Features

N-of-1 Trials Take on Challenges in Health Care
N-of-1 Trials Take on Challenges in Health Care
Catherine Offord | Jul 15, 2019
From personalizing clinical practice to aiding biomedical research, individualized clinical trials have been heralded as a solution to several problems plaguing modern medicine. But they’ve yet to be widely adopted.  
Personalized Cancer Vaccines in Clinical Trials
Personalized Cancer Vaccines in Clinical Trials
Jasreet Hundal, Elaine R. Mardis | Jul 15, 2019
The field is young, but predicting antigens produced by patients’ malignant cells could yield successful treatments for individuals with a range of cancer types.
How the Microbiome Influences Drug Action
How the Microbiome Influences Drug Action
Shawna Williams | Jul 15, 2019
Through their effects on metabolism and immunity, bacteria in the gut affect whether medications will be effective for a given patient.

Contributors

Contributors
Contributors
Contributors
Meet some of the people featured in the July/August 2019 issue of The Scientist.

Editorial

Moving Towards Individualized Medicine For All
Moving Towards Individualized Medicine For All
Moving Towards Individualized Medicine For All
How we talk about the coming revolution in clinical care matters as much as the need to involve all types of people in the process.

Speaking of Science

Ten Minute Sabbatical
Ten Minute Sabbatical
Ten Minute Sabbatical
Take a break from the bench to puzzle and peruse.

Freeze Frame

Caught on Camera
Caught on Camera
Caught on Camera
Selected Images of the Day from the-scientist.com

Notebook

Swamped by Sargassum: The New Normal for Caribbean Beaches
Swamped by Sargassum: The New Normal for Caribbean Beaches
Swamped by Sargassum: The New Normal for Caribbean Beaches
Scientists are pretty sure they know where the seaweed is coming from. Now they want to know why it’s here.
Smart Pills Help Monitor Cancer Patients’ Therapy
Smart Pills Help Monitor Cancer Patients’ Therapy
Smart Pills Help Monitor Cancer Patients’ Therapy
Sensors encapsulated with oral chemotherapy drugs help patients and physicians keep track of treatments.
Agriculture and Climate Shape Biodiversity on Mount Kilimanjaro
Agriculture and Climate Shape Biodiversity on Mount Kilimanjaro
Agriculture and Climate Shape Biodiversity on Mount Kilimanjaro
A six-year study across the Tanzanian mountain’s slopes hints at how land-use practices will interact with a changing climate to influence ecosystems around the world.
Tumor Organoids Hold Promise for Personalizing Cancer Therapy
Tumor Organoids Hold Promise for Personalizing Cancer Therapy
Tumor Organoids Hold Promise for Personalizing Cancer Therapy
The three-dimensional cell cultures are still in the development phase, but researchers are excited about their use to predict patients’ responses to various treatment options.

Modus Operandi

Digital DNA Detection
Digital DNA Detection
Digital DNA Detection
A CRISPR-based electronic sensor flags target DNA sequences at high speed.

The Literature

Glioblastoma on a Chip
Glioblastoma on a Chip
Glioblastoma on a Chip
Researchers use 3-D printing technology to construct a brain cancer model that accurately recapitulated in vivo biology and predicted patient drug responses.
Researchers Identify Biomarkers for Pain in Blood SamplesResearchers Identify Biomarkers for Pain in Blood Samples
Researchers Identify Biomarkers for Pain in Blood Samples
Researchers Identify Biomarkers for Pain in Blood Samples
The expression of a slew of genes in psychiatric patients closely tracks pain intensity and predicts future emergency room visits, according to a study.
T Cell Proliferation Linked to CAR T Responses
T Cell Proliferation Linked to CAR T Responses
T Cell Proliferation Linked to CAR T Responses
Comparing the cells of cancer patients who did and did not respond to the immunotherapy could reveal biomarkers to predict who should receive it in the first place.

Profile

In Our Blood: A Profile of Stuart Orkin
In Our Blood: A Profile of Stuart Orkin
In Our Blood: A Profile of Stuart Orkin
By unraveling the molecular underpinnings of inherited blood disorders, the Boston Children’s Hospital researcher has provided the basis for therapies now being tested for beta-thalassemia and sickle cell disease.

Scientist to Watch

Laura Bowers Works to Sever the Link Between Obesity and Cancer
Laura Bowers Works to Sever the Link Between Obesity and Cancer
Laura Bowers Works to Sever the Link Between Obesity and Cancer
The Purdue University nutrition researcher delves into the details of how fat tissue affects tumors.

Lab Tools

Strategies for Smuggling Gene Therapies Past the Immune System
Strategies for Smuggling Gene Therapies Past the Immune System
Strategies for Smuggling Gene Therapies Past the Immune System
Researchers are devising ways to prevent viral vectors carrying gene therapies from triggering an immune response.

Bio Business

Biotechs Race to Develop Stem Cell Treatments for Diabetes
Biotechs Race to Develop Stem Cell Treatments for Diabetes
Biotechs Race to Develop Stem Cell Treatments for Diabetes
Insulin-producing cells grown in the lab could offer a functional cure for the disease.

Reading Frames

Opinion: Applying AI to Clinical Care Is Key to Individualized Medicine
Opinion: Applying AI to Clinical Care Is Key to Individualized Medicine
Opinion: Applying AI to Clinical Care Is Key to Individualized Medicine
Not only can artificial intelligence revolutionize healthcare, it could help restore the doctor-patient relationship.

Foundations

Heel Prick, 1957
Heel Prick, 1957
Heel Prick, 1957
Robert Guthrie’s blood test for the metabolic disorder phenylketonuria launched a worldwide movement to screen every baby for the disease soon after birth.

Infographics

Infographic: N-of-1 Studies Tackle Limitations of Randomized Controlled Trials
Infographic: N-of-1 Studies Tackle Limitations of Randomized Controlled Trials
Infographic: N-of-1 Studies Tackle Limitations of Randomized Controlled Trials
By testing multiple treatments in a single patient, hyperindividualized trial designs could offer more information about treatment efficacy in each participant, and about heterogeneity within and between patients.
Infographic: Neoantigen Prediction for Personalized Vaccine Design
Infographic: Neoantigen Prediction for Personalized Vaccine Design
Infographic: Neoantigen Prediction for Personalized Vaccine Design
See how a computational pipeline uses next-generation sequencing data to identify genetic alterations that produce cancer-specific antigens.
Infographic: Gut Microbes Change How Well Drugs Work
Infographic: Gut Microbes Change How Well Drugs Work
Infographic: Gut Microbes Change How Well Drugs Work
Our resident bacteria can affect the activity of immunotherapies and other medicines in the body.
Infographic: DNA Detection with a Chip
Infographic: DNA Detection with a Chip
Infographic: DNA Detection with a Chip
Researchers combine CRISPR technology with a graphene transistor to create an electronic sensor for particular DNA sequences.
Infographic: A 3-D Printed Brain Tumor
Infographic: A 3-D Printed Brain Tumor
Infographic: A 3-D Printed Brain Tumor
How researchers create a glioblastoma on a chip that can predict patients’ response to treatments
Table: Personalized Cancer Vaccine Trials in the United States
Table: Personalized Cancer Vaccine Trials in the United States
Table: Personalized Cancer Vaccine Trials in the United States
There are currently more than two dozen ongoing Phase 1 and Phase 2 trials using different vaccine platforms such as DNA, RNA, synthetic long peptides, and dendritic cells.