The study of the molecular processes of the nucleus and cell function.

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1answer
393 views

How does Topoisomerase II inhibition affect cancer cells?

Topoisomerase II poisons represent some of the most important and widely prescribed anticancer drugs currently in clinical use. These drugs encompass a diverse group of natural and synthetic ...
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1answer
742 views

Molecular cause of cramps, spasms and strengthening in muscles? (incl. intro to muscle contraction)

When motor neurons are stimulated to trigger an action potential, this potential propagates down the spine, eventually reaching a neuromuscular junction, causing the release of acetylcholine (ACh). ...
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2answers
217 views

Question about equilibrium potential formula

My biology book says, that the equilibrium potential for an ion with a charge of +1 is: $$E_{ion}= 62mV \biggl(\log\frac{[ion]_{outside}}{[ion]_{inside}}\biggr)$$ Where does the 62 mV come from? How ...
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6k views

What is the difference between SOLiD, 454, and Illumina next-gen sequencing?

I've started teaching myself about next-generation sequencing in preparation for a new job, and I'm wondering what the main differences are between the 454, SOLiD, and Illumina/Solexa machines, in ...
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1answer
2k views

How does formaldehyde cause protein-DNA crosslinking?

How does formaldehyde cause protein-DNA crosslinking? I would guess it's because the strongly polar water molecule interacts strongly with polar residues on a protein-DNA complex, and adding a less ...
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2answers
66 views

How common is bacterial mediated transformation? In plants? In animal cells?

The most common method to transform plants is by soaking plant tissue in cultures of agrobacteria (this is not their current classification) which transfer DNA into the plants. Is lateral gene ...
4
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1answer
250 views

Why am I getting low transformation efficiency with DB3.1 E.coli cells?

I am making competent cells using DB3.1 E. coli cells. Even after following the exact protocol (Inoue method for ultracompetent cells) given in 'Sambrook and Russel', I am not getting transformation ...
5
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1answer
115 views

What is the extent of the effect of Tris on E. coli?

I was a fool and dissolved my antibiotic (Kanamycin) into Tris Buffer rather than H₂O. The Kanamycin still seems to be active but a fellow labmate mentioned that Tris messes around with the membrane ...
6
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1answer
225 views

Why does not the host produce any immune response to antiserum antibodies?

When an antiserum is injected to a person to protect oneself from a certain disease, the antibodies in the antiserum come from another organism. The question is: Why don't the injected antibodies ...
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0answers
49 views

Solid phase use in HIV rapid tests

I have another question in regards to my HIV test research. The rapid tests like Orasures Oraquick contains a strip of synthetic peptides that are used to represent proteins found in the envelope ...
2
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1answer
177 views

Can Taq polymerase be used instead of polymerase Vent exo (-)?

Instead of using polymerase Vent exo (-), can I go with the usual Taq polymerase? Do the PCR conditions change (the temperature and master mix concentrations ) in the these two conditions? Do the ...
3
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1answer
111 views

High protein turnover rate and protease inhibitors?

I work with mice, and I want to see what happens to some specific proteins in the mouse brain after IL-1b injection (intracerebroventricular). I have a problem: when I measure the mRNA and protein ...
6
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2answers
16k views

What is the function of the RNA primer in DNA replication?

During DNA replication, RNA primase puts an RNA primer in the lagging strand. What is the function of this RNA primer? Why can't the enzymes put DNA fragments directly?
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2answers
887 views

Bacterial cell lysis - what solution to use?

I am trying to determine how quickly detergents act on bacterial cells (cell lysis). I would like to compare some detergents at difference concentrations for bacteriolytic activity. I don’t care about ...
10
votes
1answer
104 views

When running a gel, what could cause a standard to run “faster” than usual?

We are running a gel on the products of a restriction digest to determine the size of an insert. We know the vector backbone size should be ~2.9kb; however, the standard appears to be running too ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages of using beta-galactosidase compared to luciferase as a reporter gene?

