Contributors

Contributors

Contributors

Hans Kristian Kotlar began his career as a cancer researcher and says he was "the last idealist who left to turn industrialist." His professed "love of a pretty woman" lured him to another part of Norway, where ended up using his early training in polymer chemistry to work for StatoilHydro, the Norwegian state oil company which chiefly operates in the North Sea. Now the head of StatoilHydro's

Editorial

Back in Black

Back in Black

Here's how microorganisms may be the power plants of the future.

Mail

Mail

Mail

It's us vs. cancer This "new" strategy, in which cancer researchers beat the disease by collaborating in massive projects,1 is bound to fail. Why? Because enforced cooperation for the sake of obtaining research grants is counterproductive to a physiologic matching of research interests, including a viable chemistry between participating scientists. The European grant programs for coo

Uncategorized

Fancy this

Fancy this

By Andrea Gawrylewski Fancy this AFRMA Show Orange County Fair Best AOCP, Best Standard, Blue Splashed "KK2125-2" owned and bred by Karen Robbins.Photo by Craig RobbinsOne year ago this month, Jennifer Hipsley brought seven of her best mice to the East Coast Mouse Association's first mouse show in Lynchburg, Va. Her mice had an array of colorful coats, including splashes of chocolate, or black with striped

Sticky speciation

Sticky speciation

By Elie Dolgin Sticky speciation A limnetic male stickleback (top) would rather mate with a female of his own species than with the benthic female (bottom).Courtesy of Ernie CooperZoologist Jennifer Gow had a hunch. So she booted up her laptop, launched Google Earth, and zoomed in on Nelson Island, a small, largely unpopulated island along the British Columbia coastline. Gow, a postdoc at the University of Bri

Can Bacteria Rescue the Oil Industry?

Can Bacteria Rescue the Oil Industry?

Can Bacteria Rescue the Oil Industry? Microbes in oil deposits withstand enormous hydrocarbon loads, intense heat, high salt and immense pressure. How can we put them to work for us? By Hans Kristian Kotlar n a cold December day in 1998, I was swimming in my survival suit in the Trondheim-fjord, Norway, practicing for the offshore certificate. The certificate would give me access to one of the oceanic drilling installations of StatoilHydro, among the bigge

Future Oil

Future Oil

Future Oil The Cargill salt ponds south of San Francisco. Courtesy of Cargill Inset: Courtesy of Solazyme Biofuels made from algae are the next big thing on the alternative energy horizon. But can they free us from our addiction to petroleum? By Bob Grant ear the southern horn of San Francisco Bay, hectares of shallow ponds the color of blood, pumpkin pie, and murky emerald stretch out across crusty salt flats in an aqueous patchwork.

Fungal fuel

Fungal fuel

Jack Newman, senior vice president of research and co-founder of biotech company Amyris, once believed algae would serve as the next biofuel. As a young postdoc in the lab of University of California, Berkeley, synthetic biologist Jay Keasling, Newman floated the idea of starting an algal biofuel company at one of the informal pitch parties Keasling would hold for his students at his house. B

Video: iGem

Video: iGem

iGEM: Videos Five teams from iGEM 2008 give a rundown of their projects.function showForumVideo(n, videoId,name) { expand(n); var elm = document.getElementById("expandee" + n); if (elm) { elm.innerHTML = name+"[- Hide video]" + "" + ""; trackvideo(name); } }function hideForumVideo(n, videoId) { var elm = document.getElementById("expandee" + n); if (elm) { elm.innerHTML = " "; } collapse(n); }function expand(n) { showElm("exp

Standardize What?

Standardize What?

What is a "part," anyway? And how can I compare yours to mine?

Brick by Brick

Brick by Brick

Brick by Brick All Photos courtesy of iGEM and David Appleyard Now five years old, a student competition in synthetic biology embodies the struggles of the emerging discipline. By Alla Katsnelson n a November weekend, more than 800 people gathered at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to show off six months of hard work. Each person wore one of 84 different shirts; some had a classic, young, professional design, while others ado

Mapping with Mice

Mapping with Mice

Nancy Jenkins' decision to combine molecular biology with formal genetics uncovered key mutations involved in development and cancer. Plus, the couple that publishes (700+ papers) together, stays together - just ask her husband, Neal Copeland.

