Repairing pig cells and Pelosi’s trip fallout


The news: A new system called OrganEx halted the deterioration of pig organ cells within an hour of the animal’s death, a finding that suggests cells do not die as quickly as previously understood. The technology successfully restored blood circulation and repaired damaged cells in the pigs.

Why it matters: Experts have described the research as “truly remarkable”, adding that if scientists are able to intervene and prevent permanent cell failure, it raises serious questions about how we define biological death. The study could pave the way for making human organs more viable for transplant by making them last longer and in better condition after removal, and could also help develop methods to treat strokes and heart attacks.

What’s next?: The team is planning future animal studies, and an obvious next step is to try to study whether organs treated with OrganEx are viable for transplantation. While they stress that the technology is not yet ready for use in humans, they are cautiously optimistic that the system could save organs that would otherwise have been unusable. Read the whole story.

—Rhiannon Williams

Required readings

I’ve combed the internet to find you the funniest/important/scary and fascinating stories about technology.

1 Chinese social media users mock their government
They were angry that officials did not stop Nancy Pelosi’s plane from landing in Taiwan. (NYT$)
+ Now that he is leaving, China has begun a series of military exercises near Taiwan. (BBC)

2 The law is coming for cryptocurrency scammers
But it remains to be seen if they are really punished or not. (Recode)
+ However, more major hacks have left the industry shaken. (WP$)
+ Elizabeth Warren takes aim at banks’ crypto legal guidelines. (Bloomberg$)
+ After all, framed NFT art isn’t a fun icebreaker at parties. (via cable $)

3 The far right is trying to recruit children online
Extremist ideology thrives in online games and chat rooms. (The Guardian)
+ Here’s a schoolboy’s experience of being seduced by far-right content. (The Guardian)

4 Black creators feel disturbed by an app that promised them riches
Triller tempted them away from arch rival TikTok, but rarely delivered on its promise. (WP$)
+ The issue of white supremacy on social media is being laid bare at the Jan. 6 hearings. (fast company $)

5 The price of virtual land in the metaverse has dropped 🏠
Who could have seen this coming?! (The $ info)
+ What a shame, we’ll have to wait until the date in the metaverse. (Insider)
+ Metaverse is a new word for an old idea. (MIT Technology Review)

6 High-tech surveillance doesn’t stop people from crossing the Mexican border
However, it makes the walk much more dangerous. (The edge)

7 Apple’s HR department is failing women
Employees claim the company is fostering a toxic, male-centric work environment. (FT$)

8 Gig economy runners are suffering from the intense heat 🚴
But for many, long shifts are the only way to guarantee a steady wage. (sieved)

9 An AI trained on 4chan learned to broadcast misogynistic hate speech
Precisely, to the surprise of no one. (Blackboard)
+ Artificial intelligence still hurts to moderate hate speech. (MIT Technology Review)

10 We don’t know why some bats live so long 🦇
Discovering ourselves can also help us live longer. (IEEE Spectrum)
+ The bat brain predicts its next move during flight. (MIT Technology Review)

quote of the day

“I’ve tried three courses and an expert on the side, and all I got out of it was an empty wallet.”

—Scott Mitchell, 33, tells the New York Times how he invested $15,000 in programs that promised tips on how to get rich on YouTube, but did nothing in the process.

The great story



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