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Fundamental bioscience news

Europe’s ash dieback epidemic could well have been caused by just one or two mushroom-like fruiting bodies of a fungal pathogen from Asia, according to a comprehensive genome sequencing effort published in Nature Ecology & Evolution. This leaves even the most resistant ash trees at threat from the introduction of just one more spore from East Asia.


For the first time, researchers led by Professor Munir Iqbal at The Pirbright Institute have been able to insert protective avian influenza virus genes into the DEV vaccine virus by using a method of CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing that allows higher rates of gene insertion. This makes the process more efficient and the resulting vaccine virus is able to protect ducks against both DEV and avian influenza.


A cheap, safe and effective method of dealing with harmful algal blooms is on the verge of being introduced following successful field and lab tests. Moves to adopt use of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) as an effective treatment against toxic algae are already underway following the results of new research by a team from the John Innes Centre and the University of East Anglia (UEA.)