In the University labs, we have used Beta-galactosidase as a reporter gene to quantify the expression initiated by the stress-response promoter in yeast. This was done by exposing one of the two ...
2
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1answer
126 views

Histone marks mechanism

I am slightly confused about the mechanisms that makes histone modifications associate with gene expression. That is, H3K36me3 is believed to be present in actively transcribed genes, H3K27me3 in ...
6
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2answers
108 views

DAM enzyme distances move along the genome

I am fusing a protein with a Dam enzyme (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dam_(methylase)). The idea is that when the protein binds to the DNA, the Dam enzyme will start methylating nearby GATC sites, ...
5
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1answer
973 views

High Glucose vs Low Glucose DMEM for Cell Culture

I've noticed that in mammalian cell culture, there are often two types of DMEM available. High Glucose and Low Glucose. Does it matter which type I use for culturing of cells (e.g. Hela or HEK293)? ...
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2answers
4k views

DNA as an acid? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Does DNA react in all of the ways most other acids do? Even if DNA is made up of nucleotide bases, it is said to be an acid. Why is this?
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2answers
193 views

Do Yeast Insertion constructs revert?

If I insert a new gene with a yeast integrating plasmid and select with a drop out culture once, can I assume that the newly integrated gene will stay in the strain without putting selective pressure ...
7
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1answer
45 views

circulating microRNAs are functional?

In plasma and other body fluids, miRNAs can be found. They not only originate from dying cells but also from active secretion and are usually 'packed' into vesicles/lipo-proteic structures (i.e. ...
8
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2answers
182 views

How are antibodies designed?

Antibodies have the ability of recognising highly specific peptide sequences and bind it at their antigen-binding site. This ability is harnessed as a tool in research to purify target structures in ...
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3answers
81 views

Is DNA mutation locally energetically stabilizing the DNA molecule

I am no biologist, but as a physicist, a spontaneous mutation (seen as a chemical transformation) should lower the energy of the system, at least locally. So I wonder if any research has been done ...
8
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2answers
287 views

Do antibiotics attenuate immune response on subsequent exposure to same bacteria?

A healthy immune response to a bacterial infection includes "memory" to permit the body to thwart subsequent exposure to same bacteria. What are the dynamics of using antibiotics on initial exposure ...
12
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1answer
807 views

What did Richard Feynman contribute to molecular biology?

Some time ago, I read James Gleick's "Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman", a wonderful biography of Feynman and, by extension, most of modern physics. In this book, the author mentions ...
9
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1answer
115 views

E. coli values for [enzymes], [metabolites] and kinetic rates

In my attempt to create a metabolic model of E. coli, I have found a comprehensive list of metabolic reactions and their stoichiometry. The one I am currently using is E. coli model iJO1366 (more ...
8
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1answer
125 views

How realistic is to use DNA for long term storage?

This is mainly a followup question to the recent paper Next-Generation Digital Information Storage in DNA. Personally, while I agree about the data density of the format, I can't help point out the ...
2
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1answer
118 views

In cancer, why do cells duplicate themselves?

In regards to cancer why do cells replicate themselves? If it's a mutation, what kind of mutation would this be classified as?
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5answers
287 views

What is the lowest common denominator of cancer?

What is the lowest level attribute that all cancers share? Also, what is the highest level attributes that all cancers share?
3
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1answer
111 views

Optimization of annealing temperature

I am trying to optimize annealing temperature for some primer pairs. I have tried optimization using cDNA, genomic DNA, Taq polymerase, phusion polymerase etc., but every time I am either getting ...
8
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1answer
166 views

Is there a program that simulates biology on a molecular level?

Is there a computer program that simulates biology on a molecular level? Software that has rules that simulates the rules of molecular-biology?
2
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2answers
160 views

Do the simplest bacteria have ribosomes and helicase?

I find it interesting that all life on earth use DNA. I've seen video on how helicase and ribosomes work together to copy DNA sequences (to RNA) with helicase then recreate them using ribosomes. Does ...
3
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2answers
179 views

How do I create a probe for in situ hybridization?

