The Download: the promise of stem cell treatments, and China’s screen time crackdown

When covid-19 began to spread, countries closed businesses and told people to stay home. Many thought that would be enough to stop the coronavirus. If we had paid more attention to pigs, we might have known better.

To prevent their animals contracting diseases, pig farmers employ measures familiar to anyone who has been avoiding covid-19, including contact tracing, disinfecting supplies, and requiring human workers to change clothes before entering a secure barn.

Now the Pig Improvement Company, in Hendersonville, Tennessee, is trying something different. Instead of trying to seal animals off from the environment, it’s changing the pigs themselves. It’s using CRISPR, the revolutionary gene scissors, to make piglets immune to deadly diseases. Read the full story.

—Antonio Regalado

We can still have nice things

A place for comfort, fun and distraction to brighten up your day. (Got any ideas? Drop me a line or tweet ’em at me.)

+ Get out of a cooking rut with these tips.
+ Cat lovers know… it really is just like that.
+ If you’re a fan of word games, this devilishly difficult semantics-based one will keep you busy. 
+ So much to love about these surfing dogs. (Thanks Stefan!)

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