanologists had raised the threat level on New Zealand's White Island volcano. Subsequent monitoring didn't point to imminent danger. On Monday, at 2:11 pm local time, New Zealand’s White Island volcano unexpectedly erupted, blasting a superheated plume of ash, sulfur gas, and steam 12,000 feet in the air and blanketing the crater’s floor in powdered rock and debris. At the time, dozens of people were visiting the...

December 29, 2019
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Is There a Coronavirus Vaccine? Here's Everything You Need to Know

Is There a Coronavirus Vaccine? Here's Everything You Need to Know

It’s been fewer than three months since emerged in China, causing fever, coughing, and, in severe cases, pneumonia. Since then, the disease has , infecting nearly 93,000 people and killing more than 3,000.What makes the coronavirus scary enough to cause a worldwide and lead countries to and isn’t that it’s super deadly. So far, the World Health Organization Covid-19’s fatality rate to be about 3.4 percent globally, which is still lower than other recent coronavirus outbreaks, including SARS and MERS. (That said, it appears to be , which has a case fatality rate of around 0.1 percent.) And...

March 7, 2020
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A Disease Tracker Backed by Gates and Zuckerberg Tackles Covid-19 in Cambodia

A Disease Tracker Backed by Gates and Zuckerberg Tackles Covid-19 in Cambodia

Jessica Manning had no experience with coronaviruses. The infectious disease researcher had lived and worked in Cambodia off and on since 2013, studying the mosquitoes of the Mekong Delta and how their saliva helps in humans. But in January, the country flagged its first patient, and the lab that delivered the diagnosis wanted to send samples from the patient and his family to Manning for further testing.Manning works at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases’ Laboratory of Malaria and Vector Research in Phnom Penh, which is part of a decades-old collaboration between...

March 10, 2020
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