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The ethics of human embryo gene editing

Right now, scientists can edit the genes of human embryos. Using an exciting technology called CRISPR (clustered randomly interspersed short palindromic repeats), they can make precise cuts in targeted sections of DNA and paste in new code. But should they? Editing the genes of human embryos could prevent debilitating disease, but those changes will alter the germline […]

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New jobs in regenerative medicine

Canada is a hotbed for the commercialization of regenerative medicine and stem cell discoveries. How appropriate, since two Canadian doctors, James Till and Ernest McCulloch discovered transplantable stem cells at the Ontario Cancer Institute in Toronto in 1961. Accelerated growth in this industry sector is opening up new job opportunities for medical laboratory technologists. The […]

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CSMLS scare in Saskatoon

Ebola Scare in Saskatoon

You have probably heard about the Ebola epidemic that began in West Africa in early 2014 and continues today. But I bet you have never heard about an Ebola scare in Saskatoon that happened only a few days after the outbreak began in March 2014. For this story for The Canadian Journal of Medical Laboratory Science, I […]

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stem cell

AHCJ Stem Cells Session – Part 1

At AHCJ’s Health Journalism 2015 conference, it was a sincere privilege to hear global leaders in the field of stem cells discuss the latest advances and challenges in the field. As a journalist and as an advocate for a family member who donated stem cells in 2013, I found this session fascinating. Many thanks to […]

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hack the genome

Ethics of advances in genetics: Part 2

Rapid advances in the field of genetics are raising all sorts of ethical questions and a host of story ideas for health reporters. This is Part 2 of my earlier post summarizing a panel discussion which took place at Health Journalism 2015 on April 24, 2015 in Santa Clara, California. Expert panelists discussed the controversies […]

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genome sequencing

Ethics of advances in genetics: Part 1

Rapid advances in the field of genetics are raising a host of questions and story ideas for health reporters to cover. On April 24, 2015 at the Health Journalism 2015 conference in Santa Clara, California, four panelists spoke about where the field of genetics stands today and discussed the controversies and questions that need to be […]

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blood cancer

The ethics of using stem cells for enhancement

On October 9, 2014, the Centre for the Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine (CCRM) held a Café Scientifique called Bigger, Better, Faster, Stronger — Are Stem Cells the Answer? at the Hard Rock Café in Toronto, sponsored by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. Three experts discussed the ethics and likelihood of using stem cells to enhance human performance. Stem […]

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3D printer makes robotic fingers and hands

Given the advances in 3D printing technology in the last year, it’s no surprise that in the season finale of the TV show Grey’s Anatomy, Dr. Cristina Yang leaves Seattle to continue her cardiac surgery research at a fictitious state-of-the-art facility in Zurich — a facility equipped with dozens of 3D printers. In the real […]

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No More Drill and Fill with Canary Dental System

New Canadian device offers a radical shift to detect early dental caries Hate the dentist’s drill? A new Canadian dental device, the Canary Dental System, detects the size and depth of early cavities so that they can be treated, rather than needing to be drilled and filled later. The Canary System is the brainchild of […]

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Is My Cancer Different?

Cancer patients benefit from new molecular testing advances that inform individualized, targeted treatment plans. We all know someone whose life was severely impacted by or ended by cancer. In fact, the words we may fear hearing the most are, “You’ve got cancer,” a diagnosis that can be scary, confusing, stressful and overwhelming. More than 12.7 […]

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