4
votes
1answer
115 views

How does sex differentiation work in Paracerceis sculpta, the sexually tetramorphic isopod?

Paracerceis sculpta is a marine isopod species known for its unusual reproductive strategy: female: medium-sized; lives in harems run by an α male α male: large; keeps a harem of females β male: ...
2
votes
0answers
196 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 ...
3
votes
2answers
89 views

What are the different, high-level programs along which a eukaryotic animal cell can follow?

What are the different, high-level, disjunct (mutually exclusive at one particular point in time) programs or pathways along which a eukaryotic animal cell can follow? Examples of programs would ...
7
votes
2answers
518 views

How does Iota-Carrageenan achieve an antiviral effect?

"Cold Defence" nasal sprays are recommended to be taken either preventatively or in the early stages of a cold. The active ingredient in these sprays is Carrageenan. After some research, the active ...
8
votes
1answer
712 views

Digital Genomic Footprinting for ENCODE

I'm reading over the ENCODE Nature papers, and one of the papers referred to is "Global mapping of protein-DNA interactions in vivo by digital" by Hesselberth et al[1]. Genomic footprinting is a ...
8
votes
1answer
381 views

Why are we using upper teeth and lower lip on labiodental sounds?

I came to wonder this when studying language (as well as other same theme question posted just few ago). For example the word "fantastic" we use upper teeth and lower lip to produce F sound, instead ...
3
votes
0answers
107 views

How does a plant decide when to grow a branch? [duplicate]

As a plant grows, at some point the first branch forms. As it continues, branches grow new branches, and so on, in a seemingly random way. Is it random, or is it driven by the environment (heat or ...
4
votes
2answers
373 views

Under what circumstances will a human neuron divide?

I read somewhere that a mature neuron loses its ability to divide, except for very specific situations. I was unable to find the description of those situations. What are they? (I'm sorry I'm not ...
1
vote
1answer
4k views

Which enzyme catalyzes transcription and which translation?

My attempt: Transcription - RNA polymerase Translation - aminoacyl tRNA synthetase I know that the ribosome almost runs translation, but I don't think ribosomes are enzymes, which is why I went ...
8
votes
3answers
305 views

Long-term-potentiation and memory. Where do we stand?

I was reading the answers to the question: How and where, in the human brain, are memories stored? and, as expected, LTP and LTD came out. Every time I read about LTP/LTD there is always something ...
7
votes
1answer
740 views

How to clone and sequence a gene transcript of unknown sequence?

How might I go about amplifying a gene transcript (mRNA) from animal tissue of which little is known about the genome? In some applications, I have used reverse transcriptase PCR to amplify all mRNA ...
8
votes
2answers
158 views

Are prions an important driver in evolution?

I understand that prions have been implicated in the passing on of epigentic information[1]. Are prions thought to play a significant role in the evolution of organisms? Alberti S, Halfmann R, King ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

How does the stem-loop cause intrinsic transcription termination?

In this animation, towards the end (about three quarters) the process of transcription termination is shown. It states that the transcribed RNA forms a hairpin loop (or stem-loop), which halts the ...
11
votes
3answers
489 views

Is Behe's experiment (evolving the bacterial flagellum) plausible in the lab?

[Warning: this question is motivated by a prominent proponent of "intelligent design": Prof. Michael Behe. I'm not interested in debating creationism.] According to Wikipedia[1]: In Darwin’s ...
8
votes
3answers
453 views

What triggers meiosis in gonadal cells?

What specific biochemical processes are involved in inducing meiosis rather than mitosis? Why are gonadal cells the only cells in the human body which do undergo meiosis?
11
votes
1answer
438 views

How do CpG islands remain unmethylated?

In most of the genome CpG sites are pretty much always methylated, but CpG islands are instead often unmethylated. This has been linked to the fact that they often are associated to transcripted ...
10
votes
2answers
363 views

Could an “overactive” brain increase the chances of Alzheimer's Disease?

From Raichle ME. 2010. Two views of brain function. Trends in cognitive sciences 14: 180–90: Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common cause of progressive cognitive decline and dementia in ...
16
votes
2answers
344 views

Why would diffusion be faster across a non-specialised tissue?

The standard protocol for a person experiencing chest pains is to chew a 300mg aspirin tablet, the argument being that chewing rather than swallowing the tablet results in the aspirin entering the ...
7
votes
2answers
437 views

How can I measure bacterial alkaline phosphatase activity?

I want to measure alkaline phosphatase activity using PNPP in my mutant bacteria strains, but all the protocols I found involve purification of the phosphatase (which I have no need of). Does anyone ...
23
votes
4answers
481 views

How are the boundaries of a gene determined?

What statistical processes and methods are used by geneticists/molecular biologists to know where one gene starts and one ends?
5
votes
1answer
3k views

How do SDS-PAGE gels differ in a Bis-Tris system vs. a Tris-Glycine system?

Protein migrate differently in Bis-Tris and Tris-Glycine gels. I was curious about the actual reasons why. Do certain gel systems result in a tighter resolution than others?
12
votes
4answers
204 views

Are there any examples of proteins with no or minimal sequence identity, but highly similar structure?

