Biotechnology is a field of biology which utilizes biological systems like microorganisms to produce valuable products, such as biofuels, drugs, and vaccines.

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A good book for history of biology/biotechnology for lay people

I have many friends who are interested in Biology and want to know more about the subject in general (like a history of biology, from Darwin's theory, to DNA structure discovery, to the human genome ...
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1answer
926 views

How are we able to find the specific sites at which DNA binding proteins bind?

We know that some DNA binding proteins are site specific, that is they recognise and bind to a specific nucleotide sequence. My question is how can we precisely tell at which sites they bind? Is it ...
9
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1answer
65 views

Use of Gene Guns

Gene guns (biolistic particle delivery systems) use gold or tungsten atoms coated with plasmid DNA and bombard it on cells. Their use, as far as I understand, is mostly limited to plant cells. From ...
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2answers
224 views

Electricity generated by the body and its applications?

I recently came across this article from Nature. In it, it states that the snails have "tiny biofuel cells that extract electrical power from the glucose and oxygen in the snail’s blood", and that the ...
8
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2answers
285 views

Can forensic DNA analysis be used to generate a visual approximation of a suspect?

In light of the current US supreme court case, I'm curious if enough information can be teased out of a DNA sample to get a "reasonable" approximation of the suspect (never mind the legality). I ...
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3answers
110 views

Can any enzyme be produced?

After reading about how recombinant insulin is produced, the following question occured to me. Does the current level of technology allow any enzyme to be produced in a similar way? As I see, ...
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1answer
112 views

Is 1 g/l living biomass for a Biogas fermenter plausible?

A usual number for a healthy biogas fermenter is $10^9 - 10^{10}/mL$ Bacteria, 10-15% of which would be methanogenic archae. Exceptionally healthy fermenters have more total bacteria and up 25% ...
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4answers
870 views

Appropriate Buffer for electerophoresis of DNA & Protein TBE or TAE?

Which buffer is best for DNA Electrophoresis and which is best for Protein to be have a sharp bond? Considering a higher electrical conductivity compared to TAE & TBE and the generation of less ...
5
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2answers
407 views

What medical and commercial proteins are made using genetically modified animals?

Recombinant technologies in micro-organisms being used to produce commercial and medically useful proteins like insulin are fairly common. However some proteins are still produced commercially in ...
5
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1answer
283 views

Ethanol production by fermentation?

As bacteria are involved in the production of ethanol through fermentation and ethanol is also used as antiseptic that kills bacteria, so how and why bacteria are involved in the synthesis of such ...
5
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1answer
192 views

Is there a protocol for freezing and thawing Bacillus subtilis cells?

There is a book that says to store Bacillus spores in 50% glycerol at -70 degrees Celsius (doesn't mention if the 50% is final concentration or not). But from what I know, the cells themselves can be ...
4
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1answer
146 views

How does NHEJ cause indels?

I was reading up on CRISPR-cas9 and how it works and I am having trouble wrapping my head around how NHEJ to repair the DSB can cause indels to occur. Shouldn't the NHEJ just stick the two strands of ...
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1answer
43 views

Oligonucleotide purification with desalting

I have ordered 36bp oligonucleotides that anneal to each other and create sticky ends to be cloned in a vector afterwards. I have tried cloning many times with different methods and I failed. Now I ...
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1answer
118 views

Will genetically modified food affect our health?

It's a popular public sentiment that - GM foods like tomatoes (flavr savr) will affect our health.. Is there any logical scientific explanation behind this?
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4answers
187 views

Translation of mRNA?

We inserted an insulin gene from human into bacteria. Will translation of the gene (protein formation) occur in bacteria? If translation occurs then why does it occurs, give a reason for this?
3
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3answers
1k views

How to increase the shelf life of yogurt without refrigeration?

When we make yogurt at home and do not refrigerate it, it will become sour because of conversion of lactose into lactic acid by Lactobacillus bacteria, but this does not happen in case of Nestle's ...
3
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2answers
4k views

What is the purpose of measuring both VS (volatile solid) and TS (total solid)?

