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DNA Microscopy, AI Names, and Squirrel Counting: Lux Recommends #187

By Sam Arbesman, PhD

Welcome to Lux Recommends #187, this week’s edition of what we at Lux are reading and thinking about (want to receive this by email? Sign up here).

“DNA Microscopy” Offers Entirely New Way to Image Cells: “Rather than relying on optics, the microscopy system offers a chemically encoded way to map biomolecules’ relative positions.” — Adam G

A New Approach to Treat Mental Illness: Electrical EngineeringAdam G

AIs named by AIs: “A reader named Kelly sent me a list of 236 of Iain M. Banks’s Culture ship names from Wikipedia, and I trained the 345 million-parameter version of GPT-2 on them” — Sam

Hijack of CRISPR defences by selfish genes holds clinical promise: “Parasitic genetic elements called transposons carry CRISPR machinery that is normally used against them by bacterial cells. This paradox has now been explained, with implications for gene-therapy research.” — Adam G

Volunteers Counted All the Squirrels in Central Park: “Three hundred people tallied up the number of bushy-tailed residents over the course of 11 days last October” — Sam

Discovery of performance-enhancing bacteria in the human microbiome: “A single microbe accumulating in the microbiome of elite athletes can enhance exercise performance in mice, paving the way to highly-validated performance-enhancing probiotics” — Lux Recommends reader Greg Greenberg

20 American Die Each Day Waiting for Organs. Can Pigs Save Them? “Thanks to genetically engineered pigs, the donor-organ shortage could soon be a thing of the past.” — Adam G

The war to free science: “How librarians, pirates, and funders are liberating the world’s academic research from paywalls.” — Adam G

And These Pictures Of American Malls In The 1980s Are Actually Incredible — Lux portfolio company Deep Sentinel co-founder Dave Selinger

Pro…skimming pebblesAdam K

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