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  Cancer Immunotherapy1)

  This therapy harnesses2) the immune system to battle tumors. Scientists have thought for decades that such an approach to cancer therapy should be possible, but it has been incredibly difficult to make it work. Now many oncologists3) say we have turned a corner4), because two different techniques are helping some patients. One involves antibodies that release a brake5) on T cells6), giving them the power to tackle tumors. Another involves genetically modifying an individual's T cells outside the body so that they are better able to target cancer, and then re-infusing7) them so they can do just that. We are still at the beginning of this story and only a very small proportion of cancer patients have received these therapies. But the results have been repeated at different centers and in different tumor types, giving doctors hope that immunotherapy for cancer may benefit more and more people in the future.
  Cloning Human Stem Cells
  After more than a decade of failures, researchers announced they had derived stem cells from cloned human embryos8). Such cells can develop into any of the body's cell types, and researchers hope to use them to study and treat diseases. Mice, pigs, dogs, and other animals have been cloned by the same technique used on Dolly the sheep9), but human cells have proved much trickier to work with. In 2013, a new recipe―including a dash of caffeine, which appears to stabilize key molecules in delicate10) human egg cells―solved the problem. Now researchers must determine how embryonic stem cells from the cloned embryos stack up against11) induced pluripotent stem cells12).
  Cosmic Particle Accelerator Identified
  Cosmic rays―high-energy protons13) and other particles from outer space―were first detected 100 years ago. Now researchers have finally nailed down14) solid evidence of where they come from. Theorists had long suspected that most are accelerated in the shock waves15) from massive exploding stars, or supernovae. If so, they reasoned, some of the particles must collide with atoms in space to produce subatomic particles called pions16), which would then decay17) into gamma rays. In 2013, the Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope spotted the telltale18) pion-decay signature in the debris19) from two supernovae.
  Newcomer to the Race to Harness Sunlight
  A new breed of materials for solar cells burst into the limelight20) in 2013. Known as perovskites21), they are cheap, easy to make, and already capable of converting 15 percent of the energy in sunlight to electricity. While that remains below the efficiency of commercial silicon solar cells, perovskites are improving fast. One particularly promising feature is that they can be layered on top of silicon solar-cell material to harness a range of wavelengths that neither could capture alone.   Genetic Microsurgery
  A year-old gene-editing technique called CRISPR touched off an explosion of research in 2013. It's short for "clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic22) repeats": repetitive stretches of DNA that bacteria have evolved to combat predatory23) viruses by slicing up the viral24) genomes25). The "knife" is a protein called Cas9; in 2012, researchers showed they could use it as a scalpel26) to perform microsurgery on genes. In 2013, the new technology became red-hot, as more than a dozen teams wielded27) it to manipulate specific genes in mice, rats, bacteria, yeast, zebrafish, nematodes28), fruit flies, plants, and human cells, paving the way for understanding how these genes function and possibly harnessing them to improve health.
  To Sleep, Perhaps to Clean
  Scientists have long speculated that one of the functions of sleep is to restore and repair the brain, but whether this is a "core" purpose of sleep remains controversial. In 2013, researchers found direct experimental evidence that the mouse brain cleans itself during sleep, by expanding channels between neurons that allow an influx29) of cerebrospinal fluid30). The fluid flushes out detritus31) such as amyloid32) proteins, which accumulate as plaques33) in Alzheimer's disease, twice as fast when mice are sleeping as when they are awake.
  2013年,一种新型太阳能电池材料突然成为关注的焦点,这就是钙钛矿太阳能电池。 钙钛矿太阳能电池成本低廉,易于制造,目前已能够将15%的太阳能转换成电能。尽管该效能仍然低于商用硅太阳能电池,但钙钛矿太阳能电池发展迅猛,且具有一个十分有发展前景的特点,即可以将其铺在硅太阳能电池材料上面,以此将两者单独使用时无法吸取的一段波长的太阳能转化为电能。
  2013年,问世仅一年的基因编辑技术CRISPR掀起了一股科研狂潮。CRISPR为“规律成簇间隔短回文重复序列”的缩略语,是指细菌进化而来的一段DNA重复序列,可通过切割病毒基因组的方式抵御攻击性病毒。切割病毒基因组的这把“刀”是一种名叫Cas9的蛋白质。2012年,研究人员发现,他们可将Cas9蛋白质用作“手术刀”对基因进行显微外科手术。2013年,这项新技术成为一个研究热点,超过12个研究团队利用该技术来操纵小鼠、老鼠、细菌、酵母、斑马鱼、线虫、果蝇、植物和人类细胞的特定基因,为进一步了解这些基因的运作机制甚至利用这些基因来改善机体健康做好准备。   大脑可能在利用睡眠进行“大扫除”
  1. immunotherapy [??mj?n???θ?r?p?] n.【医】免疫疗法
  2. harness [?h�?n?s] vt. 利用(或控制)……以产生动力,利用
  3. oncologist [???k?l?d??st] n. 肿瘤学家
  4. turn a corner: 进入一个新的局面(阶段、时期)
  5. brake [bre?k] n. 起抑制作用的因素,约束
  6. T cell: T细胞,一种多能干细胞,具有细胞免疫和免疫调节功能。
  7. infuse [?n?fju?z] vt. 把……注入
  8. embryo [?embri??] n. 胚胎
  9. Dolly the sheep: 克隆羊多莉,是1996年英国科学家克隆成功的一头母羊,标志着科学界克隆成就的一大飞跃。
  10. delicate [?del?k?t] adj. 纤弱的
  11. stack up against: 与……较量,争胜负
  12. induced pluripotent stem cell: 诱导性多能干细胞,指通过诱导重新编程技术将细胞转变为类似胚胎干细胞的多能干细胞。
  13. proton [?pr??t?n] n. 质子
  14. nail down: 弄清;确定
  15. shock wave: 激波,又称冲击波,是气体、液体和固体介质中压强、密度和温度在波阵面上发生突跃变化的压缩波。在超声速流动、爆炸等过程中都会出现激波。
  16. pion [?pa??n] n. π介子
  17. decay [d??ke?] vi.【物】(放射性物质等)衰减,衰变
  18. telltale [?telte?l] adj. 能证明(某事)存在的
  19. debris [?debri?] n. (被毁物的)残骸;瓦砾
  20. limelight [?la?mla?t] n. 公众注意的中心
  21. perovskite [p??r?vska?t] n. 钙钛矿
  22. palindromic [?p?l?n'dr?m?k] adj. 回文结构的
  23. predatory [?pred?tri] adj. (动物或其习性)以捕食其他动物为生的;掠夺(性)的
  24. viral [?va?r?l] adj. 【医】病毒(性)的;病毒引起的
  25. genome [?d?i?n??m]
  26. scalpel [?sk?lp?l] n. 解剖刀,一种外科手术刀
  27. wield [wi?ld] vt. 挥;操;使用
  28. nematode [?nem?t??d] n.【动】线虫
  29. influx [??nfl?ks] n. 流入,注入;涌进
  30. cerebrospinal fluid: 脑脊(髓)液
  31. detritus [d??tra?t?s] n. 残余物
  32. amyloid [??m??l??d] adj. 淀粉状的
  33. plaque [pl?k] n.【医】血小板;斑。这里指大脑组织中的噬斑。

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