A newly approved gene therapy cures blindness -- but it costs nearly $1M

When Elizabeth Guardino brought home her newborn from the hospital, he seemed a healthy, bright-eyed boy. But three months later, she realized something was amiss – Christian was unable to track objects placed in front of him and had developed no facial recognition. Guardino knew something was horribly wrong and she needed to act quickly. He was diagnosed with a rare retinal disease called Leber congenital amaurosis, or LCA, and he spend nearly a decade in the dark. “People born with this [mut

Pennsylvania's proposed $540 million nuclear bailout sparks national debate

MIDDLETOWN, Pa. -- The clock is ticking for Pennsylvania lawmakers, who must decide whether to support House Bill 11, the bill introduced by Rep. Tom Mehaffie, R-Dauphin, that would commit $500 million annually to rescue the state’s struggling nuclear industry over the next six years. If approved, it would effectively save two of the state’s five nuclear plants, Three Mile Island (TMI) and Beaver Valley, which both have announced plans to close years before their operating licenses expire. The

Lordstown, Ohio, ponders life after General Motors' departure

LORDSTOWN, Ohio -- Turnpike Exit 216 is still marked by large signs that read, “Lordstown Home of the Cruze.” This is where, for decades, General Motors manufactured a series of vehicles, including its popular Chevy Cruze. Now, the 6.2 million-square-foot General Motor plant sits idle. Lots once filled with workers and inventory are now vacant. Small signs lining the fences read, “Save Our Plant.” GM closed the Lordstown General Motor plant last week as part of a major company overhaul that wi

NJ teens that tweeted their civil rights bill into law will now lobby for federal funding

HIGHTSTOWN, N.J. -- For three years, teens at Hightstown High School worked to turn a school project into federal law. They researched endlessly, drafted legislation and even tweeted to President Trump. Last month, Trump signed the bill they helped create into law -- and these teenagers became an important part of history. The bill set up a review board to examine unsealed and unredacted records of civil rights crimes. The effort started when they began studying the civil rights era during an

Pennsylvania landfills raise a stink in a New Jersey town

MORRISVILLE, Pa. -- Quaint, close-knit – and stinky – are three words residents in Bordentown, New Jersey, have used to describe their community in recent months. “I'll step outside and a waft of garbage will hit me in the face,” said resident Kristian Jobes. Jobes, like many concerned community members, has taken to Facebook to alert city officials of the “rotten egg” odor hovering over at least a square mile. According to Jobes, the smell lingers over houses, playgrounds and schools, and th

Scientists hope bacteria could be the cure for potholes

PHILADELPHIA -- A shattering drop, slight jolt, and then an inevitable headache: Parking lot attendee Juan Macklin recounts his daily work commute avoiding potholes. “It’s rough, there are so many,” he said. “When it begins to snow, you can’t even see them.” For many drivers across the nation, February marks the beginning of a long, treacherous pothole-filled journey of winter road mayhem. But what if a new technology could eliminate potholes all together? Researchers at Drexel University are

More support animals seen on college campuses despite national debate

PHILADELPHIA -- For Sam Hojnowski, her freshman year at La Salle University was challenging. There were some mornings where her anxiety kept her in bed. But now, her 9-month-old kitty, Lace, has helped ease those worries. “Having an animal really helps my anxiety and my mental health,” said the college sophomore. Emotional-support animals continue to make headlines in airplanes (remember the peacock? And the flying turkey? And the squirrel?), forcing airlines to overhaul its policies. Now, co

Partial government shutdown turns off taps for many craft breweries

PHILADELPHIA -- Kevin Walter and his wife, Melissa, opened their dream brewhouse in the Callowhill section of Philadelphia less than a year ago. But for the past month they, like other craft brewery owners, have been on edge as the federal government shutdown has turned off the tap for many breweries across the nation. “Without having our labels approved we can’t produce new beer, which means we can’t sell new beer,” Walter said. “And selling new beer is sort of a craft brewers niche, it’s what

Youth solitary confinement continues despite ongoing criticism

PHILADELPHIA -- Marcus Muray was 17 when he found himself in isolation after an altercation during a riot at a juvenile detention center he was being held in. He was transferred to an adult jail, stripped of his clothing, and placed in solitary confinement for 72 hours. In order to keep him from adults, he was kept in a small cell, away from all other inmates. The now 21-year-old Philadelphia native said that moment still haunts him. “I was in a cell all day, three meals, one 10-minute phone

New Jersey homeowner in fight with town over Christmas display raises thousands

OLD BRIDGE, N.J. — Bright lights illuminate the narrow street as hundreds of shivering visitors, sometimes as many as 1,000 a night, snap photos of a house that every year is converted into a dazzling winter wonderland. The 70,000 Christmas light display includes a cascading archway of lights, floating snowflakes and giant, twinkling trees. But the house is now in the middle of a Christmas controversy that has pitted the homeowner with the fed-up town – which has imposed a $2,000 a night fee to

Rural resort draws visitors by offering exotic, lap-of-luxury experience

Farmington is a rural town in western Pennsylvania with lush, rolling hills. It’s an hour south of Pittsburgh, its closest city. It is dotted with sparse ranches and miles of empty, desolate fields. But tucked in this town in rural America is an extravagant resort that draws at least 80,000 visitors a year – to this place in the middle of nowhere. The Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Farmington is a luxury resort that rivals five-star experiences in major cities like New York, Las Vegas and Los A

In West Virginia Senate race, coal mining takes center stage

Everyone in West Virginia has an opinion on Sen. Joe Manchin — some more than one. Manchin, a West Virginia local and a Democrat, is vying to secure his position against Republican candidate, Attorney General Patrick Morrisey in the Senate race. But first, the incumbent must reassure constitutes in his hometown that he stands with them on the “mountaineer” issue that to them matters most: coal. The senator who grew up in Farmington, West Virginia and served as the state’s governor says he’s de
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