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Foldit for fun

By | May 23, 2008

When I first heard about a computer game based on folding proteins, I must admit, I was skeptical. How fun could it possibly be to manipulate a virtual protein for points? Well, after countless hours of first hand experimentation I've arrived at an answer: Very. The game is called Foldit, and luckily for one of the game's principle founders, David Baker, a biochemist at the University of Washington, thousands of others have come to the same conclusion. Baker hopes that Foldit -- launched two we

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Senate passes NIH funding

By | May 23, 2008

Yesterday the US Senate approved linkurl:a bill;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/54650/ that includes $400 million for NIH funding. The provision is part of the Senate's Supplemental Appropriations bill for 2008, primarily intended to support the Iraq war. The bill was passed with 75 in favor, 22 opposed. President Bush has vowed to veto the bill if it contains non-military funding measures. The bill will now be sent back to the House of Representatives for a vote.

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GINA becomes law

By | May 22, 2008

President Bush signed into law the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) yesterday (May 21). GINA, which passed the House and Senate linkurl:last month,;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/54567/ prevents insurers and employers from using genetic test results to discriminate against employees.

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Mainland animal lab poses risks: GAO

By | May 22, 2008

The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has not demonstrated that moving foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) research from an island lab in New York to a linkurl:new mainland animal research facility;http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/23091/ would be safe, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) told a Congressional committee this morning (May 22). "We found that linkurl:DHS;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/54186/ has not conducted or commissioned any study" to assess whether

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Virginia U in secretive tobacco deal

By | May 22, 2008

Another US university has been found in bed with big tobacco, this time on the down-low. linkurl:The New York Times reported today;http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/22/us/22tobacco.html?pagewanted=1 that Virginia Commonwealth University entered into a contract with Philip Morris in 2006 that severely restricts researchers' ability to disseminate findings from studies funded by the tobacco company. Tobacco funding in academic research is a contentious issue, with the debate primarily centered arou

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Thousands vie for Gates grants

By | May 21, 2008

Biologists have been submitting research proposals in droves hoping to receive money from a new linkurl:Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation;http://www.gatesfoundation.org/default.htm grant program aimed at improving linkurl:global health.;http://www.the-scientist.com/2008/3/1/42/1/ As Yiwu He, Gates foundation senior program officer in global health, told me at a biomarker linkurl:meeting;http://www.biomarkerworldcongress.com/ in Philadelphia on Monday (May 19), the Gates Foundation has gotten abo

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Explorers find Brittlestar City

By | May 20, 2008

A team of researchers has discovered millions of slender, sea star-like creatures - called linkurl:brittlestars;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/19856/ - thriving on a submerged oceanic ridge in the icy waters between New Zealand and Antarctica. The researchers, Australians and New Zealanders participating in the linkurl:Macquarie Ridge Expedition,;http://censeam.niwa.co.nz/outreach/censeam_cruises/macridge linkurl:announced;http://www.coml.org/medres/medres77.htm their discovery on

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HIV vaccines: Plan B

By | May 20, 2008

linkurl:Anthony Fauci,;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/13734/ director of NIH's National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), is apparently making good on the promise to "turn the knob towards discovery" in HIV vaccine research, which he made at a linkurl:meeting;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/54488/ this March. The NIAID today (May 20) linkurl:announced;http://www.nih.gov/news/health/may2008/niaid-20.htm a five-year, $15.6 million project to fund rese

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Mitotic cells: separate but unequal

By | May 19, 2008

Mitotic cell divisions, long thought to produce two identical daughter cells, are not entirely equal, according to a new linkurl:study;http://www.pnas.org/cgi/doi/10.1073/pnas.0803027105 published this week in __Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences__. Proteins destined for degradation are preferentially inherited by one cell over the other, the researchers found. "We hit on an observation that people had missed for 100 years," said linkurl:Eddy De Robertis;http://www.hhmi.ucla.edu/de

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Monkey model for Huntington disease

By | May 19, 2008

Scientists have created the first transgenic monkey model of Huntington disease (HD), according to a linkurl:report;http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/vaop/ncurrent/abs/nature06975.html that appeared yesterday in Nature. But it's unclear how closely the model represents the disease in humans. The study, led by Anthony Chan, at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center, successfully bred five rhesus macaques with the repeated amino acid sequence CAG in the human huntingtin gene -- the tellt

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Mettler Toledo
BD Biosciences
BD Biosciences