J. K. Wickiser Lab

Archive for October, 2011

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Identifying the Microbial Culprit of The Black Plague

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A microbial treasure box was just dug up and some insight was provided (via sequencing technologies) into The Black Plague

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Enzymatic networks

Monday, October 17, 2011

This group analyzes enzyme networks for robustness and dynamics.

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A network analysis approach to prediabetes

Friday, October 14, 2011

The molecular, cellular, and evironemental factors of diabetes makes for a complex problem that this group attacks using a network analysis approach.

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lincRNAs impact pluipotency and cell differentiation

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Mouse cells have been used to demonstrate that long intergenic non-coding RNAs (lincRNAs) have key roles in the circuitry controlling ES cell state.

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An RNA language hypothesis

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Here’s an interesting paper that tries to tie together miRNA function and a network between mRNAs and intergenic regions.

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The essential genome of a bacterium: wants versus needs.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Lucy Shaprio and colleagues have identifed the minimal set of genes required for caulobacter to thrive on rich media. This work will help others bioengineer the organism to function in a variety of roles involving the production of small molecule metabolites and the generation of biosensor systems.

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Microbial Bioinfomatics tools

Friday, October 7, 2011

Cool tools for microbial bioinformatics from Berkeley Lab.

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Network Science – making even Slime Molds sexy

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Slime molds don’t sound very exciting but researchers are using them to optimize networks ranging from highway systems to disasters emergency response procedures. In this recent NYT Science Times piece, the research of several prominent labs is showcased.

In short, these organisms live as individual soil-dwelling cells and are content to survive on their basic food source: bacteria. But when food becomes scarce, these individuals send a chemical signal out to each other and a major change in physiology and strategy takes place. Some cells will sacrifice themselves for the great good of the group by filling themselves up with a carbohydrate that stiffens them (causing death). These cells serve as a scaffold support so that other cells can use this stalk as a structure to form spores, or cellular life rafts, that are capable of weathering the starvation conditions. Only when food becomes plentiful do the spores change back into individual cells to form a new colony.

The Bionetworks group in the Network Science Center is currently studying the modes of communication between cells as they respond not only to starvation conditions, but chemical contaminants of military interest as well.

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Nobel in Medicine

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Scientists pioneering the study of Immunity and Dendritic Cells were awarded the Nobel on Monday. One of the three awardees, Ralph Steinman, happened to pass away the Friday before the announcement, which caused a stir among the lay press because it’s usually not awarded posthumously.

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Great book to add to the “to read” pile

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

RNA Worlds

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