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Tech news: September

This month's top tech news stories


Emerging viral threats

Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM) and charitable medical research organisation LifeArc are launching a new Translational Development Fund to help tackle infectious diseases. LifeArc will invest £2.7m to support the progression of new technologies and treatments for emerging viral threats and neglected tropical diseases. LifeArc will also join the LSTM-led Infection Innovation Consortium, making its platform to progress antibody-based treatments available to partners.


DNA-encoded libraries

A new study demonstrates how the combination of DNA-encoded libraries (DELs) and NanoBRET Target Engagement technology can accelerate early-stage drug discovery. Researchers from Promega Corporation and WuXi AppTec generated new chemical probes from molecules identified through a DEL screen. This offers opportunities to develop novel NanoBRET Target Engagement Assays aimed at many understudied proteins, accelerating efforts in identifying new potential therapeutics.

The University of Edinburgh

Tubular tissue advance

Innovative technology that creates ultra-thin layers of human cells in tube-like structures could lead to the development of lifelike blood vessels and intestines in the lab. The technique, known as RIFLE, enables the construction of separate layers as delicate as one cell thick. Developed by experts at the University of Edinburgh, RIFLE involves injecting a small volume of liquid containing cells into a tube rotating at high speed – up to 9000 rpm. The speed of the rotation causes the cells to distribute evenly across the internal surface, with higher speeds resulting in thinner layers.

Image credit | Promega

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Lipoproteins in the central nervous system

US scientists have created a method to detect lipoproteins in the central nervous system that they claim could give new insights into the workings of the brain.

Aggressive prostate cancer and mutations

An international research team has singled out mutations in 11 genes that are associated with aggressive prostate cancer.

Enabling the mRNA COVID vaccine

The 2023 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine has been jointly awarded to Katalin Karikó and Drew Weissman for their discoveries concerning nucleoside base modifications that enabled the development of effective mRNA vaccines against COVID-19.

Immunotherapy for all blood cancers

A broad new strategy could hold hope for treating virtually all blood cancers with CAR T cell therapy.