In the biogas process you often measure Volatile solid and Total solids. Can any one explain these concepts more accurately and why it is interesting to look at these properties. The biogas process ...
3
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1answer
36 views

Telomere and its effect on aging

The cloned sheep, Dolly, was said to have died very soon because the cells used to create it were taken from an adult sheep with an aged telomere. Why doesn't this happen with humans? Why aren't we ...
3
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1answer
351 views

Consumption of NAD+ in glycolysis

Out of 10 steps in glycolysis, only one reaction- Glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate (G3P) to 1,3-bisphosphoglycerate (PGP), uses NAD+ and thereby producing NADH. Furthermore, this very step is solely ...
3
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1answer
62 views

How do you express and detect GLP-1 receptors?

I am currently working with a peptide which is an analogue for glp-1, but during invitro studies am not able to detect for the presence of GLP1- receptors. The cell line used is Min-6. How do I detect ...
3
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2answers
105 views

Need help in codon optimization

I want to chemically synthesize a GFP gene for expressing in rice.I am using the IDT Codon Optimization program and found that not all the codons are 100% optimized. Some of them are the 2nd or 3rd in ...
3
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1answer
92 views

What is the Baculovirus and how does it help in research?

I was reading up about Biotechnology and the use of insects, and came across an interesting article about Insect Cell culture Techniques that specifically talked about the usage of the Baculovirus. If ...
3
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1answer
96 views

How to inhibit formation of specific antibodies (to antisera)?

Is there a way to inhibit an antibody response to a specific antigen using immunosupression? I am interested in reducing the anti-antibody formation to animal antibodies such as murine antibodies in ...
3
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1answer
160 views

Enzyme Assay - pectinase

During assaying an enzyme at high temperature, the substrate (Pectin) is degraded by the high temperature rather than by enzyme, so, how can I minimize degradation of the substrate by the temperature? ...
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0answers
40 views

Can I purify polyhydroxyalkanoates by heating the cells extensively?

Traditional methods of purifying polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) and other bioplastics made by bacteria involve washing the cells with harsh chemicals or strong bases.I'm interested in maintaining the ...
2
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2answers
117 views

Alternatives to PCR

PCR uses cycles of heating and cooling to denature the strands, calling for special thermostable DNA polymerases. In a cell, during replication, Helicase unwinds the DNA without the requirement of ...
2
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1answer
98 views

Does opening the lid of the spectrophotometer affect my results?

If I'm performing an experiment using a spectrophotometer and I mistakenly forgot to close the lid on the spectrophotometer, would that affect my results?
2
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1answer
991 views

Why does the pET- expression vector contain a LacI gene additionally to the one in the genome?

The pET plasmid is used for protein expression with T7 promotor in expression strains, such as E.coli BL21(DE3) It contains a lacI gene which codes for the lac repressor protein, a protein of ...
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1answer
37 views

Optimizing Gel Electrophoresis: Ampere, Volts and Buffer concentrations

I am a master student in biochemistry, and I have used gel electrophoresis many times before. What I want to know is how one should adjust the mA (mAmpere) compared to the voltage and the buffer one ...
2
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1answer
71 views

How do I make conclusions from the autoradiograph of a Southern blot?

Here's another question taken from "Concepts of Genetics," Klug et al (10ed), revolving around a paternity test. PCR and a Southern blot were carried out in order to determine whether 3 chimpanzees ...
2
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1answer
106 views

Pectinase Enzyme Assay

I am working on pectinase enzyme assay. I incubated 900 ul of substrate for 10 minutes in the water bath, followed by adding 2ml of DNSA reagent, then 100ul of enzyme extract added finally i read the ...
2
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1answer
21 views

Question regarding 2 constructs of tobacco plant

Six independent transformation experiments of tobacco leaf explants were carried out using two different constructs - (1) construct I containing only a Hygromycin-resistance gene $(HYG^R)$ as a ...
2
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1answer
8k views

How does a TOPflash/FOPflash assay work to detect beta-catenin protein expression?

