—Or a Total Disaster. Why is the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency developing a controversial, cutting-edge brain chip technology that could one day treat everything from major depressive disorder to hand cramps?

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Can Craig Venter Cheat Death?

February 21, 2017

“In Vietnam, I used to do autopsies on 18-to-22-year-olds, and a lot of them had cardiovascular disease,” J. Craig Venter, the architect of the process, says with a shrug, before adding, ominously, “We find things. The question is what you do with it.”

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Marlene McCarthy’s breast cancer has grown relentlessly over the past seven years, spreading painfully through her bones and making it impossible to walk without a cane. Although the 73-year-old knows there’s no cure for her disease, she wants researchers to do better

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In the new work, led by investigators at the Salk Institute, researchers injected days-old pig embryos with human pluripotent stem cells. By the time the fetal pigs were aborted, they had begun to grow partly human organs

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Experts are renewing calls to allow experiments on embryos beyond 14 days of development, saying it would drive medical breakthroughs

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The Obama administration has dropped a controversial proposal that would have required all federally funded scientists to get permission from patients before using their cells, blood, tissue or DNA for research. says Debra Mathews, a bioethicist at Johns Hopkins, expressed concern “We know that trust is a critical factor in folks participating in research, and we’ve seen in recent years the impact of when that trust is breached…”

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In 2001, President George W. Bush issued an executive order banning federal funding for new sources of stem cells developed from preimplantation human embryos. The action stalled research and discouraged scientists. Five years later, a Kyoto University scientist, Shinya Yamanaka, and his graduate student, Kazutoshi Takahashi, re-energized the field by devising a technique to “reprogram” any adult cell

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Kathy L. Hudson, Ph.D., and Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D.: The Cures Act, formally known as H.R. 34 or the 21st Century Cures Act,1 passed overwhelmingly in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate in the waning days of the 114th Congress and was signed into law by President Barack Obama on December 13, 2016

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