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Do-It-Yourself Biology? Messing Around with DNA Increasingly a Garage-Band Venture

Do-It-Yourself Biology? Messing Around with DNA Increasingly a Garage-Band Venture | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
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by

Glen Martin
"Silicon is so passé. Those who are truly au courant in the coding world are working with carbon—specifically DNA, that most ancient and elegant of codes. Such biohacking is central to the rapidly expanding field of synthetic biology, a term that somehow seems a little threatening to many of us who are the products of the old fashioned kind of biology that’s been around since the planet first managed to gin up a few primitive prokaryotes 3.5 billion years ago.
That’s especially because messing around with DNA is increasingly a garage band kind of venture. The basic techniques and technology are now sufficiently disseminated so that any reasonably bright and inquisitive person can do all kinds of interesting things in a home or community lab. And—gulp—might that not include weaponizing Ebola or involve some other highly anti-social endeavor?
Relax (really). Those fears are overblown, opines Nina DiPrimio, the editor of BioCoder, a quarterly published by and for the DIYbio (as in, Do It Yourself biology) community.
 In the first place, says DiPrimio, endowing viruses with new and ever-more-lethal characteristics requires the kind of equipment and skill sets usually found only in large government or corporate labs. Second, if anyone wants to attempt it, the mischief-maker wouldn’t need to figure out how to manipulate Ebola or HIV. Relatively simple procedures already are known for weaponizing basic old anthrax, or manufacturing and distributing astoundingly powerful poisons such as ricin, or—well, you get the idea.
“It takes a lot of skill and equipment to do bad things” with gene-spliced microbes says DiPrimio, until recently a postdoctoral researcher at UC Berkeley and the co-organizer of the university’s Synthetic Biology Super Group. “A DNA cloning class won’t teach you how to create something pathogenic. That isn’t to say potential dangers should be ignored. At a certain point, regulation (of homegrown biohacking) is likely. We don’t know what that will look like, but the community is aware of it and discussing it.”
DiPrimio is also deeply concerned about safety within these do-it-yourself operations. BioCoder’s articles include pointers to ensure one’s lab is legal, and emphasize basic protocols so tyro researchers don’t burn, blow up or electrocute themselves. But first and foremost, the publication serves as an agora for the biohacking community...."
http://bit.ly/1ywJmX7

BTW have a look to the paper about the Leukippos  - a SynBio Lab in the cloud  in BioCoder:
http://bit.ly/1skwvZu
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Makers Beyond Earth: Synthetic Biology and Space Exploration - YouTube

Space exploration is limited by the cost of launching materials off earth. Biology could solve this problem making possible the dream of producing bespoke to...
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Synthetic ribosome can keep bacteria alive « AlwaysResearching.com

Synthetic ribosome can keep bacteria alive « AlwaysResearching.com | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
View the article's original source Author: Megan Fellman-Northwestern Scientists have engineered a tethered ribosome that works nearly as well as the real thing—an organelle that produces all the proteins and enzymes within the cell.
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€41M for a Rising Star of Synthetic Biology: Ginkgo Bioworks - Labiotech.eu

€41M for a Rising Star of Synthetic Biology: Ginkgo Bioworks - Labiotech.eu | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
Once will not hurt, we’ll speak a bit about an inspiring US-based company. A synthetic biology start-up from the worlds biggest biocluster is on its road to success.
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The Genesis Engine

Editing DNA is now cut-and-paste. We could eliminate disease, cure hunger—or break the world.
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The exciting future of synthetic biology, Ryan Bethencourt Indie Bio innovator

The exciting future of synthetic biology, Ryan Bethencourt Indie Bio innovator | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
By @SimonCockingReally interesting interview with Indie Bio innovator Ryan Bethencourt @RyanBethencourt  Program Director & VC Partner at IndieBio San Francisco @indbio. Also former Head o
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Synthetic biology: Ribosomal ties that bind - Nature.com

Nature.com
Synthetic biology: Ribosomal ties that bind
Nature.com
Biochemists have been engineering biomolecules for decades — proteins with new folds and functions, and nucleic acids that control gene expression or form complex architectures.
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Bacteria Programmed to Develop Basic Computing Elements Like Sensors, Memory and Circuits

Bacteria Programmed to Develop Basic Computing Elements Like Sensors, Memory and Circuits | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
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"The researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have successfully programmed the friendly bacteria inside our body to detect diseases like colon cancer and immune disorder- and treat them. They have unveiled sensors, circuits, and memory switches to be encoded in bacterium Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron, found in human gut system."

http://bit.ly/1LLTpl4

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Modulating protein activity using tethered ligands with mutually exclusive binding sites

Modulating protein activity using tethered ligands with mutually exclusive binding sites | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
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Alberto Schena, Rudolf Griss & Kai Johnsson

"The possibility to design proteins whose activities can be switched on and off by unrelated effector molecules would enable applications in various research areas, ranging from biosensing to synthetic biology. We describe here a general method to modulate the activity of a protein in response to the concentration of a specific effector. The approach is based on synthetic ligands that possess two mutually exclusive binding sites, one for the protein of interest and one for the effector. Tethering such a ligand to the protein of interest results in an intramolecular ligand–protein interaction that can be disrupted through the presence of the effector. Specifically, we introduce a luciferase controlled by another protein, a human carbonic anhydrase whose activity can be controlled by proteins or small molecules in vitro and on living cells, and novel fluorescent and bioluminescent biosensors."

