By Caroline F. ’23
These days it may seem like the media is dominated by politics and other current crises and while these are important in the world, it is just as important to acknowledge the positive stories that may be overshadowed. This week, we would like to share with you a couple of stories that may help to lighten your day and give you a better understanding of the positive news going on around us. Thank you and please enjoy!
Nobel Prize in Chemistry – Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna
This past week, for the first time in history, two women won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for their work with the gene-editing tool CRISPR/Cas9. The technology, which is often referred to as genetic scissors, is able to change the DNA in plants, animals, and other organisms and its applications may lead to many new discoveries regarding inherited diseases. The research was first published by Charpentier in 2011, and she later partnered with Doudna to create the technology. Their work allows scientists to alter strands of DNA at specific points, making them able to cut out unwanted molecules.
In its press release, the Nobel Prize committee stressed the importance of this discovery, saying it “contributed to many important discoveries in basic research, and plant researchers have been able to develop crops that withstand mould, pests and drought. In medicine, clinical trials of new cancer therapies are underway, and the dream of being able to cure inherited diseases is about to come true.” Not only is this a significant step in advancing science, but it also is a major win for women in STEM and beyond!
Also to note: the Nobel Prize in literature went to Louise Glück who currently lives in Cambridge!
India Plans to Replace Coal Power Plants
On Tuesday, October 5 India’s Minister of Power, R. K. Singh announced that they plan to retire many of their coal power plants and opt for ones that utilize renewable energy in order to reach their green energy targets. By 2030, the Indian government plans to get 40% of their energy from sources other than fossil fuels. India is the second-highest coal-consumer in the world, so this shift is a major step towards global renewable energy.
Ocean Spray Gives Tiktok-Viral Man a New Car
Many may have seen Nathan Apodaca’s viral Tiktok of him skateboarding down a street listening to Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams” and drinking Ocean Spray Cranberry Juice. The video itself has racked up more than 7 million likes, and even the lead singer of Fleetwood Mac, Mick Fleetwood, recreated it with his own video. As a bit of appreciation for Apodaca, Ocean Spray gave him a brand-new red pick-up truck and enough cranberry juice to fill the back of it!