While replacing the infection-causing genes inside an ordinarily harmful retrovirus with helpful genetic material is a relatively common research practice, David Sanders and his colleagues have gone a step beyond this technique.Link Discuss (Thanks, John!)
The group, which also includes Anthony Sanchez of the Centers for Disease Control and Purdue graduate student Scott Jeffers, has hit upon a way to simplify Ebola's outer shell as well, rendering it more easily produced in a laboratory and more effective at delivering genes to defective cells. Since unmodified Ebola enters through, and attacks, the lungs, defective lung cells could benefit most from therapy based on this discovery.
I write books. My latest is a YA science fiction novel called Homeland (it's the sequel to Little Brother). More books: Rapture of the Nerds (a novel, with Charlie Stross); With a Little Help (short stories); and The Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow (novella and nonfic). I speak all over the place and I tweet and tumble, too.