 http://bit.ly/1RU8shG

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Jim Collins '87 gives lecture on synthetic biology

Holy Cross alumnus James J. Collins '87 is a pioneer in the emerging field of synthetic biology, which combines biology and engineering to create circuits that ...
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A Guide for Communicating Synthetic Biology - Synthetic Biology Project

A Guide for Communicating Synthetic Biology - Synthetic Biology Project | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
Ensuring benefits of synthetic biology are realized through responsible development. Synthetic biology specific news, events, publications and more.
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CytoComp - YouTube

CytoComp - YouTube | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
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I made 16 brief videos explaining a biological microprocessor 

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James P. Collins - One Biology, One Science: A Vision for the 21st Century - YouTube

Space exploration is limited by the cost of launching materials off earth. Biology could solve this problem making possible the dream of producing bespoke to...
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Abeona Therapeutics using CRISPR to treat Fanconi anemia, raises $8.5M

Abeona Therapeutics using CRISPR to treat Fanconi anemia, raises $8.5M | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
Abeona Therapeutics using CRISPR to treat Fanconi anemia, raises $8.5M
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New Chlamydia Vaccine Uses Synthetic Biology

New Chlamydia Vaccine Uses Synthetic Biology | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
Chlamydia is one of the most common sexually transmitted infections in the world.
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Synthetic Biology for Space Program - Christopher Carr - YouTube

Source - http://serious-science.org/videos/1080 MIT Research Scientist Christopher Carr on challenges of distant journeys, components of cosmic radiation, an...
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Synthetic biology: Ribosomal ties that bind

The ribosome is the cellular complex of proteins and RNA molecules that synthesizes proteins. An artificial ribosome in which the two main subunits are tethered together creates opportunities for engineering this process.
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UC Irvine to exhibit artworks created via biological engineering

UC Irvine to exhibit artworks created via biological engineering | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
UC Irvine has put out a call for artists who want to manipulate the building blocks of life as we know it to create art as we’ve never known it – works made of living organisms that owe their existence to biological engineering rather...
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Continuous microfluidic fabrication of synthetic asymmetric vesicles.

Continuous microfluidic fabrication of synthetic asymmetric vesicles. | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
Lab Chip. 2015 Jul 29. [Epub ahead of print]
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"We report on a novel microfluidic strategy for the continuous fabrication of monodisperse asymmetric vesicles with customized membrane composition, size, and luminal content. The microfluidic device encompasses a triangular post region and two flow-focusing regions. The major steps involved in the vesicle fabrication process include: (1) forming highly uniform water emulsions in an oil/inner-leaflet-lipid solution, (2) replacing the inner-leaflet-lipid solution with an outer-leaflet-lipid solution inside the microchannel network, (3) forming water-in-oil-in-water double emulsions, and (4) extracting excess oil/outer-leaflet-lipid solution from the double emulsions. Bilayer membrane asymmetry and unilamellarity are evaluated using a fluorescence quenching assay and a transmembrane protein insertion assay, respectively. Our approach addresses many of the deficiencies found in existing technologies for building vesicles, and yields strong membrane asymmetry. The ability to create and sustain membrane asymmetry is an important feature, as it is a characteristic of nearly all natural membranes. Over 80% of the vesicles remain stable for at least 6 weeks and the membrane asymmetry is maintained for over 30 hours. The asymmetric vesicles built using this strategy are collected off-chip and hold the potential to be used as model systems in membrane biology or as vehicles for drug delivery.'

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Is synthetic biology mechanical biology? - PubMed - NCBI

Is synthetic biology mechanical biology? - PubMed - NCBI | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
Hist Philos Life Sci. 2015 Jul 24. [Epub ahead of print]
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Synthetic biology, future trends to look out for. Cathal Garvey, Indie Bio Sci-director

Synthetic biology, future trends to look out for. Cathal Garvey, Indie Bio Sci-director | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
By @SimonCockingReally pleased to bring you the words and insights of Cathal Garvey @onetruecathal, Sci-Director of Indie Bio in Cork, EU Synbio accelerator. As well as DIYbio enabler, Pythonista
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Optical Control of CRISPR/Cas9 Gene Editing

Optical Control of CRISPR/Cas9 Gene Editing | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
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James Hemphill, Erin K. Borchardt, Kalyn Brown, Aravind Asokan, and Alexander Deiters 

"The CRISPR/Cas9 system has emerged as an important tool in biomedical research for a wide range of applications, with significant potential for genome engineering and gene therapy. In order to achieve conditional control of the CRISPR/Cas9 system, a genetically encoded light-activated Cas9 was engineered through the site-specific installation of a caged lysine amino acid. Several potential lysine residues were identified as viable caging sites that can be modified to optically control Cas9 function, as demonstrated through optical activation and deactivation of both exogenous and endogenous gene function."
 http://bit.ly/1Mn2lOh

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Towards synthetic biological approaches to resource utilization on space missions

Towards synthetic biological approaches to resource utilization on space missions | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it
RT @RSocPublishing: Can synthetic biology help future space exploration? http://t.co/eGJDgMhCU3 #ukspace2015 http://t.co/amw2DO8slU
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