COFFEE BREAK NEWS FOR LIFE SCIENTISTS

laboratory

Scientists Successfully Folded a Protein Within a Protein

A research group from Singapore has developed a bacterial protein nanoparticle shell which folds and protects recombinant proteins within it. A fundamental breakthrough in the rapidly expanding field of synthetic biology, this technology can improve yields of proteins with biological activity by 100-fold and shield recombinant proteins from heat, harsh chemicals and proteolysis.

DNA puzzle

Single Base Editing Is Now Possible With CRISPR

Researchers have reached a new milestone in CRISPR technology by building an enzyme that can directly transform a DNA base pair from an A-T to a G-C. It will allow for more precise edits than ever before, opening doors for “DNA surgeries” and correction of mutations that cause human diseases.

wave

Scientists Develop Sound Wave FACS Technology

Researchers from Singapore have developed a highly precise single-cell sorting alternative to the popular FACS that uses focused sound waves instead of harsher electric fields. Their detection mechanism also shrinks the instrument size, reduces its complexity and substantially lessens costs. In addition, it enables more accurate cell  sorting and leaves no damage to target cells.

vaccination

World-First Trial for Universal Flu Vaccine

The world’s first widespread human testing of a universal flu vaccine against influenza has begun in the UK. Rather than focusing on antibody production, the new vaccine stimulates the immune system to boost influenza-specific T-cells and aims to protect the elderly who are particularly susceptible.

Browser

What Web Browsers and Proteins Have in Common

One more piece of the protein puzzle was solved when researchers discovered molecular add-ons” that can customize protein interfaces. They represent a previously unknown fundamental driving principle which ensures that proteins interact in their own specific ways.

DNA

Researchers Developed a Molecule-Sorting DNA Nanorobot

Bioengineers from the Californian Institute of Technology developed DNA robots that can autonomously walk, sort, and work together – all at once. The robots are “programmed” to transport molecules into predetermined locations and may provide many intriguing applications in medicine and nanoengineering.