In a big shift of focus, the personal genomics company 23andMe recently announced the creation of a new therapeutics group with the intention of developing new therapies for both common and rare diseases.
Today is the eight annual Rare Disease Day, an international advocacy day held on the last day of February — a rare day for rare people. Rare Disease Day 2015 puts the focus on the daily lives of patients, families and caregivers who are living with a rare disease. This year’s slogan is “Day-by-day, hand-in-hand”, which emphasizes the need for international cooperation.
In his State of the Union address last month, President Obama announced the Precision Medicine Initiative, a bold new research effort to revolutionize how we improve health and treat disease.
On Monday, the 2014 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was announced . The prize was awarded to a team of scientists for their discoveries of cells that constitute a positioning system — an “inner GPS” —in the brain that makes it possible to orient ourselves in space, demonstrating a cellular basis for higher cognitive function.
The prize of 8-million-Swedish-krona ($1.2-million USD) was divided, with one half to Dr. John O´Keefe, age 75, at at University College London and the other half jointly to a husband-and-wife team, Dr. May-Britt Moser, age 51, and Dr. Edvard I. Moser, age 52, at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim, for discovering how the brain creates a map of the space around us and how we can navigate our way through a complex environment.