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First time ever: Researchers rewrite an entire bacterial genome and add a healthy twist

First time ever: Researchers rewrite an entire bacterial genome and add a healthy twist | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it

Scientists from Yale and Harvard have recoded the entire genome of an organism and improved a bacterium’s ability to resist viruses, a dramatic demonstration of the potential of rewriting an organism’s genetic code.

“This is the first time the genetic code has been fundamentally changed,” said Farren Isaacs, assistant professor of molecular, cellular, and developmental biology at Yale and co-senior author of the research published Oct. 18 in the journal Science. “Creating an organism with a new genetic code has allowed us to expand the scope of biological function in a number of powerful ways.”

 

The creation of a genomically recoded organism raises the possibility that researchers might be able to retool nature and create potent new forms of proteins to accomplish a myriad purposes — from combating disease to generating new classes of materials.

 

The research — headed by Isaacs and co-author George Church of Harvard Medical School — is a product of years of studies in the emerging field of synthetic biology, which seeks to re-design natural biological systems for useful purposes.

 

In this case, the researchers changed fundamental rules of biology.

Proteins, which are encoded by DNA’s instructional manual and are made up of 20 amino acids, carry out many important functional roles in the cell. Amino acids are encoded by the full set of 64 triplet combinations of the four nucleic acids that comprise the backbone of DNA. These triplets (sets of three nucleotides) are called codons and are the genetic alphabet of life.

 

Isaacs, Jesse Rinehart of Yale, and the Harvard researchers explored whether they could expand upon nature’s handywork by substituting different codons or letters throughout the genome and then reintroducing entirely new letters to create amino acids not found in nature. This work marks the first time that the genetic code has been completely changed across an organism’s genome.

 

In the new study, the researchers working with E. coli swapped a codon and eliminated its natural stop sign that terminates protein production. The new genome enabled the bacteria to resist viral infection by limiting production of natural proteins used by viruses to infect cells. Isaacs — working with Marc Lajoie of Harvard, Alexis Rovner of Yale, and colleagues — then converted the “stop” codon into one that encodes new amino acids and inserted it into the genome in a plug-and-play fashion. 

 

The work now sets the stage to convert the recoded bacterium into a living foundry, capable of biomanufacturing new classes of  “exotic” proteins and polymers. These new molecules could lay the foundation for a new generation of materials, nanostructures, therapeutics, and drug delivery vehicles, Isaacs said.

 

“Since the genetic code is universal, it raises the prospect of recoding genomes of other organisms,” Isaacs said. “This has tremendous implications in the biotechnology industry and could open entirely new avenues of research and applications.”


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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odysseas spyroglou's curator insight, October 19, 2013 8:46 AM

The brave new world starts here. I hope we'll find our way to a less dystopian future.

Dmitry Alexeev's curator insight, October 20, 2013 4:18 AM

thats a new generation biological tool although there has been already attempts to encode non-standard amino acids - but never before on a full genome scale - intrestingle how soon wilkl this be available as a conventional instrument? this is a novel scientific tool - which will among others help us to study life

Leire Tapia's curator insight, October 21, 2013 4:08 PM

He elegido esta noticia porque la relaciono con la libertad de investigación. Es un derecho vinculado al ser humano y es un derecho exigible. Es también importante comunicar los resultados y no caer en el peligro de la censura. No hay que esconder lo que la ciencia descubre pero si es importante establecer límites relacionados con la protección de la salud y con la dignidad humana.

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33rd Square | Futuristic Tube Transport System Looks To Speed Passengers Around The Globe

33rd Square | Futuristic Tube Transport System Looks To Speed Passengers Around The Globe | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
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Aviation technology continues to drive auto innovation - Toronto Star

Aviation technology continues to drive auto innovation - Toronto Star | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it

From ABS to ESC to HUDs to aluminum bodies, airplane breakthroughs migrate to vehicles...


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Russell R. Roberts, Jr.'s curator insight, March 22, 8:44 PM

The bond between the aviation industry and ground transportation has been strong since the Wright brothers used their bicycle shop to design their first gliders and the famous Kittyhawk powered aircraft. One industry often fed the other with ideas, modifications, and special materials.  Aluminum car bodies, Heads Up Displays (HUD), and Automatic Braking Systems (ABS) have historical antecedents in the aviation industry.  Well-written article. Aloha, Russ.

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New ‘MIND’ diet may significantly protect against Alzheimer’s disease | KurzweilAI

New ‘MIND’ diet may significantly protect against Alzheimer’s disease | KurzweilAI | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
A new diet known by the acronym MIND (Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay) could significantly lower a person’s risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease (AD) — even if the diet is not meticulously followed, according to a paper published in the journal Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association.

This finding comes from a longitudinal study by Rush University Medical Center and Harvard School of Public Health of 923 volunteers (144 of them developed AD) shows that the MIND diet lowered the risk of AD by as much as 53 percent in participants who adhered to the diet rigorously, and by about 35 percent in those who followed it moderately well.

