November 2015

Mutations in BRCA genes predispose women to cancer, but outside influences shape the ultimate risk

Some of the disparity in the risk from BRCA mutations is generational. One repeated finding is that, by age 50, mutation carriers born in the early twentieth century seem to have a lower risk of cancer than those born later3. The pattern suggests that outside influences interact with genes, and that something in the environment has changed in an unfavourable way. If researchers can figure out what those influences ar
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How the western diet has derailed our evolution – Nautilus

For the microbiologist Justin Sonnenburg, that career-defining moment—the discovery that changed the trajectory of his research, inspiring him to study how diet and native microbes shape our risk for disease—came from a village in the African hinterlands. A group of Italian microbiologists had compared the intestinal microbes of young villagers in Burkina Faso with those of children in Florence, Italy. The villagers,
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