I tried to make the probe several times but it failed again and again. It usually turns out that the probe after hydrolysis is very very short (maybe around 50nt). I did not check the RNA before ...
6
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1answer
212 views

What's the state of the art in designing and creating your own life forms?

What's the state of the art for solving the following problem. You imagine a set of features that you want a life-form to have. Just to take an arbitrary example, say you want your life-form to have ...
4
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2answers
81 views

How do proteins and genes participate in learning?

I am a computer scientist that studies biology and bioinformatics. In the last weeks, I have been trying to study new research directions, and I would like to deepen my knowledge on the role and ...
7
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1answer
335 views

How fast do different organs turn over cells?

It is said that the human body turns over all cells or molecules in 7 year cycles. This is not quite correct, because there are different organs changing at different speeds. My interest is what is ...
8
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2answers
86 views

Is there a Reverse Transcription optimization for long, 9kb, transcripts?

Has anyone optimized RT for long transcripts (9kb)? The downstream application will be PCR amplification and Illumina library prep. It will be trivial to make internal primers sets for the PCR that ...
11
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2answers
278 views

How do antioxidants affect human metabolism?

I'd like to know how antioxidants affect human metabolism and which ones are essential for metabolic processes.
10
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1answer
1k views

Is the eukaryotic nucleus composed of a single or double membrane?

I know that it is usually considered a double membrane like those surrounding mitochondria and chloroplasts, but I read a review that stated "according to topological details it is actually a single ...
6
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1answer
106 views

Bicoid regulation of hunchback

I'm learning about development via the example of Drosophila embryogenesis. I understand that bicoid regulates hunchback, among other genes. My question whether the regulation is direct or indirect? ...
4
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1answer
51 views

How to find ion/water channel related genes

We now have a collection of transcripts at hand. We would like to investigate some particular ones, which are ion/water channel related. How to perform this? Could anybody point out how to find the ...
10
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1answer
2k views

How does translational coupling work in prokaryotes?

Today I heard about a phenomenon called "translational coupling", where the translation of one protein influences the translation of another protein. The messenger RNA levels don't seem influenced. ...
6
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1answer
400 views

How Do Adherent Cells In Culture Attach To A Plastic Dish?

I am particularly interested in MC3T3-E1 cells (mouse fibroblasts), which are adherent cells. Are hemidesmosomes involved in anchoring the cells to the plastic dish? What (if any) other molecules are ...
6
votes
1answer
721 views

Does anyone have any TOPO directional cloning tips? [closed]

I'm just about to start working on a TOPO cloning after I couldn't get it to work with standard restriction/ligation. Does anyone have any tips for TOPO cloning?
9
votes
2answers
5k views

Why is PEG important for efficient yeast transformation?

One way to do an yeast transformation is by using lithium acetate, a single-stranded carrier DNA, and PEG (1). I was wondering why is the polyethylene glycol important for the efficient ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Primer design for introduction of restriction sites flanking a gene of interest

I am wondering what the correct method for primer design to introduce restriction sites. Specifically between two methods. 1) Primer first partially hybridises to the gene, has a mis-match where the ...
6
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1answer
2k views

Purpose of poly(A)+ RNA?

I am learning RNA-seq analysis. I always encounter this phase "poly(A)+ RNA". After searching, I got this: "Most messenger RNAs contain a poly(A) tail, while structural RNAs do not. Poly(A) selection ...
2
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0answers
85 views

Mouse meta-globin mRNA problem

This is an mRNA strand of mouse meta-globin: 5'-ccccagauacggaauucgaau-3' A) Which small RNA (below) is most likely to regulate expression of meta-globin? ...
10
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2answers
337 views

What is the highest competency possible for E coli?

I am looking to find a highly competent E coli strain. I am making a library of a ~6.6kb plasmid and I am not getting high enough efficiency. Does anyone have a suggestion of a strain/protocol with ...