Latest Posts

All Posts

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.

Read More >

Topics: Synthetic Biology, Other

Synthetic Biology, Artificial Chromosomes, iGEM & More - Interview with Tom Ellis

Posted by Tyler Ford on Nov 29, 2017 9:00:00 AM

Today’s episode of the Addgene Podcast features guest host and Addgene European Outreach Scientist, Benoit Giquel. Traveling from our offices just outside of London, it was a short journey for Benoit to interview Addgene Advisory Board Member and lead researcher at Imperial College London, Dr. Tom Ellis. Dr. Ellis does research in synthetic biology and bioengineering including a recent effort to construct a synthetic yeast chromosome. Listen to learn more about Dr. Ellis, synthetic biology, synthetic chromosomes, and obstacles to becoming an academic researcher.

Read More >

Topics: Synthetic Biology, Other

Adapting Toehold Switches to Detect Zika Virus

Posted by Guest Blogger on Aug 30, 2016 10:30:00 AM

This post was contributed by guest bloggers Keith Pardee and Alexander A. Green.

Zika background

First identified in 1947 in Uganda, the Zika virus had received little attention and, for the most part, had been associated with low morbidity and mild symptoms. This changed in January with the report of an outbreak of the virus in Brazil that was correlated with greater rates of infection and rare, but severe, symptoms, including the development of fetal microcephaly and Guillain-Barré syndrome. In response, the World Health Organization has declared a global health emergency and called for the fast-tracked development of diagnostics. Mostly transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes (aegypti and albopictus) and, aided by international travel, the Zika virus is expected to expand into heavily populated regions of South, Central, and North America. Diagnostics will play an important role in helping to monitor and slow this spread until vaccine programs can be put in place to provide community protection.

Read More >

Topics: Synthetic Biology, Other Plasmid Tools, Plasmids

Recombinase-based State Machines Enable Order-dependent Logic in vivo

Posted by Guest Blogger on Jul 28, 2016 10:30:00 AM

This post was contributed by guest blogger Nathaniel Roquet, a PhD student in the Harvard Biophysics program and researcher in the Lu Lab at MIT.

Note: The following blog post reduces the content of our paper, “Synthetic recombinase-based state machines in living cells” (1), into a more straight-forward, concise explanation of how to adapt our engineered devices, recombinase-based state machines for your own experimental needs. For more context, exposition, and detail, please refer to the paper.

Why might one be interested in state machine technology?

Biological research has produced a massive amount of information regarding which regulatory proteins, signaling molecules, mutations, and environmental conditions drive certain cellular behaviors, but little is known about the order or timing of these factors. Recombinase-based state machines (RSMs), which take on a particular DNA-sequence configuration (state) based on the identity and order of a particular set of inputs, may be used to better understand and engineer cellular processes that are influenced by temporally ordered biochemical events.

Read More >

Topics: Synthetic Biology, Other Plasmid Tools, Plasmids

Using Phosphoserine to Study Protein Phosphorylation

Posted by Guest Blogger on Jun 23, 2016 10:30:00 AM

This post was contributed by guest blogger Natalie Niemi, a postdoctoral fellow at the Morgridge Institute for Research in Madison, Wisconsin.

It is commonly cited that approximately one-third of cellular proteins are modified through phosphorylation (1). However, the expansion of studies on protein phosphorylation in an array of model systems coupled with advances in mass spectrometry suggest that phosphorylation is far more prevalent than previously appreciated. PhosphoSitePlus, one of the most inclusive databases of post-translational modifications, identifies a staggering ~250,000 phosphorylation events in the proteomes of higher mammals (2). How can we begin to understand the importance of any of these phosphorylation events on the activity of a given protein?

Read More >

Topics: Synthetic Biology, Other Plasmid Tools, Plasmids

Click here to subscribe to the Addgene Blog
 
Subscribe

 

All Topics

see all

Recent Posts