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What Good Citizenship Can Do for Reproducibility in Science

Posted by Guest Blogger on Nov 7, 2019 9:18:13 AM

This post was contributed by Deborah Sweet, Vice President of Editorial at Cell Press.

Almost everyone who works in a lab struggles with reproducibility at some point.

Usually it comes up when a researcher decides on a new project and begins by trying to reproduce someone else’s result. Then, they hit trouble. The experiment won’t work. Even if it does, they don’t get the same result. So, then they end up investing time that they thought would be moving forward instead trying just to get going. It’s like being stuck in jail in Monopoly—you keep rolling the dice and not moving while all your friends are racing around the board. Eventually, you get lucky and manage to escape, but you’ve lost a lot of time.

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Topics: Scientific Sharing, Reproducibility, Scientific Publishing

FLEx Technology and Optogenetics: Flipping the switch on gene expression with high spatial and temporal resolution

Posted by Guest Blogger on Oct 17, 2019 8:28:58 AM

This post was contributed by Alessia Armezzani, scientific communication manager at genOway.

A few decades ago, the brain remained elusive, not from a lack of intellectual curiosity on the part of scientists but, rather, from the limited technologies available. Over the past few years, however, remarkable technological advances have taken researchers to the threshold of a revolution in modern neuroscience, an era in which technologies like FLEx and optogenetics meet, allowing scientists to investigate the fundamental basis of both brain function and dysfunction.

First, let’s start with the basics: What is optogenetics?

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Topics: Other Plasmid Tools, Plasmids

Troubleshooting Your Plasmid Cloning Experiment

Posted by Guest Blogger on Sep 24, 2019 8:55:00 AM

This post was contributed by Oskar Laur, head of the custom cloning core at Emory University, and Paolo Colombi, a product development scientist at Addgene.

Cloning can be quite an arduous process. The PCR could fail to produce a product, the transformation may not result in any cells, or all the colonies screened might not contain the correct plasmid. There’s a lot that can go wrong! With all the steps in the cloning process, there are also many ways to troubleshoot the cloning experiment. Here are some tips that will help you with your cloning project, and hopefully obtain your coveted plasmid with no substantial delays.

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Topics: Plasmid Cloning, Plasmids

The Scientific Conference Poster Session: Tips for Success

Posted by Guest Blogger on Aug 29, 2019 8:50:04 AM

This post was contributed by Brittany L. Uhlorn, a PhD Candidate at the University of Arizona.

Perhaps you’re about to present your first scientific poster, but unsure how best to prepare. Maybe you’re a presentation veteran, but have difficulty answering questions. Or perhaps you’re simply attending, but uncertain how to capitalize on your experience. No matter the reason for attending, your preparation and day-of game plan will ensure you have the most beneficial scientific conference experience possible.

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Topics: Science Careers, Conferences

Harnessing Bacterial Toxins for Allelic Exchange

Posted by Guest Blogger on Aug 15, 2019 8:30:02 AM

This post was contributed by Jacob Lazarus, a postdoctoral researcher at Harvard.

There’s an astounding number of ways to create chromosomal mutations in bacteria, so many that it may be difficult to decide which path to take. A quick and easy way to introduce a mutation in the chromosome is to disrupt expression of a gene with an antibiotic resistance cassette. This leaves a “scar” in the chromosome, sometimes interfering with expression of surrounding genes. However, there are ways to create scarless mutations, ones that don’t leave any undesired scars in the chromosome.

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Topics: Genome Editing, Plasmids

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