Scissors get stuck—another way bacteria use CRISPR/Cas9

In biotech these days, CRISPR/Cas9 is a hot topic, because of its utility as a precise gene editing tool. Before humans repurposed it, CRISPR/Cas9 was a sort of internal immune system bacteria use to defend themselves against ...

A 'biomultimeter' to measure RNA and protein production in real-time

Builders of genetic circuits face the same quandary as builders of digital circuits: testing their designs. Yet unlike bioengineers, engineers have a simple and universal testing tool—the multimeter—that they can touch ...

Key acid-activated protein channel identified

Johns Hopkins researchers have discovered a long-sought protein, the proton-activated chloride channel (PAC), that is activated in acidic environments and could protect against the tissue-damaging effects of stroke, heart ...

Location is everything for plant cell differentiation

While the fate of most human cells is determined by their lineage—for example, renal stem cells go on to form the kidney while cardiac progenitor cells form the heart—plant cells are a little more flexible. Research shows ...

Crop yield in maize influenced by unexpected gene 'moonlighting'

Maize is a staple crop that came from humble beginnings. If you look at its wild ancestor, teosinte, the plant looks nearly unrecognizable. Human selection has persuaded the maize plant to grow in a way that produces higher ...

Electrical signals kick off flatworm regeneration

Unlike most multicellular animals, planarian flatworms can regrow all their body parts after they are removed. This makes them a good model for studying the phenomenon of tissue regeneration. They are also useful for exploring ...

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