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Enabling high school research at the Journal of Emerging Investigators

Posted by Tyler Ford on Sep 5, 2018 8:01:15 AM

In this episode of the Addgene Podcast, we introduce you to the Journal of Emerging Investigators, an open-access journal that enables high school students to publish peer-reviewed scientific research. You’ll meet some of the folks behind the journal and hear from a fantastic team of high school students who recently submitted to the journal with funding from Addgene.

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Topics: Education, Podcast

"Build Your Plasmid" the game - Play to teach

Posted by Guest Blogger on Jul 17, 2018 8:23:11 AM

This guest post was contributed by Marco Straccia, an Associate Professor at University of Barcelona.

The challenge: Making courses on genetic manipulation more hands on

While teaching courses about gene therapy and genetic manipulation, I and other professors at the University of Barcelona wanted to develop strategies to make our classes more practical and hands-on. Students in these courses get plenty of theory in their lectures, but it can be difficult to determine how much information they’ve absorbed if they don’t get a chance apply it in an interactive setting.

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Topics: Education

Interview with Avital Bailen: iGEM and the OriginALS team

Posted by Tyler Ford on May 30, 2018 8:50:33 AM

In this episode of the Addgene Podcast, Addgenie Kim de Mora sits down with Avital Bailen from the "OriginALS" iGEM team at Ben-Gurion University in Beer Sheva, Israel. Avital provides a brief description of the OriginALS iGEM project below and discusses more of what she hopes to learn from the iGEM competition in the podcast.

Before we dive into the interview, we’ll briefly introduce you to Kim and iGem. By the end of this interview, we hope you’ll have a good understanding of why iGEM is an important component of scientific training for many researchers and of how the goals of iGEM and Addgene intersect in concretely useful ways for iGEM participants.

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Topics: Education, Synthetic Biology, Podcast

Educational planarian tools for teaching developmental biology techniques

Posted by Angela Kaczmarczyk on May 24, 2018 9:20:05 AM

Scientists routinely use techniques to alter gene expression or to label specific cells, but there are too few resources to teach students how to perform these experiments in the beginning. In most classrooms, the laboratory experience is focused on classical embryology techniques such as basic observation and dissections. Students don’t usually perform more modern techniques used in genetics or molecular biology because the experiments are either not accessible or too challenging for amateur scientists. Planarians, wormy creatures commonly found in freshwater ponds, provide a good potential solution to this problem. Planarians are easy to buy, cultivate, and have interesting phenotypes to study. In addition, the Sánchez lab has made it easier to perform advanced developmental biology experiments in planarians with their recent plasmid deposit.

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Topics: Education

Pathways Over Time Plasmids Engage Students in Functional Genomics Research

Posted by Guest Blogger on May 22, 2018 9:38:25 AM

This post was contributed by guest blogger Clare O'Connor an Associate Professor at Boston College.

National reports stress the importance of providing authentic research experiences to undergraduate students (1, 2), but educators face significant challenges in designing suitable projects. In the O'Connor lab, we recognized that genome sequencing projects were generating huge amounts of data that could provide the basis for student projects in introductory labs. Genome projects use computational methods to identify genes by their similarities to genes in other species, but these studies generally leave questions about gene function wide open. What if two seemingly similar proteins have acquired divergent functions due to mutations accumulated over time? Undergraduates can help to answer this question!

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Topics: Education, Hot Plasmids

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