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Of Interest

The Best of Bitesize Bio 2009

Before we get our brains fully back into gear after the festive season and embark on what we hope will be a momentous year for Bitesize Bio (watch this space, we’ve got some cool stuff in store), we thought this would be a good time to look back at the best articles we published in…

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PARP-1 Inhibition: A Bench to Clinic Success Story?

Recently, someone very close to me went through chemotherapy for a fairly common yet very scary cancer. One night as we were going over her treatments and how they were going to affect the rest of her body I compared our cancer treatments to using the biggest hammer possible, hitting a building and hoping that…

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Go Huddle Around The Culture Dish

Spearheaded by Bitesize Bio Superstar Suzanne Kennedy, our good friends at Mo Bio Laboratories have started an excellent blog called The Culture Dish, which is well worth taking a look at. MoBio’s expertise is in developing technologies for nucleic acid isolation and purification from environmental microbial samples, so their blog focuses on that domain. It…

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Admirable Maggots?

Any dedicated consumer of historical fiction or costume-epic movies knows that maggots applied to festering wounds by a folk healer will save the protagonist when all seems lost. Why we don’t use maggots in Western medicine? Well, some of us do.

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The Role of the FDA in Molecular Diagnostics

When was the last time you had to give blood or a swab sample for a test, such as for a cold or flu, or some other virus? Have you ever wondered about the accuracy of the test results? If the test is FDA approved, then you can rest easy knowing that the test went…

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Are You Armored?

Are you tired of having to clean dingy, moldy waterbaths? Or tired of babysitting the heat block to make sure the temperature stayed where you set it? Well there is a new solution to this problem. I just recently discovered something called Bath Armor by a company called Lab Armor. I was walking by my…

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A Stephen Jay Gould Highlight Reel

With it almost being Darwin Day, it seems only right to review a book on perhaps the best popularizer of evolutionary biology in the 20th Century, Stephen Jay Gould.

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Around The Blogs

Our highlights from the blogosphere this week include cloning woolly mammoths, the logistics of tissue culture entertainment and Google’s efforts to save the world. Back from the dead. Sandra Porter at Discovering Biology in a Digital World covers the recent cloning of some long frozen mice by a Japanese group, which could take us one…

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Gates Foundation Innovations on Funding Science

All fields in Science thrive on fresh ideas that contest accepted theory. Yet, researchers seeking funded face ever greater competition for limited funds – funds that are overly wedded to safe, unadventurous research.

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Assessing the Bitesize Bio Experience

With the new design for Bitesize Bio, I thought it appropriate for a re-assessment of what blogging here means to me. Nick started this site as a blog for molecular biology, with a bit of a dream to turn it into a community for aspiring molecular biologists. By providing a mix of personal development, technique…

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Evolution of Lager Yeasts

For something a bit more on the fun side, at least if you enjoy a pint of beer now and then – a genomic-based study has reconstructed the origins by hybridization of the lager yeast Saccharomyces pastorianus, published in the journal Genome Research [Press release]. For thousands of years, ale-type beers have been brewed with…

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A Presidential Candidate on Science Policy

What do Obama’s responses tell us about him and his support of scientifically-sound policies? Well, not necessarily that he is personally good on science – but he does apparently know how to hire decent scientific advisers, and listen to them. That is huge.

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Polarity, Diffusion, and Cellular Aging

Two recent articles provide the theoretical and experimental proof that polarity and asymmetry are reducible to something as simple as diffusion – even in a complex cellular process such as aging.

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Science as Culture

Dan shares some commentary on a review of the World Science Festival by Lawrence Krauss. At its core, science is a cultural phenomenon, complete with social customs. There are some differences between the culture of science and other cultures however…

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Sir Paul Nurse on Information in Biology

In an opinion piece in Nature, Sir Paul Nurse suggests that we supplement reductionism with studying the information content in cells. Take a look at the modern version of holism in biology.

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Ignorance and Democracy

Catching up on the news after being away for two weeks – Lawrence Krauss had short comment in the New Scientist, Stop creationists undermining school science. The very quote-worthy punchline being: Say that you are in charge of developing a state-wide high-school curriculum in French-language studies, and that you need the advice of a group…

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More on the Promise of Biomedical Breakthroughs

Following up on my post last week about Emerging Biomedical Technologies and their Promise, Nature had a timely editorial in last week’s issue. In Broken Promises, the article describes precisely the phenomenon that I was referring to: Intense public support for clinical research can be a mixed blessing – and the hunt for a vaccine…

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Emerging Biomedical Technologies and their Promise

Do you remember how around ten years ago, gene therapy was supposed to cure various inheritable diseases? Or how various discoveries herald the expected development of new vaccines (AIDS being a notable example)? Most scientists would agree that they try to ‘sell’ their research to publishers and foundations by exaggerating the importance of findings or…

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