Thursday, April 15, 2010

A News Sonnet A Day for April 2010: 15

I've set myself a goal for National Poetry Month this year: Compose a sonnet based on a science-themed news story each day.

Today's installment takes its cue from "Freeing human eggs of mutant mitochondria" by Alla Katsnelson in Nature.

In Development

A sperm and egg contribute nuclei,
Which fuse to help an embryo begin.
But mitochondria will also lie
Inside the egg, its DNA within.

Mutations can affect that DNA,
Producing mitochondrial disease.
Now British scientists have found a way
To transfer parent nuclei, which frees

Their genes from the affected organelle,
With high-risk cytoplasm left behind.
But will it lead to offspring that are well?
That's what this nascent research tries to find.

In principle, they've shown the technique sound,
Though questions populate this fertile ground.

Elissa Malcohn's Deviations and Other Journeys
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