Tribolium castaneum87-300

CRISPR Gene Drive Resistance Due To Inbreeding And Mutations

In a previous article, we discussed how CRISPR is not almighty and that organisms can evolve resistance to the changes made to their genome. The simplest method for them to accomplish this is just to mutate the changed gene back to what it was before or just stop its function altogether. If the change made […]

Utricularia gibba3

Carnivorous, Flowering Bladderwort Reveals Depths of Gene Duplication

Genetics can get weird. Especially so in plants, which are more conducive to hybridization and duplications of their entire genome. Polyploidy, as such a duplication is called, is often rampant across ancestral lineages of plants and makes species classification taxing, to say the least. The Flowers and the Carnivores The flowering plants, also known as […]

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Why Don’t Damaging Mutations Kill Off Humanity And Complex Life?

How is humanity still alive? How is most complex life still going in the first place? Biologically speaking, the number of genetic mutations we have with every generation that results in a negative effect should have wiped us all out. Simple Processes Natural selection as a random process and the error rate in our own […]

Cellular-virus-wallpaper

Resurrecting Ancient Proteins To Fight Back Against Modern Viruses

Viruses have a variety of tactics they employ in their attacks on bacteria, plants, and animals like us. Their ultimate goal is to hijack the systems of the cell and convert them into producing more of themselves. Some viruses simply reconfigure construction molecules to directly make viral parts, others insert their own viral genes into […]

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Investigating The Tea Genome And How To Make More Flavorful Tea

Even more so than coffee, tea is the most popular drink in the world, barring alcohol itself. Its history stretches back thousands of years and across dozens of cultures. The caffeine within and the multiple health benefits from regular consumption have helped continue its popularity to this day. But that popularity includes an ever increasing […]

Staphylococcus aureus VISA 2

New Modified Antibodies Enable Fight Against MRSA And Other Bacteria

The human immune system is usually a tireless worker that does its best to keep us protected from pathogen invasion. But even for all of its complexity, there are certain parts of it that fail hard when confronted. Enemy Identification When it comes to combating bacteria wishing to harm us, one of the first actions […]

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Plants Use Root Structures To ‘Listen’ And Search For Water

Water is important for life. It is a primary source of structure and function in all life forms, even including viruses that use it as interstitial fluid for containing their viral genome. For organisms that produce their own complex compounds, commonly known as autotrophs, water remains the main source of outside material they need to […]

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New Stem Cell Method Allows Development Of Extra-Embryonic Tissues

Stem cells were often thought of as the holy grail of biological discovery after they were uncovered by Ernest McCulloch and James Till in 1963. A method to produce cells that can form into any part of the body, potentially providing new organs and prevent horrible disorders like leukemia. Of course, things didn’t really turn […]

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RNA Editing Allows Cephalopods To Alter Genetic Instructions

The central dogma of molecular biology and genetics is pretty straightforward. You take DNA, then you transcribe the desired gene into RNA (usually mRNA) and, once outside of the nucleus, you translate that RNA using ribosomes into amino acids that then form proteins. Those proteins then do the actual function that their original genetic encoding […]

Diverse e Coli

Genetically Engineered Inflammation-Sensing Bacteria Made With Synthetic Biology

Synthetic biology is complicated. When you’re building biological systems from the ground up, how could it not be? But the results are almost always something amazing, a real revolutionary accomplishment that wouldn’t be possible with any other field of science. The only other field that comes close is nanotechnology and mechanical systems are still somewhat […]