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Farmers of the Future Will Utilize Drones, Robots and GPS

Farmers of the Future Will Utilize Drones, Robots and GPS | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
A Texas A&M University biological and agricultural engineer shares the impact of precision technology on agriculture and what new technologies growers can anticipate in the future.

Via Stéphane Bisaillon, cafonso
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Nathaniel Pather's curator insight, March 25, 11:48 PM

Farming looks much more interesting to me now!

Ben Simpson's curator insight, March 27, 5:21 AM

Drones, Robots and AI are all near future technology that will help and benefit farmers in growing and supplying food and plants. This source goes into great detail on how this will work!

Brock Nicholls's curator insight, March 27, 9:40 AM

 Thomasson, A (20 March, 2015). Farmers of the Future will Utilize Drones, Robots and GPS. No-Till Farmer. http://www.no-tillfarmer.com/articles/4501-farmers-of-the-future-will-utilize-drones-robots-and-gps


This source discusses the benefits of utilizing Robots and Drones for farming purposes making it an easier task for the farmer as s/he won’t have to travel a huge area anymore. Shows insight and history of development through the engines and systems used in agriculture e.g from animal power to combustion engines.




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DNews: What the Future of Transportation Looks Like : DNews

DNews: What the Future of Transportation Looks Like : DNews | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
Newly released transportation concepts promise to move us around at unheard of speeds and in ways our great grandparents didn't even dream about. Trace shows us the most amazing concepts and highlights the one most likely to actually be built.
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A fully transparent solar cell that could make every window and screen a power source | ExtremeTech

A fully transparent solar cell that could make every window and screen a power source | ExtremeTech | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
Researchers at Michigan State University have created a fully transparent solar concentrator, which could turn any window or sheet of glass (like your smartphone's screen) into a photovoltaic solar cell. Unlike other 'transparent' solar cells that we've reported on in the past, which are actually quite colorful and opaque, this one really is transparen. The team are confident that the transparent solar panels can be efficiently deployed in a wide range of settings, from

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Next Big Future: Ten Kilowatts beamed 500 meters in a proof of concept for space based solar power

Next Big Future: Ten Kilowatts beamed 500 meters in a proof of concept for space based solar power | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI) has conducted ground demonstration testing of "wireless power transmission," a new technology presently under development to serve as the core technology of the space solar power systems (SSPS) that are expected to be the power generation systems of the future. With successful completion of the test at the company's Kobe Shipyard & Machinery Works, MHI has now verified the viability of long-distance wireless power transmission.
In the ground demonstration test, 10 kilowatts (kW) of power was sent from a transmitting unit by microwave. The reception of power was confirmed at a receiver unit located at a distance of 500 meters (m) away by the illumination of LED lights, using part of power transmitted.


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Chameleon-like artificial ‘skin’ shifts color on demand | KurzweilAI

Chameleon-like artificial ‘skin’ shifts color on demand | KurzweilAI | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
This chameleon-like artificial skin changes color as a tiny amount of force is applied (credit: The Optical Society/OSA) Engineers from the University of
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This Mirror House Is a Giant Optical Illusion

This Mirror House Is a Giant Optical Illusion | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
Most of us are content getting back to nature with a good ol' fashioned hiking or camping trip every now and again.

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This is How Google Will Control Project Loon Balloons' Altitudes

This is How Google Will Control Project Loon Balloons' Altitudes | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
Google has been granted a patent for its methods to control the altitude of its Project Loon balloons, which operate in the stratosphere over 12 miles (20 km) above sea level.

Via Official AndreasCY
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This Woman Flew an F-35 Simulator with Her Mind

This Woman Flew an F-35 Simulator with Her Mind | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
A patient for an experimental DoD robotics program, is breaking ground in freeing the mind from the limitations of the body.

Via Artur Coelho
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DARPA developing neural interface connected to your spine - Siliconrepublic.com

DARPA developing neural interface connected to your spine - Siliconrepublic.com | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
The US military’s advanced research division – DARPA – has revealed details of its ‘cortial modem’ which wants to turn the inside of the human eye into an advanced display powered by the spine.

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Are Algorithms Conceptual Art’s Next Frontier? by Nicholas O'Brien

Are Algorithms Conceptual Art’s Next Frontier? by Nicholas O'Brien | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it

In an essay titled What Can a Network do?,  Alexander Galloway discussed the need for humans to adopt machine-like capabilities for reading networks. Instead of treating a network as a text—as humanities scholars would want—we should instead read it as a machine would, through a process of parsing. This procedure takes data and sorts it into categories of relevance in order to create a meaningful analysis. The parsing machine par excellence is the algorithm, and it dominates much of our digital lives. In recent years, algorithms have been telling us what music to listen to, who we should date, what stocks we should buy, and even what we should eat. It comes as no surprise, then, that it should also tell us what art we should view. But what happens when the art we are looking at becomes the algorithm itself?


Via Jacques Urbanska, arslog
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A 3-D View of a Chart That Predicts The Economic Future: The Yield Curve

A 3-D View of a Chart That Predicts The Economic Future: The Yield Curve | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
The current flatness of the curve shows investors expect mediocre growth.

