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The 7 greatest scientific advances of 2018

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Find here a list of some of the most important scientific advances of the year

The 7 greatest scientific advances of 2018

2018 has been a very busy year that has left us with great discoveries and numerous scientific investigations that will transform the way we live. Here, we give you a list of the most important, which includes those highlighted by the annual report of the journal Science:

1. New medicines: according to Science, one of the breakthroughs is the creation of new drugs based on gene silencing. They use the RNA interference (RNAi) to inactivate the production of defective proteins, which can end up causing diseases and thus avoid ailments in places like the liver, heart, or eyes.

Leer en español: Los 7 avances científicos más grandes del 2018

2. Genetically modified babies: one of the most recent advances was the creation of the first genetically modified babies, at the end of November, using the CRISPR-Cas 9 technique. Chinese scientist He Jiankui, professor at the University of Shenzhen, in China, announced the birth of twins whose DNA was modified to be resistant to the HIV virus, generating a worldwide debate on scientific ethics.

3. Harassment in science: Science qualifies the report of the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine as historic. The investigation focused on sexual harassment of women who work, research and study in these areas, a subject that has been ignored for many years.

The report concluded that between 20% and 50% of students as well as more than half of female teachers and staff have suffered sexual harassment, including both verbal and non-verbal sexist hostility.

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4. New organ: this year there was the discovery of a new organ in the human body. In May, according to the ABC newspaper, several scientists from the University School of Medicine in New York (USA) discovered the so-called "interstitium", a network of connecting tissues that are located under the skin and that cover the digestive tract, lungs, arteries and muscles. The interstitium is the source of lymph, vital fluid for the functioning of immune cells, says Scientific Reports.

5. Protection of privacy: within the list of the most revolutionary scientific advances of 2018 of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), included the technology 'blockchain', which allows for anonymous transactions that can not be tracked and significantly improved security online.

6. Artificial embryos: the creation of structures similar to embryos by researchers from the University of Cambridge was included in the MIT list, without the need for ovules or sperm, only stem cells.

7. Arrival in the sun: the Parker Solar Probe mission was "historic" for the field of science and engineering. The probe started in August and is the object created by the man who has most approached the Sun.

 

LatinAmerican Post | Luisa Báez
Translated from "Los 7 avances científicos más grandes de 2018"

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