I am reading an article (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3596711/) wherein a TOPflash/FOPflash assay is used to detect beta-catenin protein levels in a COS-7 cell line. I can't find a good ...
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2answers
107 views

Databases for metabolic pathways of human disease

Which databases contain the metabolic pathway of human diseases? I have searched Metacyc and KEGG but didn't find the appropriate metabolic pathway.
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1answer
88 views

Is the book “Bioinformatics for Geneticists” outdated?

I am going to be working with genetics data in my organization's data warehouse next year and helping our biotechnology department. I work in academic research, but I have very little genomics ...
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1answer
321 views

How to learn DNA Origami

Can you tell me is there any good softwares and tutorials which can be used to learn DNA Origami. I am new to this and want to learn from basics. Advance thanks for your help edited: INSILICO
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0answers
45 views

Why is there a size limit on inserts that a plasmid can accept?

Throughout my undergraduate education I have been taught that plasmids can't carry very large inserts, but I have never been told why. Any insight would be greatly appreciated.
2
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0answers
38 views

Why does bacillus thuringiensis produce bt toxin?

Background : B.thuringiensis produces an inactive crystalline toxin during sporulation which when ingested by an insect, gets activated and causes pore formation in gut , subsequently leading to death ...
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0answers
48 views

What should be the distance between plant promoter and gene?

I am trying to clone a rice gene under a different endogenous rice promoter.I will be cloning the CDS of the rice gene.So I wanted to know what is the minimum or maximum distance I should put between ...
2
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0answers
260 views

What specifically allows alpha-complementation in beta-galactosidase?

I'm familiar with the use of alpha-complementation of beta-galactosidase with the pUC alpha-peptide and the M15 lacZ gene product, and would like to hypothetically apply alpha-complementation in other ...
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1answer
61 views

How to synthesize and isolate single stranded cDNA from an RNA template?

I would like to have pure single stranded cDNA of my choice. I am thinking of reverse transcription from RNA (obtained by in vitro transcription), degrading RNA from RNA-DNA hybrid with RNase-H, ...
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2answers
165 views

Modern alternatives of DNA footprinting

Since DNA footprinting is an old method I thought there may be some more recent and effective methods to identify a DNA sequence, do you know any of them?
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2answers
166 views

How does the sticky ends of foreign gene bind with its counterpart in the plasmid DNA if positions are not matching?

Consider a foreign gene with recognition sequence as GAATTC for EcoR1. Now suppose that it is being cut at two palindromic sequence to form sticky ends. Here the sticky ends are formed such that ...
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1answer
221 views

What is the expected effect of pH on the activity of a fungal pectinase?

I am working on an enzyme assay for a fungal pectinase.I assayed the enzyme in different buffers from pH 1-12.5 However,the enzyme has good activities starting from pH1-10.5. Is it possible to have ...
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1answer
154 views

Why use DNA polymerase in making cDNA?

RT is capable of synthesizing a complementary dna strand ( as in HIV life cycle.) Then why is DNA pol used when cDNA (synthesizing the second strand of it ) has to be synthesized from mRNA ( For eg.to ...
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1answer
32 views

How can I accurately measure glucose concentration in culture media?

I am trying to identify the best way to measure glucose concentration in culture media with E. coli. Now, I imagine I can use those glucose meters that diabetic people use, but unfortunately can't ...
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1answer
25 views

What's the rationale behind freezing one's eggs if cells can be cloned?

It seems to me there's a lot of discussions around the topic of somebody freezing her eggs. What I don't understand though are the following: Why would you freeze your eggs when you know that the ...
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2answers
64 views

If a given DNA oligo is an aptamer, will the corresponding RNA oligo with the same sequence be an aptamer aswell?

Functionality of aptamers depends upon the oligo's sequence and secondary structure. So, if I take a DNA aptamer and make an RNA oligo of the same sequence (T replaced with U obviously), will this RNA ...
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1answer
18 views

Colormetric assay for a phenol product?

I am working on an assay for phenol products created by a colony of bacteria. I have searched up a paper that involves gibbs reageant but the protocol is kind of unclear. Does any of you know where I ...
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1answer
38 views

RNAi in nematode resistant plants

Background : Certain plants have been genetically engineered to have sense-antisense gene of a parasitic nematode. The dsRNA produced by the plant then inactivates the mRNA produced in the nematode, ...