Via Suvi Salo
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World of Technology – What jobs will we have in the future?

World of Technology – What jobs will we have in the future? | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
In recent decades, mankind has achieved an unprecedented breakthrough. Today, smartphone owners have access no matter where they are to more information that was available 30 years ago. The automation

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Strauss Ngawaka's curator insight, March 26, 7:55 PM

This poses the question "which classes of people will have jobs" so will it be the labour intensive people or the working class gentleman or woman.  There may be a rise in unemployment?  However technology most probably will break the cycle of a rising trend by providing the human race with many alternatives to be more self-sufficient.  It will create sustainability with alternatives through technology to food, water and shelter, the basic necessities of life.

Jared Stewart's curator insight, March 27, 2:34 AM

A interesting article on how future technology will both positively and negatively impact the job market in the future.

Luke Hallam's curator insight, March 27, 7:05 AM

This short article works well with the other article also added with that being jobs in a increase in the next 5 years whether this takes the view on not only the increase in jobs but the change in jobs and what we will be doing in the future.

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Japanese start-up Exii unveils latest Handiii: a myoelectric 3d printed prosthetic hand

Japanese start-up Exii unveils latest Handiii: a myoelectric 3d printed prosthetic hand | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
The availability of affordable 3D printed prosthetics, that are easy to customize, repair, replace and adjust, has been surging in recent years.

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‘Heart on a chip’ reduces time and cost in drug testing for safety and efficacy | KurzweilAI

‘Heart on a chip’ reduces time and cost in drug testing for safety and efficacy | KurzweilAI | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
The “heart-on-a-chip” developed at UC Berkeley houses human heart tissue derived from adult stem cells. Drugs to be tested are inserted into the tube on

Via Paul Epping
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NASA Quietly Tests Engine That Uses No Fuel And Violates The Laws Of Physics

NASA Quietly Tests Engine That Uses No Fuel And Violates The Laws Of Physics | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
NASA has successfully tested a new space drive that doesn't use a propellant and shouldn't work, at least according to the laws of physics, according to a

Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc, Roger Smith
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Roger Smith's curator insight, March 14, 10:02 PM

sorry just had to post - "we need more power Mr Scott"

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Report: Uber hired 50 scientists from Carnegie Mellon to build self driving cars

Report: Uber hired 50 scientists from Carnegie Mellon to build self driving cars | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
We knew this day would come, but we didn’t know it would be this soon. According to TechCrunch, Uber is building a research facility in Pittsburgh to invent its own self-driving cars.

Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc, John Niles
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Drugs that dramatically increase healthy lifespan discovered by Scripps Research, Mayo Clinic | KurzweilAI

Drugs that dramatically increase healthy lifespan discovered by Scripps Research, Mayo Clinic | KurzweilAI | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
Sprycel (credit: Bristol-Myers Squibb) A research team from The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI), Mayo Clinic and other institutions has identified a new
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kokkugia

kokkugia | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
Kokkugia is an experimental architecture research practice led by Roland Snooks and Robert Stuart-Smith, with offices in Melbourne and London.
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Can We Trust Robot Cars to Make Hard Choices?

Can We Trust Robot Cars to Make Hard Choices? | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
The ethics of robot cars has been a hot topic recently. In particular, if a robot car encounters a situation where it is forced to hit one person or another—which should it... read more

Via jean-luc scherer
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Richard Westwood's curator insight, March 9, 11:41 PM

It may be a thing of the future, but skeptics are having doubts on how robot cars can make hard decisions while on the road. Will it be able to make a decision to achieve the common good? We can definitely never tell now. 

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Why 3D printing is set to revolutionise manufacturing

Why 3D printing is set to revolutionise manufacturing | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
Although currently the domain of high-value engineering, 3D printing is on course to change the way we make things - and maybe even shop

Via jean-luc scherer
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Petita 'Pickle'™'s curator insight, March 11, 4:31 AM

“There’s a perception that just because 3D printers have hit the high street for a few hundred pounds they are going to dispense with traditional factories. There’s a long journey to get to that point.”

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What will happen when the internet of things becomes artificially intelligent?

What will happen when the internet of things becomes artificially intelligent? | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
From Stephen Hawking to Spike Jonze, the existential threat posed by the onset of the ‘conscious web’ is fuelling much debate – but should we be afraid?

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Volvo Has a “Production-Viable” Autonomous Car, Will Put It on the Road by 2017

Volvo Has a “Production-Viable” Autonomous Car, Will Put It on the Road by 2017 | Chasing the Future | Scoop.it
Twenty-eight—that’s how many cameras, lasers, sensors, and radar units make up the self-driving system Volvo says it could put into a production vehicle today. Let that soak in, folks, especially the “today” part. Volvo claims its Autopilot system is “reliable enough to take over every aspect of driving in autonomous mode...” 

Via John Niles
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John Niles's curator insight, February 21, 7:25 PM
Details on the location of the sensors are provided. 100 of these cars will be put in the hands of consumers as a test in 2017.