Posts tagged ‘molecular biology’
Did you enjoy this video? Please send us a comment if you know of other great lab tricks that you would like to shar.
Today, Forbes magazine published a fantastic review on a breakthrough technology that can be used for multiplex editing of DNA on a genomewide scale. The article was based on a study out of the well-respected lab of George Church, who can easily be described as one of the father’s of personalized genomics. The paper, which was published in Science earlier this year, describes how the Church lab modified an adaptive bacterial immune defense system to specifically target genomic sequences of interest allowing them to be modified as desired.
Essentially, a series of clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) were engineered to bind to guide RNA sequences (gRNA) which in turn produces an RNA-guided editing tool for facile, robust, and multiplexable human genome engineering.
The Forbes article eloquently discusses the history associated with this discovery, competing technologies (such as zinc finger nucleases), as well as the commendable collaborative efforts that went into supporting this discovery by Church’s colleagues world-wide.
When the study was first released, it made scandalous headlines claiming that Church was trying to create Neanderthal babies. While such headlines are indicative of Church’s legendary status as a scientific icon among the general population, it certainly does not diminish from the incredible potential this technology adds to the toolbox of every-day genetic engineers.
For a full look at the Forbes article, read This Protein Could Change Biotech Forever.
Can you find the Bio-Rad product at 15:33? (hint: it is quite ancient!)
I’m not sure about you, but it wasn’t until I began my graduate degree that I started becoming serious about science. Of course I was a science enthusiast beforehand (why else would I have pursued a graduate degree) but something about the dry lecture style of my profs left me feeling very tired after most lectures. If I only had a more engaging prof or entertaining text book…..well, now there’s a tool professors can use to grab the attention of even the most distracted undergrad.
Every once in a while you come across something truly different that just makes you say “wow!” No Starch Press has just released the Manga Guide to Molecular Biology. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Manga, it is a very popular Japanese comic book style that is generating over $175 Million/year in sales in North America. In the Manga Guide to Molecular Biology, readers are treated to a comic book story line where they follow high-school girls Rin and Ami on their adventures inside the human body. This is a great tool for learning about all the basics of molecular biology including DNA, RNA, proteins, transcription, translation, cloning and more!
If you want to hear a firsthand review of the book checkout the video review below: