SynBioFromLeukipp...
Follow
Find
74.3K views | +36 today
SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Cornell Chronicle: New, cheap genomics technique takes off

Cornell Chronicle: New, cheap genomics technique takes off | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

Less than a year after after publication, a technique - genotyping-by-sequencing - to analyze genetic information is taking off because the method is cheap and easy, and it generates terabytes of data.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Scientists turn living cell into laser

Scientists turn living cell into laser | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

With some jellyfish protein and a kidney cell, two researchers open the door to new possibilities in biotechnology.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Cornell Chronicle: Low-cost therapeutic proteins

Cornell Chronicle: Low-cost therapeutic proteins | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

New method of bacterial cell engineering can produce better, cheaper drug therapies

 

By Anne Ju
"Therapeutic proteins, which provide cutting-edge treatments of cancer, diabetes and countless other diseases, are among today's most widely consumed biopharmaceuticals. By introducing bottom-up carbohydrate engineering into common bacterial cells, Cornell researchers have discovered a way to make these drugs cheaper and safer.

A research team led by Matthew DeLisa, associate professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering, has invented a novel method for engineering human therapeutic glycoproteins simply and quickly using E. coli bacteria as a platform. Their work is detailed online March 25 in Nature Chemical Biology...."

 
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Church Lab Publications

Church lab publications - especially interesting the list of submitted/revision
"255. Vigneault F, Laserson U, Simen BB, Lieberman-Aiden E, Egholm M, Church GM (2012) Tracking the dynamics of a human antibody repertoire. (in revision)

254. Jewett MC, Church GM (2012) In vitro integration of ribosomal RNA synthesis, ribosome self-assembly and protein synthesis. Nature (in revision).

253. Carr PA, Wang HH, Sterling B, Isaacs FJ, Xu G, Church GM, Jacobson JM (2012) Enhanced Multiplex Genome Engineering through Oligonucleotide Co-selection (in revision)

252. Juhas M, Eberl L, Church GM (2012) Essential genes as antimicrobial targets and cornerstones of synthetic biology (submitted)

251. Boyle PM, Burrill DR, Inniss MC, Agapakis CM, Deardon A, DeWerd JG, Gedeon MA, Quinn JY, Paull ML, Raman AM, Theilmann MR, Wang L, Winn JC, Medvedik O, Schellenberg K, Haynes KA, Viel A, Brenner TJ, Mathews S, Church GM, Shah JV, Silver PA (2012) Personalized Genetic Engineering of Plants. (submitted)

250. Ball MP*, Thakuria JV*, Zaranek AW*, Clegg T, Rosenbaum AM, Wu X, Angrist M, Bhak J, Bobe J, Callow M, Cano C, Chou MF, Chung WK, Douglas SM, Estep P, Gore A, Hulick P, Labarga A, Lee J, Lunshof J, Kim BC, Kim JI, Li Z, Murray MF, Nilsen GB, Peters B, Raman AM, Reinhoff HY, Robasky K, Wheeler M, Vandewege W, Vorhaus D, Yang JL, Yang L, Aach J, Ashley EA, Drmanac R, Kim SJ, Li JB, Peshkin L, Seidman CE, Seo JS, Zhang K, Rehm HL, Church GM (2012) A Public Resource Facilitating Clinical Use of Genomes (submitted as PNAS inaugural article)

249. Peters BA, Kermani BG, Sparks AB, Alferov O, Hong P, Alexeev A, Jiang Y, Dahl F, Tang YT, Hass J, Robasky K, Zaranek AW, Lee JH, Ball MP, Peterson JE, Perazich H, Yeung G, Liu J, Chen L, Pothuraju K, Konvicka K, Tsoupko-Sitnikov M, Pant KP, Ebert J, Nilsen G, Baccash J, Halpern AL, Church GM, Drmanac R (2012) Clinically accurate genome sequencing and haplotyping from 10-20 human cells using massively parallel short reads on long DNA fragments (submitted to Nature)

248. Wang HH, Kim H, Cong L, Jeong J, Bang D, Church GM (2012) Genome-scale Promoter Engineering by Co-Selection MAGE (Nature Methods in press)

247. Wang HH, Huang PY, Xu G, Haas W, Marblestone A, Li J, Gygi S, Forster A, Jewett MC, Church GM (2012) Multiplexed in vivo His-tagging of enzyme pathways for in vitro single-pot multi-enzyme catalysis. (ACS Synthetic Biology, in press)"

http://bit.ly/nd7L2K

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

New synthetic biology technique boosts microbial production of diesel fuel

New synthetic biology technique boosts microbial production of diesel fuel | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

"Significant boosts in the microbial production of clean, green and renewable biodiesel fuel has been achieved with the development of a new technique in synthetic biology by researchers with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)'s Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI). This new technique – dubbed a dynamic sensor-regulator system (DSRS) – can detect metabolic changes in microbes during the production of fatty acid-based fuels or chemicals and control the expression of genes affecting that production. The result in one demonstration was a threefold increase in the microbial production of biodiesel from glucose."

 
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Becoming Ourselves - memetics

Becoming Ourselves - memetics | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

"Our biological limitations often make us feel uncomfortable with our own humanity but at the end of the day we are forced to admit that we are human. For some of us this may be easier than others. Despite how we may feel mentally we are biologically human and we might as well embrace it. We are seeking to transcend into something greater so we will have more potential as human beings. We are finally in a position where augmentations are becoming a reality.
With our brains being capable of so much It would be a shame to limit them to our current biology. We can start out with the basics like tattoos and piercings and remember how the first time we were modified we felt ourselves transforming. While some of us got tattoos and piercings for subcultural reasons there were those of us who got tattoos and piercings to look and feel like the people we truly were. I feel that this is what augmentations are all about and that we will continue to transform ourselves in the future to push our physical boundaries and become what we desire.
A few months ago I had an idea of opening up a biohacking salon in LA. The idea was to get a bunch of people who were pushing the thresholds the of human body together in the same room. We would become engineers of our own bodies are reinvent ourselves on our own terms. It might look like something directly out of the book Snow Crash but it would be our actual lifestyle in 2012. Biopunk might replace steampunk as the dominant subculture and instead of blending the past with the future we would be blending our human bodies with the future of humanity. We would be enhancing ourselves as self-identified cyborgs and mutants who refused to let our biology limit our imaginations....."

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Wash U's Informatics Group Releases Toolset for Genomic Analysis, Data Management | BioInform | Informatics | GenomeWeb

Wash U's Informatics Group Releases Toolset for Genomic Analysis, Data Management | BioInform | Informatics | GenomeWeb | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

"The informatics group at the Genome Institute at Washington University School of Medicine has released an integrated analysis and information-management system called the Genome Modeling System.

The system borrows concepts from traditional laboratory information-management systems — such as tracking methods and data-access interfaces, — and applies them to genomic analysis. The result is a standardized system that integrates both analysis and management capabilities, David Dooling, the assistant director of informatics at Wash U and one of the developers of GMS, explained to BioInform.

Dooling described the system during a presentation at the Genome Informatics conference hosted by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory earlier this month.

During his talk, Dooling said that his group is working on integrating GMS with the Galaxy platform so that both systems can be accessed from each other.

Currently, users can download various analysis tools that Wash U researchers developed internally. However the team is working on packaging all the GMS capabilities into a single virtual machine image for the Ubuntu platform, a version of which they plan to release by the end of the year, Dooling told BioInform in a conversation this week..."

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

PubMed Trend Analysis using Pipeline Pilot

PubMed Trend Analysis using Pipeline Pilot | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

"PubMed Trend Analysis using Pipeline Pilot
Keeping up to date with the explosion of published literature is virtually impossible these days. What are the hot topics and trends in science and industry? How are discoveries in one field of research impacting others, particularly yours? It's a catch-22 situation - you need to know what's going on in your field and related fields, but at the same time you need to be doing your own research. How can you most efficiently find the papers you need to read and keep abreast of developing fields of research? One way to help with this problem is to quickly and easily track trends and correlations in publications, for example to PubMed. These analyses can help reveal emerging topics and relationships in science, as well as those that are yesterday's news.

Trend Analysis

Trend and correlation analyses can be performed using the Text Analytics Collection (TAC) for Pipeline Pilot. TAC includes components dedicated for the search, retrieval, analysis and display of documents. To perform a trend analysis to PubMed, and show the results as a bar chart, set up a protocol similar to what is shown below..."

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Is the Human Body Redundant? « NextNature.net

Is the Human Body Redundant? « NextNature.net | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

"The increasing ‘liveliness’ of machines and accessibility to the virtual world has raised questions about whether it is possible to uncouple the mind from the body in through a host of different strategies. The basic idea is that if we are able to escape the ties of our own flesh then we can upgrade them and even replace them with immortal ones. Performance artist Stelarc has made some of the most extreme and enduring work on this subject. The artist characteristically depersonalises his anatomy and claims that it is not only an object that can be subjected to re-designing but is also ‘obsolete’. During his performances, Stelarc mentally ‘vacates’ his own body to prove its obsolescence, and claims that his body is no more than a site for redesigning and re-engineering the human form.

In my view, Stelarc’s work paradoxically highlights the profound importance that embodiment holds for being human. When Stelarc dissociates his mind from his body he demonstrates its sheer plasticity and robustness. The artist then recolonizes the body with robots, communications technologies and soft prostheses as proof of this inbuilt physical redundancy. Yet the machines he hosts are given context by the presence of a body – for in its absence, they are just a collection of machines devoid of meaning. Moreover, redundancy is a characteristic of complex systems, which are a form of organization that does not obey the Cartesian, dualistic laws that govern machines. The artist’s rejection of these qualities simply highlights that the human body is not a machine."

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

A Sensitive Switch for Visualizing Natural Gene Silencing in Single Cells - ACS Synthetic Biology (ACS Publications)

by 

Karmella A. Haynes, Francesca Ceroni, Daniel Flicker, Andrew Younger, and Pamela A. Silver

 

"RNA interference is a natural gene expression silencing system that appears throughout the tree of life. As the list of cellular processes linked to RNAi grows, so does the demand for tools to accurately measure RNAi dynamics in living cells. We engineered a synthetic RNAi sensor that converts this negative regulatory signal into a positive output in living mammalian cells, thereby allowing increased sensitivity and activation. Furthermore, the circuit’s modular design allows potentially any microRNA of interest to be detected. We demonstrated that the circuit responds to an artificial microRNA and becomes activated when the RNAi target is replaced by a natural microRNA target (miR-34) in U2OS osteosarcoma cells. Our studies extend the application of rationally designed synthetic switches to RNAi, providing a sensitive way to visualize the dynamics of RNAi activity rather than just the presence of miRNA molecules." 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

PLoS ONE: Rational Diversification of a Promoter Providing Fine-Tuned Expression and Orthogonal Regulation for Synthetic Biology

PLoS ONE: Rational Diversification of a Promoter Providing Fine-Tuned Expression and Orthogonal Regulation for Synthetic Biology | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

Rational Diversification of a Promoter Providing Fine-Tuned Expression and Orthogonal Regulation for Synthetic Biology
by
Benjamin A. Blount, Tim Weenink, Serge Vasylechko, Tom Ellis

"Yeast is an ideal organism for the development and application of synthetic biology, yet there remain relatively few well-characterised biological parts suitable for precise engineering of this chassis. In order to address this current need, we present here a strategy that takes a single biological part, a promoter, and re-engineers it to produce a fine-graded output range promoter library and new regulated promoters desirable for orthogonal synthetic biology applications. A highly constitutive Saccharomyces cerevisiae promoter, PFY1p, was identified by bioinformatic approaches, characterised in vivo and diversified at its core sequence to create a 36-member promoter library. TetR regulation was introduced into PFY1p to create a synthetic inducible promoter (iPFY1p) that functions in an inverter device. Orthogonal and scalable regulation of synthetic promoters was then demonstrated for the first time using customisable Transcription Activator-Like Effectors (TALEs) modified and designed to act as orthogonal repressors for specific PFY1-based promoters. The ability to diversify a promoter at its core sequences and then independently target Transcription Activator-Like Orthogonal Repressors (TALORs) to virtually any of these sequences shows great promise toward the design and construction of future synthetic gene networks that encode complex “multi-wire” logic functions."

http://bit.ly/GC5tk8

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

E. coli neighborhood watch | Nature Biotechnology

E. coli neighborhood watch | Nature Biotechnology | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

E. coli neighborhood watch
Nature Biotechnology
"The bacterial signaling molecule indole is the direct cause of antibiotic resistance by some bacterial cells, reports a paper published online this week in Nature Chemical Biology. These findings improve our understanding of bacterial populations and point toward a potential new direction in the development of more effective antibacterial agents. Bacterial ‘persisters’ are cells that cannot be eradicated by existing antibiotic treatments even though the cells are genetically identical to cells that are killed by the treatment. Indole has been linked to cellular processes that are important in persisters, but its role was not clear. James Collins and colleagues show that indole serves as a signal for bacterial cells to enter a protected state. In particular, it decreases the impact of several antibiotics on E. coli, with cells that respond best to the molecule also demonstrating the highest level of protection. The authors also showed that indole activates two cellular pathways - oxidative stress and phage-shock responses - that are involved in persister formation. Importantly, another molecule that could also trigger these pathways causes the same formation of protected cells."http://bit.ly/GPyKJb

#synbio #syntheticbiology #syntheticbio

 
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

CGS : Writing Your Baby’s Synthetic Genome: Genetic Engineering for the Facebook Generation

CGS : Writing Your Baby’s Synthetic Genome: Genetic Engineering for the Facebook Generation | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

Designing a better human?

 
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Human cell becomes living laser : Nature News

Human cell becomes living laser : Nature News | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

"Scientists have for the first time created laser light using living biological material: a single human cell and some jellyfish protein.

"Lasers started from physics and are viewed as engineering devices," says Seok-Hyun Yun, an optical physicist at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, who created the 'living laser' with his colleague Malte Gather. "This is the first time that we have used biological materials to build a laser and generate light from something that is living." The finding is reported today in Nature Photonics 1."

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Faster way to probe proteins - MIT News Office

Faster way to probe proteins - MIT News Office | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

Infrared spectroscopy allows scientists to analyze protein structure on an ultrafast timescale.

"Proteins can take many different shapes, and those shapes help determine each protein’s function. Analyzing those structures can tell scientists a great deal about how a protein behaves, but many of the methods now used to study structure require proteins to be crystallized or otherwise altered from their natural state...."

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Managing for the unknown - CBS News

Managing for the unknown - CBS News | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

"It's not what you know but rather what you don't know that will keep you awake at nights.

That is a good saying that received some validity with a citation in Bloomberg Businessweek of findings by Professor Nick Bostrom, director of the Future of Humanity Institute at Oxford University. Among the dangers - in order of severity - threatening mankind with eminent danger are machine super-intelligence, nanotechnology weaponry, nuclear war, synthetic biology and climate change*. Second on that list is "unknown risks."

In other words, the unknown force over the horizon is what may bring catastrophe. For example, a century ago would scientists have conceived of nuclear war, nanotechnology or even malevolent artificial intelligence?..."

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Design of a dynamic sensor-regulator system for production of chemicals and fuels derived from fatty acids

by 

Fuzhong Zhang, James M Carothers & Jay D Keasling

"Microbial production of chemicals is now an attractive alternative to chemical synthesis. Current efforts focus mainly on constructing pathways to produce different types of molecules1, 2, 3. However, there are few strategies for engineering regulatory components to improve product titers and conversion yields of heterologous pathways4. Here we developed a dynamic sensor-regulator system (DSRS) to produce fatty acid–based products in Escherichia coli, and demonstrated its use for biodiesel production. The DSRS uses a transcription factor that senses a key intermediate and dynamically regulates the expression of genes involved in biodiesel production. This DSRS substantially improved the stability of biodiesel-producing strains and increased the titer to 1.5 g/l and the yield threefold to 28% of the theoretical maximum. Given the large number of natural sensors available, this DSRS strategy can be extended to many other biosynthetic pathways to balance metabolism, thereby increasing product titers and conversion yields and stabilizing production hosts...."http://bit.ly/GUDy2L

 
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Recent Fear and Loathing in Synthetic Biology Reminiscent of Other Biotechnologies

"As novel scientific achievements such as recombinant DNA technology, stem cells, and most recently, synthetic biology, exit the lab and merge with the outside world, fear has followed them. This fear factor has influenced public perception of most novel scientific endeavors.

Biotechnophobia seems to stem from the fact that the risk is human-made. People are less worried about natural risks, David Ropeik, founder and principal of Ropeik and Associates, a risk management consultancy, wrote in The Guardian.

“Nature can indeed be red in tooth and claw, but new versions of plants, animals, and microorganisms that evolve via Darwinian evolution don’t upset us half as much as hybridization by genetic engineering.” We will need to understand and come to terms with factors that bias our risk perceptions, Ropeik warned, or we may fail to exploit breakthroughs like synthetic life.

There are indeed organizations to assess risk and monitor potential hazards associated with biotechnologies. In October 1974, NIH established the Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee (RAC) to respond to public anxiety about the safety of manipulating genetic material through the use of recombinant DNA techniques.

NIH has assessed its “Guidelines for Research Involving Recombinant DNA” with regard to synthetic biology and found that the distinction between recombinant and synthetic techniques is immaterial in discerning the need for biosafety oversight. Rather it is the biological attributes of the final product that should be taken into account. As part of the assessment it amended the guidelines document to include nucleic acids that are synthesized chemically without the use of recombinant technology.

Yet, as recently as March 13, a group of 111 watchdog organizations including ETC Group and Friends of the Earth issued a report saying that current practices for regulating and assessing biotechnology were inadequate. They called synthetic biology “an extreme form of genetic engineering” and asked for a moratorium on the release and commercial use of synthetic organisms and their products...."

 
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

BGI's GPU Server Farm Accelerates Genome Analysis Apps | Informatics Iron | GenomeWeb

BGI's GPU Server Farm Accelerates Genome Analysis Apps | Informatics Iron | GenomeWeb | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

"Yesterday, the Beijing Genomics Institute announced that they have used GPUs to speed up three genome data analysis tools: SOAP3 aligner, GSNP, and GAMA.

"We are drowning in the genome data that our high-throughput sequencing machines create every day," says Bingqiang Wang, head of high performance computing from BGI. "GPU acceleration of our genome analysis applications enables our scientists to crunch through data and gain insights into bacteria, plants and humans faster than was ever possible. It offers the potential for researchers and healthcare professionals to identify highly effective and affordable individualized medicines and treatments."..."

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

The Stanford Education Experiment Could Change Higher Learning Forever

The Stanford Education Experiment Could Change Higher Learning Forever | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

"Stanford doesn’t want me. I can say that because it’s a documented fact: I was once denied admission in writing. I took my last math class back in high school. Which probably explains why this quiz on how to get a computer to calculate an ideal itinerary is making my brain hurt. I’m staring at a crude map of Romania on my MacBook. Twenty cities are connected in a network of straight black lines. My goal is to determine the best route from Arad to Bucharest. A handful of search algorithms with names like breadth-first, depth-first, uniform-cost, and A* can be used. Each employs a different strategy for scanning the map and considering various paths. I’ve never heard of these algorithms or considered how a computer determines a route. But I’ll learn, because despite the utter lack of qualifications I just mentioned, I’m enrolled in CS221: Introduction to Artificial Intelligence, a graduate- level course taught by Stanford professors Sebastian Thrun and Peter Norvig...."

more...
Socrates Logos's comment, March 27, 2012 2:10 PM
An interesting blog post. Thanks a lot for sharing. Something like this is on the horizon and the change might be quicker as we expect. I am still struggling with the question of the business model behind this all. In order to make people adapt to all these changes one need to tell them how to make a living. I disused this a lot the last days, but have no good answer. Ant further tips, advices, persons to contact... are very much appreciated.
C.DLT christopherdelatorre.com's comment, March 29, 2012 6:29 PM
definitely will. and yes, a conundrum indeed.. I'm setting up an FB page for C.DLT over the weekend. I'll introduce my revised survey there, building on the preliminary survey u participated in last yr, with the aim of taking the pilot study a step further. the 'viable business model' is one of many engaging topics for the space! I'll tap u on the shoulder when the page is live.
Socrates Logos's comment, March 30, 2012 4:16 AM
Looking forward to your fb page. Let me know the link.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Building novel applications with pipeline pilot to drive next generation sequencing

Building novel applications with pipeline pilot to drive next generation sequencing

"Since the completion of the Human Genome Project nearly ten years ago,
the science of genomics has undergone a transformation. Enabled by new
DNA sequencing technologies, many more scientists and informaticians are interrogating larger and more complex data sets and are expanding the range of problems that can be addressed through sequencing. With the release of the Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) Collection for Pipeline Pilot , Accelrys is enabling scientists and informaticians to build and perform complex analyses of DNA sequence information in dramatically streamlined fashion.
While the NGS Collection supports native data formats from all major sequencing platforms (including those from Illumina, Life Technologies, Roche/454), the system can adapt readily to new sequencing formats and analysis methods
as they become available. Accelrys and Oxford Nanopore Technologies have
been collaborating both on the development of pipelines that address general computational problems in NGS analysis, regardless of platform, as well as pipelines that support real-time nanopore based experimental analysis for use with the Oxford Nanopore product when it is commercially available. In this case study, collaborators from Oxford Nanopore describe features of the NGS Collection and how it will benefit genome researchers."
“In no time at all and without requiring scientists to learn sophisticated analysis software, Pipeline Pilot helps scientists ask relevant, scientific questions about next generation sequencing data.”
http://bit.ly/GOmDNP

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

TEDxWarwick - Kevin Warwick - Implants & Technology -- The Future of Healthcare?

"Kevin Warwick is Professor of Cybernetics at the University of Reading, where he carries out research in artificial intelligence, control, robotics and cyborgs. He is a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of the IET.

Kevin was born in Coventry, UK and left school to join British Telecom, at the age of 16. He took his first degree at Aston University, followed by a PhD and research post at Imperial College, London. He subsequently held positions at Oxford, Newcastle and Warwick Universities before being offered the Chair at Reading.

As well as publishing over 500 research papers, Kevin's experiments into implant technology led to him being featured as the cover story on the US magazine, Wired.
Kevin has been awarded higher doctorates (DSc) both by Imperial College and the Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague, and has received Honorary Doctorates from Aston University, Coventry University, Bradford University and Robert Gordon University. He was presented with The Future of Health Technology Award in MIT, was made an Honorary Member of the Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg, and has received The IEE Senior Achievement Medal, the Mountbatten Medal and the Ellison-Cliffe Medal. In 2000 Kevin presented the Royal Institution Christmas Lectures, entitled "The Rise of the Robots".

Kevin's research involves the invention of an intelligent deep brain stimulator to counteract the effects of Parkinson Disease tremors. The tremors are predicted and a current signal is applied to stop the tremors before they start -- this is to be trialled in human subjects. Another project involves the use of cultured/biological neural networks to drive robots around -- the brain of each robot is made of neural tissue.

Kevin is perhaps best known for his pioneering experiments involving a neuro-surgical implantation into the median nerves of his left arm to link his nervous system directly to a computer to assess the latest technology for use with the disabled. He was successful with the first extra-sensory (ultrasonic) input for a human and with the first purely electronic telegraphic communication experiment between the nervous systems of two humans."

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Click Nucleic Acid Ligation: Applications in Bi... [Acc Chem Res. 2012] - PubMed - NCBI

"Biochemical strategies that use a combination of synthetic oligonucleotides, thermostable DNA polymerases, and DNA ligases can produce large DNA constructs up to 1 megabase in length. Although these ambitious targets are feasible biochemically, comparable technologies for the chemical synthesis of long DNA strands lag far behind. The best available chemical approach is the solid-phase phosphoramidite method, which can be used to assemble DNA strands up to 150 bases in length. Beyond this point, deficiencies in the chemistry make it impossible to produce pure DNA. A possible alternative approach to the chemical synthesis of large DNA strands is to join together carefully purified synthetic oligonucleotides by chemical methods. Click ligation by the copper-catalyzed azide-alkyne (CuAAC) reaction could facilitate this process. In this Account, we describe the synthesis, characterization, and applications of oligonucleotides prepared by click ligation. The alkyne and azide oligonucleotide strands can be prepared by standard protocols, and the ligation reaction is compatible with a wide range of chemical modifications to DNA and RNA. We have employed click ligation to synthesize DNA constructs up to 300 bases in length and much longer sequences are feasible. When the resulting triazole linkage is placed in a PCR template, various DNA polymerases correctly copy the entire base sequence. We have also successfully demonstrated both in vitro transcription and rolling circle amplification through the modified linkage. This linkage has shown in vivo biocompatibility: an antibiotic resistance gene containing triazole linkages functions in E. coli . Using click ligation, we have synthesized hairpin ribozymes up to 100 nucleotides in length and a hammerhead ribozyme with the triazole linkage located at the substrate cleavage site. At the opposite end of the length scale, click-ligated, cyclic mini-DNA duplexes have been used as models to study base pairing. Cyclic duplexes have potential therapeutic applications. They have extremely high thermodynamic stability, have increased resistance to enzymatic degradation, and have been investigated as decoys for regulatory proteins. For potential nanotechnology applications, we have synthesized double stranded DNA catenanes by click ligation. Other researchers have studied covalently fixed multistranded DNA constructs including triplexes and quadruplexes."

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Q & A: Demystifying Synthetic Biology

Q & A: Demystifying Synthetic Biology | SynBioFromLeukipposInstitute | Scoop.it

Researcher who designs and creates homemade yeast discusses the growing field of synthetic biology.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Socrates Logos
Scoop.it!

Signaling-mediated bacterial persister formation. [Nat Chem Biol. 2012] - PubMed - NCBI

Bacteria signal to survive

"Bacterial cells that are genetically identical to members of their population that succumb to antibiotics can survive in a dormant state, thanks to chemical communication between bacteria.Surviving ‘persister’ cells have been implicated in chronic infections such as tuberculosis. James Collins and his team at Boston
University in Massachusetts gave Escherichia coli the chemical indole, which
the bacteria produce as a signalling molecule. Indole- treated E. coli were able
to withstand higher levelsof several antibiotics than untreated bacteria. Moreover, the individual bacterial cells in a culture that were most responsive to indole were also those most resistant to antibiotics. Indole activates genes involved in responding to stress, and E. coli strains lacking stress-response genes produce fewer persisters. ....."Nature Research Highlights http://bit.ly/GJ7BqS

Original paper: Signaling-mediated bacterial persister formation
by
Nicole M Vega, Kyle R Allison, Ahmad S Khalil & James J Collins
"Here we show that bacterial communication through indole signaling induces persistence, a phenomenon in which a subset of an isogenic bacterial population tolerates antibiotic treatment. We monitor indole-induced persister formation using microfluidics and identify the role of oxidative-stress and phage-shock pathways in this phenomenon. We propose a model in which indole signaling 'inoculates' a bacterial subpopulation against antibiotics by activating stress responses, leading to persister formation...."
http://bit.ly/GVgfow
#synbio #syntheticbiology

 
more...
No comment yet.