AS WEEDS GO, Arabidopsis thaliana is a rather charming specimen. On a spring day, you might see it sprouting from the cracks of a parking lot, unleashing a small riot of white flowers that give it the common name “mouse ear cress.” But its rotund leaves often bear unwelcome passengers: among them, a bacteria called Pseudomonas syringae. It sits there looking for a way into the plant, usually the stomata through which the leaf takes in water and carbon dioxide, or through a wound. That’s when things get interesting.
Tag Archives: biotechnology
Plan to Build a Genetic Noah’s Ark Includes a Staggering 66,000 Species
An international consortium involving over 50 institutions has announced an ambitious project to assemble high-quality genome sequences of all 66,000 vertebrate species on Earth, including all mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fish. With an estimated total cost of $600 million dollars, it’s a project of biblical proportions. Continue reading Plan to Build a Genetic Noah’s Ark Includes a Staggering 66,000 Species
Living Bacteria Can Now Store Data
Using the CRISPR gene-editing tool, scientists from Harvard University have developed a technique that permanently records data into living cells. Incredibly, the information imprinted onto these microorganisms can be passed down to the next generation.
Experts Held a Secret Meeting to Consider Building a Human Genome From Scratch
Earlier this week, over a hundred scientists, lawyers, and entrepreneurs gathered to discuss the radical possibility of creating a synthetic human genome. Strangely, journalists were not invited, and attendees were told to keep a tight lip. Which, given the weighty subject matter, is obvious cause for concern.
Continue reading Experts Held a Secret Meeting to Consider Building a Human Genome From Scratch
HIV Genes Successfully Edited Out of Immune Cells
Researchers from Temple University have used the CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing tool to clear out the entire HIV-1 genome from a patient’s infected immune cells. It’s a remarkable achievement that could have profound implications for the treatment of AIDS and other retroviruses.
Continue reading HIV Genes Successfully Edited Out of Immune Cells
Scientists Create Injectable Foam To Repair Degenerating Bones
Researchers in France have developed a self-setting foam that can repair defects in bones and assist growth. Eventually, this advanced biomaterial could be used to quickly regenerate bone growth and treat degenerative diseases such as osteoporosis.
Continue reading Scientists Create Injectable Foam To Repair Degenerating Bones
Mapping the 88 Million Ways That Humans Are Genetically Different
An international team of scientists has scanned the genomes of 2,504 people from around the world to create the world’s largest catalog of human genetic variation (HGV). The extensive database will help them understand why some people are susceptible to certain diseases.
Continue reading Mapping the 88 Million Ways That Humans Are Genetically Different