The Search for Blood-Based Cancer Detection

Gene Yang ‘19 A large number of cancer diagnoses are made when the cancer has metastasized and is no longer curable. In order to aid in preventing this from occuring, researchers are currently working on methods of early cancer detection. One such method, CancerSEEK, was created by scientists at John Hopkins University and other institutions. CancerSEEK is a liquid biopsy—a test done on a sample … Continue reading The Search for Blood-Based Cancer Detection

Telomere Length Considerations Can Be Used for Hospital Patient Treatments

By Fatin Chowdhury ‘19 Telomeres are regions of repeated nucleotide sequences at the ends of chromosomes; while they are valuable for protecting chromosomal ends from deterioration or fusion with the ends of neighboring chromosomes, their roles among medical treatments have been mainly unknown. A recent study led by Dr. Jonathan K. Alder of The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine analyzed telomere length value and aimed … Continue reading Telomere Length Considerations Can Be Used for Hospital Patient Treatments

What SIV can Teach us About HIV’s March Throughout the Body

By Matthew Lee ‘21 Ever since it made a global impact in the 1980s, HIV has increasingly become one of the world’s most studied diseases. However, the exact mechanisms that underlie vertical HIV-1 transmission have yet to be fully understood. A research team led by Dr. Angela M. Amedee of Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center sought to investigate the early stages of HIV pathogenesis … Continue reading What SIV can Teach us About HIV’s March Throughout the Body

Figure 1. Human viability depends on many genetic variants, including those of evolutionary importance.

What Affects Human Viability?

By Maryna Mullerman ’20 Human viability is the survival of individuals after birth, and more research is needed to understand how associated genetic factors affect human survival and life expectancy. Dr. Hakhamanesh Mostafavi and researchers at Columbia University in New York developed a method to recognize genetic variants that influence human survival. The proposed method would provide information about human fitness in the environment and … Continue reading What Affects Human Viability?

DNA Packing Mechanisms in Viruses Revealed

by Julia Newman ’19 New studies on the packing of DNA in viruses show that it sometimes behaves like a fluid and other times like a solid, similar to a tube of toothpaste or a cup of sand. For this reason, it was difficult in the past for scientists to determine how DNA is packed within a viral shell. However, it turns out that viruses actually have a … Continue reading DNA Packing Mechanisms in Viruses Revealed

Breaking Barriers for DNA Insertion

By Meghan Bialt-DeCelie ’19 Fig. 1: To insert foreign DNA, electroporation is used to form pores on the cell membrane. Genetic engineering involves inserting foreign DNA into cells to perform new functions. In order for DNA to pass the cell membrane, cells are put in a specifically calibrated electric field that opens pores in the membrane in a process called electroporation. Each organism has a … Continue reading Breaking Barriers for DNA Insertion

Images of a Replisome Offer a New Look at DNA Replication

By Cerise Carey Scientists have never been able to capture an image of the molecules behind DNA replication until now. A team of researchers from Stony Brook University, Brookhaven National Laboratory, and Rockefeller University, including Dr. Huilin Li of Stony Brook University’s Department of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, were able to produce the first real structural image of a replisome using electron microscopy techniques. A … Continue reading Images of a Replisome Offer a New Look at DNA Replication

GMO-less GMOs

By Meghan Bialt-DeCelie Image Acquired from: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cas9 Figure 3: The Cas9 complex can be used for modifying the genome of edible plants without introducing foreign DNA   Although genetically modified organisms with DNA from another species (GMOs) have effectively maintained food supply, recently, there have been concerns about the safety of consuming them. To avoid the shunned upon and highly regulated label of GMO, researchers from … Continue reading GMO-less GMOs