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Unique and persistent IDs for improved reproducibility: Addgene now supports RRIDs and compact identifiers for all plasmids

Posted by Angela Abitua on Nov 20, 2018 3:17:00 PM

Have you ever found yourself frustrated reading through a paper to find that there is insufficient information about which reagents were used? Unambiguous identification of a reagent is crucial for reproducibility because mistakes in this can lead to wasted time or retractions.

Using a catalog number for identifying a reagent can be helpful, but it lacks context unless it links to a verified description of that reagent online. Furthermore, if the link between the catalog number and reagent description is lost (e.g. a supplier is bought out by another company and catalog number changes) the original identifier loses its meaning, making it difficult or impossible for researchers to track down that resource. A more long-term solution is the use of unique persistent identifiers (PIDs), a long-lasting way to identify and reference documents, files, or physical reagents.

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Topics: Reproducibility

Plasmids 101: Biotinylation

Posted by Alyssa Cecchetelli on Nov 15, 2018 8:50:12 AM

Biotin and its binding partner avidin are commonly used today in molecular biology for an array of different techniques and protocols. In this post we will discuss the natural role of biotin, biotinylation, the discovery of the biotin-avidin interaction and the uses of biotinylation in molecular biology!

Learn about in vivo biotinylation of bacterial fusion proteins

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Topics: Plasmids 101

Academic vs. industry postdocs

Posted by Guest Blogger on Nov 13, 2018 8:22:32 AM

This post was contributed by Laura Desrochers, a postdoctoral scientist at AstraZeneca.

Why I chose an industry postdoc

I’m currently doing an industry postdoc in neuroscience at AstraZeneca’s Waltham site after doing a brief academic postdoc. Why did I switch? Well, my long-term goal was to enter industry since I was drawn to the idea of working as a team to develop therapies that could directly impact patients. And, to be honest, I’ve never enjoyed grant-writing. The more I talked to people with industry experience, the more I heard that getting into industry early would only help.

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Topics: Career

Natural or synthetic? How Addgene’s dataset reveals trends in biological innovation

Posted by Jennifer Tsang on Nov 8, 2018 10:47:22 AM

For the last 14 years, scientists have been coming to the Addgene website in search of plasmids. Now, scientists are beginning to see Addgene as a large data set. Addgene has over 65,000 plasmids in the repository, each verified by sequencing, which makes the repository a convenient source of sequence data.

A group of scientists from MIT tapped into this data to learn about trends in synthetic biology and DNA synthesis. They published their results in a paper in Nature Communications announcing a new bioinformatics tool that can predict whether a gene is natural or synthetic just by looking at its sequence.

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Topics: Synthetic Biology

Starter Guide to induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSCs) Part 2:  Reprogramming and Transdifferentiation

Posted by Guest Blogger on Nov 6, 2018 8:12:52 AM

This post was contributed by Kusumika (Kushi) Mukherjee.

The ultimate goal in the field of regenerative medicine is to replace lost or damaged cells. Here, I will discuss the two major processes by which an adult somatic cell is converted to a different cell type for regeneration and repair and situations where one process is favored over the other.

Visit Our Stem Cell Pages

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