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Posts tagged with "Biological News"

  • Biological News

    The Chemistry Nobels, 2018

    The 2018 Nobel Prize in Chemistry has gone to Frances Arnold (for directed evolution of enzymes) and to George Smith and Gregory Winter for phage display. These are worthy discoveries, techniques that have gone on to be used for a huge variety of work ranging from blue-sky research to marketed drugs, and the Nobel committee… Read More
  • Analytical Chemistry

    Sitting There For Five Hundred Million Years

    This paper is really a tour de force of analytical chemistry, because it does something that I didn’t think was possible. The team is looking at a rather ancient creature, Dickinsonia. In fact, you could argue that it’s the ancient creature, since it’s one of the Ediacaran organisms that are part of the first explosion… Read More
  • Biological News

    Switching On Innate Immunity

    Cells couldn’t have a hope of working if they weren’t tightly spatially organized. The nucleus vs. the cytosol (and the cell membrane itself) are the two most obvious partitions, and then you have specialized organelles like the mitochondria, et very much cetera, dividing things further. Life itself is organized around things being diff… Read More
  • Biological News

    Cancer Cells Are Even Worse Than We Thought

    There are a lot of cancer cell lines out there, and many of them get used a lot, too. It’s not surprising, in a way, because these are cells that have already (and unfortunately) proven themselves to be robust and fast-growing, so many of these lines tend to take to cell culture conditions pretty well. Read More
  • Biological News

    GPCRs: Peeling The Onion Some More

    I like to say that when I was first working on G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) as drug targets, that after I while I thought I really understood a lot of what was going on. But that was the peak. Further experience eroded that confidence, and even though I’ve learned a lot more about them over… Read More
  • Biological News

    Cells Like Turbulence. Well, Some Cells.

    Let’s talk cell culture – specifically, how weird it is. There are an awful lot of ways to grow cells, naturally – different media of course, different scales, differences in how crowded you let them get, how often you split them, add nutrients, wash them, all those things. All of those make sense to me… Read More
  • Biological News

    You Don’t Understand Long Noncoding RNAs

    Let’s confuse ourselves thoroughly and talk about long noncoding RNA. It’s just part of the menagerie of RNA species that have come to light over the last twenty years, of course, and honestly you can confuse yourself with any of them. But just asking “what are lncRNAs doing?” is enough right there. They’re lengthy str… Read More
  • Biological News

    A Close Look at a Cancer Genome

    Ever since gene sequencing became feasible (for several values of “feasible”!) it’s been of great interest to look at the genetic material of cancerous cells. It’s been clear from very early on that there are many changes, mutations, rearrangements, shifts, etc. in a cancer cell’s DNA, and it’s been equally clear… Read More
  • Analytical Chemistry

    Clicked DNA: From Lab Curiosity to Analytical Technique

    I’ve written a few times about an odd sort of unnatural DNA sequence, where some of the nucleotides are connected via “click” triazole units rather than the traditional polyphosphate backbone. I remember wondering what the chemical biology community would make out of these things, and I wanted to report on at least one ingenious a… Read More
  • Biological News

    The Fuzzy Free-For-All

    I wrote here about the way that disordered proteins seem to be able to bind together tightly in the apparent absence of a defined structure, and along the way I expressed a desire not to lead any drug discovery efforts against such systems. Now here’s another example of protein fuzziness, and I can’t say that… Read More
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