The top 10 health and medicine breakthroughs of 2021

The Ellume at-home COVID-19 test was the first of its kind to get FDA authorization, allowing consumers to check their COVID-19 status without going to the doctor.

(Claire Maldarelli, Rebecca Sohn/ Popular Science) — Never in recent history has the world been so engrossed by the most mundane stages of the scientific process. But for the last two years, each incremental step in science—from lab research to understand the evolution of COVID-19 and develop a vaccine to fight it, to clinical trials, to pharmaceutical approval—meant one thing: Hope.

And that’s what this list of the year’s best health innovations highlights. In addition to two novel vaccines released to combat the most deadly pandemic of our time, the world also saw the first-ever drug approved to treat rare progeria, a new insulin formulation that might finally make the life-saving therapy affordable for all, and a malaria vaccine decades in the making. (…)