Viruses in Koalas Can Be Models for Genome Immunity

Ellie Teng ‘21 Retroviruses such as HIV are viruses that take genes from host cells and incorporate them into their own genomes. Transposons are DNA elements that can change positions in the genome, increasing the potential for mutations and genome instability. Piwi-interacting RNAs (piRNAs) guide the immune system towards silencing the transposons during germline development. Koalas infected by the retrovirus KoRV-A virus are immunodeficient and … Continue reading Viruses in Koalas Can Be Models for Genome Immunity

Using the Genome to Forecast Health

By Allan Mai ‘20 Wouldn’t it be convenient if researchers could tell how likely an individual is to have a certain disease just by looking at his or her genome? Researchers are doing exactly that by looking at over 6.6 million points of the human genome; according to Sekar Kathiresan, a geneticist at Massachusetts General Hospital (Mass General), scientists now have the ability to calculate … Continue reading Using the Genome to Forecast Health