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Happy 2019. Here Are Our Top Stories for 2018.


(A. Kotok)

1 Jan. 2019. As we begin 2019, let’s take a look back to the 5 stories on Science & Enterprise that captured the attention of most readers. Using the countdown method, suitable for celebrating the new year …

5. Smart Thermometer Data Speed Flu Forecasting
9 February 2018. Data collected from electronic thermometers are shown by researchers to track and report the spread of influenza cases in the U.S. faster than federal health authorities, as well as provide more up-to-date forecasts. A team from University of Iowa in Iowa City, working with the company Kinsa Inc. in San Francisco, report their findings in yesterday’s issue of the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases (paid subscription required).

4. Soil Microbes Yield Rich Antibiotic Sources
14 June 2018. A group of geo- and bioscience researchers analyzed microbes residing in soil under northern California and discovered many new potential sources of antibiotics, well beyond current sources. The team from University of California in Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory report their findings in yesterday’s issue of the journal Nature (paid subscription required).

3. Patent Set for Peptide Nerve Damage Treatments
14 August 2017. The European Patent Office announced its intent to award a patent on treatments for nerve cell damage based on the peptide thymosin beta 4. The patent will be awarded to Michael Chopp, a neuroscience researcher at Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, which licensed his discoveries to the company RegeneRx Biopharmaceuticals Inc. in Rockville, Maryland.

2. Gates, Lauder Backing Early Alzheimer’s Biomarker Tests
17 July 2018. A group of well-known philanthropists is backing a new research program to find simple tests that reveal early indicators of Alzheimer’s disease in a person’s molecular make-up. Funding for the initiative known as Diagnostics Accelerator is expected to reach $30 million, with initial contributions from Microsoft founder Bill Gates, former Estée Lauder chair Leonard Lauder, and other family foundations.

1. Brain Wave Data Harnessed for Open-Source Brain Model
2 February 2018. A lab in Germany created a technique for discovering a person’s neurological patterns from brain waves captured with a headset and simulated with population-wide brain data run on open-source software. A team from Charité – Universitätsmedizin in Berlin published an advance copy of its findings in the journal eLife (free registration required), and are preparing a mobile app to make the technique widely available.

Note that the third most-read story is from 2017, which shows its continuing interest to visitors.

And here’s my personal favorite, with original reporting that beat most other media …

Personalized Breast Cancer Trial Advances 7 Drugs
12 September 2018. A clinical trial with a design that allows for changes in its processes to meet the needs of individual patients says its results helped advance 7 new drugs for breast cancer into review by FDA. Leaders and participants in the I-SPY2 Trial described progress made by the study in a news conference today in Washington, D.C.

Many thanks to the nearly 31,500 individuals that stopped by Science & Enterprise last year, who viewed 59,300 pages on our site. We look forward to an even better 2019.

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