A team of international experts has published a roadmap for creating a digital twin of the immune system. Patterned after digital twins used in industry to test innovations on a model, the digital twin would create a virtual immune system tailored to individuals. Physicians could use this model to develop precision treatments based on a person's genetics and personal history. It could answer questions why some people react differently to COVID-19 infection, for example, or design precise immunosuppressant therapy for transplant patients, or allow pharmaceutical companies to more quickly bring drugs to market.
- npj Digital Medicine
- NIH/National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation
Real data gathered by volunteers was combined with new computer models for the first time to reveal which UK moth species are struggling to expand into new regions and the landscape barriers restricting their movement. Farmland and suburban moths were found to be struggling most, with hills or regions with variable temperatures acting as barriers. This has implications for British wildlife being forced to move to adapt to climate change, and habitat restoration in challenging areas could help wildlife movement.
- Global Change Biology
- NERC, UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship, Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Satellites and drones can provide key information to protect pollinators.
- Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution
As the public grows more concerned about plastic pollution, some elected officials are getting onboard with “advanced recycling,” which is being promoted by industry groups. Although this process might sound like a good way to deal with the plastics problem, environmental advocates warn that it’s not all it’s cracked up to be, according to a cover story in Chemical & Engineering News, an independent news outlet of the American Chemical Society.
- Chemical & Engineering News
Newly developed flexible, porous and highly sensitive nitrogen dioxide sensors that can be applied to skin and clothing have potential applications in health care, environmental health monitoring and military use, according to researchers.
- ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces
Boston University has been at the forefront of an international effort to combat antimicrobial resistance (AMR), leading CARB-X, a nonprofit partnership that channels funding and expertise to companies developing life-saving new antibiotics, vaccines, and rapid diagnostics. Now, CARB-X is receiving up to $370 million in additional funding. The Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), part of the US Department of Health and Human Services, will provide CARB-X up to $300 million over 10 years. Wellcome, a global charitable foundation that supports biomedical research, will provide up to $70 million over three years.
- Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, Wellcome Trust