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Size-Selection Is Essential for Cell-Free DNA Studies

Advances in using cell-free DNA (cfDNA) to glean clinically meaningful information for a patient have been stunning. For the most part, these research studies (or downstream diagnostic tests) isolate fetal DNA...
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Basic Bacterial Culturing Practices

Mastering basic bacterial culturing practices is a must if you are planning a career in microbiology! Growing bacteria might be one of the easiest things to do as a scientist. Also, as you’ve probably...
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Water your choices? Understanding Types of Water in the Lab

If you are working in a scientific laboratory, it is very important to be aware of the various types of water available, because the purity may not be acceptable for your specific experimental...
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Investigating an Expression Quantitative Trait Locus (eQTL)

Thousands upon thousands of genetic variants are now associated with every disease and trait you can possibly think of. Such traits range from cancers to blood pressure, intelligence, height, weight… and many...
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Prioritize Your Way to Success: a 4-Step Guide

So you just got out of your adviser’s office, feeling inspired, you get to your desk and look at the 27 new things added to your never-ending to-do list. You may feel overwhelmed, like you will never get all...
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Running your Lab on a Shoestring Budget

We live in challenging times for academic biomedical research. The success rates for research grants have declined precipitously over the years. Under these circumstances, it is never too soon to take proactive...
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Tips for Peering into the Interior of Mice Using Intravital Microscopy

Intravital microscopy (IVM) is a newer approach for the imaging of living tissues and organs in live animals. A wide variety of organs can be imaged in rodents–eyes, kidneys, brain, lymph nodes, and gut, to...
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Variations on the ChIP-seq Theme and Challenges of Befriending Large Datasets

ChIP-seq has proved amazing. Through these new techniques, we can obtain big datasets in a matter of days, making our lives in the lab easier and more efficient. ChiP-seq combines chromatin...
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How to Pour Agar Plates in a Pinch

Every lab has a culture, a vibe of its own. Nowhere does the distinct character of the lab become most apparent than the way in which the lab chooses to pour agar plates. You may have heard or been told to pour...
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How Fluorescent Molecules Work: Shine Bright like a Diamond

Fluorescence is one of the most important and useful tools in a biologist’s toolbox. In biology, nearly every field, from physiology to immunology, uses fluorescent molecules (aka fluorophores) to detect...
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