Could we be farming rather than mining metals in the future?

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Surface of Seabed Manganese Nodule from South Korea

 There are trillions of potato-sized metal nodules on the floor of the ocean around the world.

Some of these nodules are being explored for economic potential. A major vote by a UN body on the commercial exploitation of these minerals is planned in October 2020 (postponed from July 2020).

However, the formation of these metallic nodules is radically different from the processes used to create such metals on land i.e., they are biological in origin rather the geological.

This has profound implications for what the true value of life around these metallic nodules could be.

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Malware encoded into strand of DNA by biohackers

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When biologists synthesize  DNA, they take pains not to create or spread a dangerous stretch of genetic code that could be used to create a toxin or, worse, an infectious disease. But one group of biohackers has demonstrated how DNA can carry a less expected threat—one designed to infect not humans nor animals but computers.

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Scientists Grow Miniature Human Livers in the Lab

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The ultimate goal is to provide a solution to the shortage of donor livers available for patients who need transplants.

Researchers at the Institute for Regenerative Medicine at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center have reached an early, but important, milestone in the quest to grow replacement livers in the lab. They are the first to use human liver cells to successfully engineer miniature livers that function – at least in a laboratory setting – like human livers. The next step is to see if the livers will continue to function after transplantation in an animal model.

 

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Key To Early Cancer Diagnosis Discovered By Bioengineering Student

Key To Early Cancer Diagnosis Discovered By Bioengineering Student

Raj Krishnan, a PhD student in bioengineering at the University of California San Diego (UCSD)

Cancers that are detected early have the best chance of being cured but, until now, there were no methods of detecting cancer at its earliest stages.  Raj Krishnan, a PhD student in bioengineering at the University of California San Diego (UCSD), has created a technology for the early diagnosis of cancer, giving new hope and possibility to cures that have eluded cancer victims for years because their diagnoses were too late.

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