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Articles on Genome

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A virus’s genes hold a record of where it’s traveled, and when. imaginima/E+ via Getty Images

Charting changes in a pathogen’s genome yields clues about its past and hints about its future

After a nose swab tests positive for a virus or bacteria, scientists can use the sample’s genetic sequence to figure out where and when the pathogen emerged and how fast it’s changing.
Nigeria must increase its testing capacity to deal with rising COVID-19 cases Olukayode Jaiyeola/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Nigeria isn’t ready to deal with rising COVID-19 cases

Nigeria must increase its testing capacity and do more genomic studies to deal effectively with the Delta variant of COVID-19.
A tailings pond at an oilsands facility near Fort McMurray, Alta., in July 2012. The estimated cost of reclaiming oilsands mines is almost $31 billion. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

How engineered bacteria could clean up oilsands pollution and mining waste

Solutions to some of the globe’s most daunting environmental challenges may be closer than you think. Scientists are harnessing nature to clean up toxic chemicals and mining waste.
A security guard leads reporters away from the Wuhan Institute of Virology after a WHO team arrived for a field visit in Wuhan, Hubei province of China, Feb. 3, 2021. The team came to no conclusions about the origins of the pandemic. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

Origins of SARS-CoV-2: Why the lab-leak idea is being considered again

Gain-of-function studies make a natural virus more dangerous or transmissible to humans. Could the Wuhan Institute of Virology be the source of SARS-CoV-2?
Sequencing the whole genome of patient virus samples lets scientists watch for new variants. Sergei Malgavko/TASS via Getty Images

Where coronavirus variants emerge, surges follow – new research suggests how genomic surveillance can be an early warning system

By merging genomics with classical epidemiology, researchers are able to predict new disease outbreaks based on which viral variants are on the rise.
A complete human genome, seen here in pairs of chromosomes, offers a wealth of information, but it is hard connect genetics to traits or disease. HYanWong/Wikimedia Comons

Scientists are on a path to sequencing 1 million human genomes and use big data to unlock genetic secrets

The first full human genome was sequenced 20 years ago. Now, a project is underway to sequence 1 million genomes to better understand the complex relationship between genetics, diversity and disease.
Sequencing the genetic code of virus samples taken from COVID-19 patients reveals how SARS-CoV-2 is spreading and changing. Nate Langer/UPMC

Genomic surveillance: What it is and why we need more of it to track coronavirus variants and help end the COVID-19 pandemic

The US lags in testing coronavirus samples from COVID-19 patients, which can help track the spread of the virus and the emergence of new variants. But labs are ramping up this crucial surveillance.
Medical technician Amira Doudou prepares samples at the University Hospital Institute for Infectious Diseases in Marseille, France, Jan. 13, 2021, to study the highly contagious COVID-19 variant. (AP Photo/Daniel Cole)

Why new COVID-19 variants are on the rise and spreading around the world

Multiple COVID-19 variants are circulating around the world and becoming more common. These mutations can alter the ability of the virus to take hold and replicate within our cells.
On Dec. 8, 2020, the first members of the public were given doses of a coronavirus vaccine. AP Photo/Frank Augstein, Pool

International Statistic of the Year: Race for a COVID-19 vaccine

The coronavirus vaccine was developed faster than any vaccine in history. It took just 332 days from the first sequencing of the virus genome to the first vaccines given to the public.

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