In the wake of Flint, Columbia Public Schools to test its water for lead

COLUMBIA — The Columbia Public School district plans to conduct lead testing of the drinking water in all the district’s buildings over the summer. The school district, which enrolls more than 17,000 K-12 students and 680 preschoolers, is taking action following the discovery of lead-tainted drinking water in Flint, Michigan. “This (testing) is to create a consistent baseline for all our…

Gene editing holds promise as animal disease prevention of the future

  The disease first appeared in Brent Sandidge’s farm in 1992, back when it was still called “mystery swine disease.” Sandidge wasn’t fully aware yet of how this disease would plague him over the next two decades, how he would watch countless pigs succumb, becoming feverish, refusing food and failing to reproduce. He vaccinated his…

Professionals don’t necessarily agree on the best standards to screen for breast cancer

COLUMBIA – About one in eight women will develop some kind of invasive breast cancer in her lifetime, according to the American Cancer Society. Finding those cancers isn’t always easy, especially with the current technology used to screen for them. Conventional mammograms have been plagued for years by concerns of false positives. In regular digital scans, images of…

Genetic engineering could stop the spread of mosquito-borne illnesses – but should we use it?

By Lauren Puckett An epic battle has been growing for decades: Human versus mosquito. Humans attack with poisons, insecticides, vaccinations and medications, but more than one million people worldwide still die from mosquito-borne illnesses every year.  Today, we have the technology to fight these diseases, and it’s called genetic modification. Gene technologies, developed by mosquito…