Notebook

Antifungal fight

Antifungal fight

Kishor Wasan, a pharmacologist at the University of British Columbia, needed a negative control. It was 2000, and he was investigating a new way to deliver anti-fungal drugs in pill form, generally cheaper and easier to administer than intravenous injections. "I said, 'Let's take a drug I know doesn't work'," Wasan recalls. He turned to amphotericin B, an antifungal membrane disruptor that Wasan

Energy from E. coli

Energy from E. coli

From left: Jay Keasling with Francesco Pingitore and Chris Petzold. Credit: Courtesy of Lawrence Berkeley Nat'l Lab - Roy Kaltschmidt, photographer" />From left: Jay Keasling with Francesco Pingitore and Chris Petzold. Credit: Courtesy of Lawrence Berkeley Nat'l Lab - Roy Kaltschmidt, photographer Jay Keasling watches as 700 billion Escherichia coli swish around inside a benchtop bioreactor in the brand-spanking new

Catching crabs

Catching crabs

Blue Crab Credit: Wpopp / Wikimedia" />Blue Crab Credit: Wpopp / Wikimedia It was late last September when 73-year-old farmer Archie Page pulled a six-inch blue crab out of his pond in Swansboro, NC. After catching it, Page spent the day parading around in his pick-up with the crab in the back. "I couldn't believe it," he says with a soft Southern twang. Two months later, standing on a rickety dock a

Opinion

Time for an IP Share Market?

Time for an IP Share Market?

Direct investment in market-valued intellectual property could drive translational success.

Column

Facts First

Facts First

In my youth, I designed a cell biology course I thought grad students would love. They hated it.

Books etc.

B2AR Laid Bare

B2AR Laid Bare

A snapshot of the adrenaline target opens the door to more high-resolution, 3-D crystal structures.

Hot Paper

Receptor deciphered

Receptor deciphered

Credit: courtesy of Jayasankar Jasti, Hiroyasu Furukawa, Eric B. Gonzales, Eric Gouaux" /> Credit: courtesy of Jayasankar Jasti, Hiroyasu Furukawa, Eric B. Gonzales, Eric Gouaux The paper: E. Gouaux et al. "Structure of acid-sensing ion channel 1 at 1.9 Å resolution and low pH," Nature, 449:316-23, 2007. (Cited in 68 papers) The finding: Neuroscientist Er

microRNA: target this

microRNA: target this

Credit: Courtesy of Janez Plavec" /> Credit: Courtesy of Janez Plavec The paper: A. Grimson, et al., "MicroRNA targeting specificity in mammals: determinants beyond seed pairing," Mol Cell, 27:91-105, 2007. (Cited in 109 papers) The bottom line: Massachusetts Institute of Technology biologist David Bartel and colleagues constructed an algorithm to predict miRNA target sites on untranslated

Junction function

Junction function

Credit: AP Liao, et al. / public library of science" /> Credit: AP Liao, et al. / public library of science The paper: M.J. Evans, et al., "Claudin1 is a hepatitis C virus co-receptor required for a late step in entry," Nature, 446:801-5, 2007. (Cited in 81 papers) The finding: In attempts to find out why hepatitis C virus (HCV) would not infect any cell type except liver, Matthew Evans at

Scientist To Watch

Michelle Chang: A catalyst for change

Michelle Chang: A catalyst for change

Credit: © Eric Millette" /> Credit: © Eric Millette As a child, Michelle Chang would sit listlessly in a University of California, San Diego, lab while her mother, a geneticist, ran experiments. As hours ticked by on the lab clock, the young Chang made a decision: she would not grow up to be a researcher. But after only a handful of introductory science classes her freshman year at UCSD, Chang became so excited about

Lab Tools

Freeze Frame

Freeze Frame

How to troubleshoot sample preparation for cryo-electron microscopy, an up-and-coming structural biology technique.

BioBusiness

Profiting from Pluripotency

Profiting from Pluripotency

How companies plan to make money (really) off of embryonic stem cells.

Pulse Oximeter

Retiring from Science

Retiring from Science

How to plan a smooth career exit in a crumbling economy.

Foundations

Darwin vs. His Dad, circa 1831

Darwin vs. His Dad, circa 1831

In a letter to his father, Robert, Charles listed the elder Darwin's objections to his proposed voyage around the world. Credit: Reproduced by kind permission of the Syndics of Cambridge University Library" />In a letter to his father, Robert, Charles listed the elder Darwin's objections to his proposed voyage around the world. Credit: Reproduced by kind permission of the Syndics of Cambridge University Library