A new tactic has been developed to fight bacteria not by killing them but by ruining their genetic conversations. Which results ultimately in killing them… But the process focuses on interrupting ”quorum sensing“. Quorum sensing synchronizes group behavior to institute pathogenesis. This new method of altering the receptions of a bacteria will open new pathways to fight harmful bacteria and put another hurdle they will have to evolve over.The method involved works by blocking the receptors of harmful bacterial so they can not recieve signals from other bacterial. This isolation will allow them to be unable to become stronger as a whole, work together to be stronger, and share drug resistances amongst their community. The act of quorum sensing is actually used in many organisms such as squids and bio films in swamps. this function has been heavily studied just for great methods like this one to be developed.
When sexual reproduction happens there is a process called imprinting that happens. This process is the act of activating genes from either the father, or mother side of the parentage. Researchers have recently uncovered that lab mice with their fathers gene Grb10, caused the mice to be more aggressive. This social dynamic was found by a group of scientists that were at the Department of Biology & Biochemistry and Centre for Regenerative Medicine, University of Bath, Claverton Down, Bath, UK and was published in the Nature Journal. This group found that mice altered during embryonic growth to shut off one gene and always activate another showed dramatically higher aggression in social situations. “Thus Grb10 is, so far, a unique imprinted gene, able to influence distinct physiological processes, fetal growth and adult behaviour, owing to actions of the two parental alleles in different tissues.” Most importantly, humans carry this gene as well. And what proves true for lab mice may prove true for us as well.
Very recently a group of scientists have found 11 genes that malaria parasites use to protect themselves against treatments. These genes can be used in conjunction with existing drugs in order to put up a stronger fight against the widespread contagion. These genes can also be used to create stronger drugs with a longer life. this research was done at Harvard and experimented on the malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. The parasite is known for its ability to quickly adapt to any drugs given to the parasite’s talent for swiftly developing resistance to multiple drugs. Hopefully this research will result in movement toward an end of this lethal disease which claims over 850,000 people annually.
An article on genetic engineering fills us in the advances to pick traits for a baby. The potential of endless genetic modification is becoming less science fiction, and more science fact. From changing how our taste buds register unhealthy food to making sure your child has baby blue eyes, the possibilities are endless. By creating our first synthetic organism we are one step closer to the era of designer babies. On the flipside of course is generally people should not be in charge of such decisions. As a species we tend to abuse any power we are given and should not be trusted with such a large responsibility. But for the chance to possibly cure disease and have the most streamlined bodily functions it is near impossible to put a halt to the progress being made.
Before I read this article I would of bet good money that identical twins genes are identical, and I would have lost. Research done by Geneticist Carl Bruder of the University of Alabama at Birmingham and his colleagues showed the differences in the genome of two identical twins. Until Bruder came upon these findings any differences in the lives of twins was labeled as an environmental cause. Now the census is to look at the twins and their genome. Maybe it is not all environmental causes that allow one twin to have a disease and the other to be healthy. The article told about how twins have multiple copies of genes. These areas, instead of having a two sets of genetic data, have multiple gene copies. These areas are in a state of copy number variants. The easiest way for researchers to separate nature vs nurture was to do testing on twins. Because of the previous notion that there were genetically similar it eliminated a variable, but that variable may be back after Carl Bruders findings. But instead twins can help scientists find specific gene locus that identify genetic disorders. Another interesting point of this research was to help put the right twin in jail! In Virgina alone there are 80 pairs of identical twins in jail. If one twin is seeing committing a crime, and the other has no alibi it can be hard for a court to decide who is guilty. “So hopefully looking at copy number variants of two twins can help sort that out.”
This article discusses the genes which cause progeria and how scientists have recently created a model to understand this disease. This disease causes premature aging by affecting the gene for coding protein lamin A. This results in mishaped cell nuclei and causes those with Progeria to die in their teens from a heart attack or stroke. While in the past scientists had only mouse models for this disease, now with the use of stem cell research there are human models. These scientists located in Hong Kong and Singapore now have groundbreaking research to undertake with this new model that will hopefully take steps toward ending progeria.
It is really great that already stem cell research is showing up to be substantial to possibly curing various disease. I fully support the research because it has proven itself helpful and after understanding a disease you can counter it.