What are they, and do they share a common ancestor? How far back in evolutionary time must we go to find them? If none are known, what computational tools might be used to search for such examples?
15
votes
3answers
335 views

Is exon order always preserved in splicing?

Are there any cases in which the splicing machinery constructs an mRNA in which the exons are not in the 5' -> 3' genomic order? I'm interested any such cases, whether they involve constitutive or ...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

variation in expression accounted for a SNP — what's a usual percent?

I am reading a GWAS paper that found a SNP associated to predisposition to colon cancer and was assessed for gene expression of the nearby gene. They found that the genotype accounted for 55% of the ...
9
votes
1answer
124 views

Is there a biophysical causation from local field potential (LFP) to spikes?

Many experiments showed that neurons tend to fire at some phase (usually trough) of local field potential (LFP) oscillations, such as theta or gamma rhythm. LFP is supposedly generated by a population ...
30
votes
4answers
671 views

How does the sensitive plant detect vibrations?

The sensitive plant (Mimosa pudica) is a remarkable little plant whose characteristic feature is its ability to droop its leaves when disturbed: Apparently, this ability to droop rests on the cells ...
5
votes
1answer
202 views

How are DNA polymerase error rates measured?

It is well known that the first DNA polymerase, Taq, is quite error prone. Newer generation commercial enzymes that have either been isolated from different thermophile species or have been improved ...
5
votes
1answer
78 views

Why would we overexpress Sir2 by overexpressing its hypomorph (dSir2-EP2300) in C. elegans?

Can't we just overexpress regular Sir2 in the paper? Rather than overexpress a reduced-function gene? The paper is Burnett C, Valentini S, Cabreiro F, Goss M, Somogyvári M, Piper MD, Hoddinott M, ...
5
votes
2answers
85 views

Why do glial cells of the retina become more abundant the closer they are to the optic nerve?

I am doing a project on expression of GFAP in the zebrafish retina. GFAP is a marker for glial cells. I have found that the glial cells are more abundant the closer they are to the optic nerve at the ...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

Age-associated neurodegenerative diseases

Age-associated neurodegenerative diseases encompass Alzheimer's Disease and Parkinson's Disease. What other neurodegenerative diseases could be described as age-associated? Multiple Sclerosis? Brain ...
4
votes
2answers
128 views

Does age affect the frequency of flatus?

Is there any relation between age and the frequency of flatus? I often have this feeling that older people f*** more often than younger ones. Is this feeling scientifically correct?
8
votes
1answer
98 views

Why is propanoic acid often added to the diet of C. elegans?

And what are its effects on C. elegans? The paper is Burnett C, Valentini S, Cabreiro F, Goss M, Somogyvári M, Piper MD, Hoddinott M, Sutphin GL, Leko V, McElwee JJ, et al.. 2011. Absence of effects ...
15
votes
3answers
253 views

Defining paper(s) in epigenetics

For someone who is interested in learning about the discovery of epigenetics, which are the foundational defining papers in the area?
2
votes
3answers
80 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 ...
12
votes
2answers
351 views

What kind of fruit is this?

Just spotted this fruit while walking to school. It's the size of a small coin.The taste is almost sour and tangy and somewhat sweet (I only tried one of them and very little of it). I admit, ...
2
votes
2answers
204 views

Is consuming sugar with food as beneficial as consuming glucose (~half of the amount of sugar)?

A few years back I heard at biology class that sugar's molecule consists of half the number of elements of a glucose molecule. So not counting the energy needed to transform two sugar molecules in one ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

Why are some berries poisonous?

In my understanding, the evolutional function of berries is to be eaten and pood out somewhere else, so that the seeds of the plant spread. Is this so? Then why are some berries poisonous?
5
votes
1answer
122 views

Phenotypic Variation of cattle - looking for academic sources

Can someone please point me in the direction of a good academic article on the following: What are possible sources of phenotypic variation of different 400 day weights of cattle? Furthermore how ...
3
votes
1answer
167 views

What is the relationship between Homocysteine and Norepinephrine metabolic cycles?

I've been researching neuromodulators and have taken a look at the Norepinephrine/Noradrenaline system. The diagram of biosynthesis of Norepinephrine is presented in the wikipedia article: ...
12
votes
2answers
3k views

Do men have significant hormonal cycles?

I know there's a similar question here. But that discussion dissolved into lunar cycle and a correlation with it. I want to find more towards the original question of is there a periodic hormone ...
4
votes
3answers
139 views

Robotic surgery for treating cancer?

We can localise cancer cells in the body. We can manufacture materials thin and hard enough to penetrate the body without harming it. So what stops us from creating an automated surgery where the ...
2
votes
1answer
183 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
12
votes
2answers
187 views

Can a color-deficient person be made to visualize the missing colors?

Hope this is within the scope of this site. Color-deficient persons lack the cells in their retina needed for differentiating some (or all) colors. However, the part of the brain that actually ...
5
votes
1answer
63 views

on/off behavior of neural networks

What causes a group of disembodied neurons in a dish to fire after a silence? If there are no neurons providing a stimulus for more firing (as in a dish of disembodied rat neurons), then why don't ...
0
votes
1answer
417 views

Is breathing in deodorant fumes dangerous for my brain?

I noticed that I sometimes get dizzy when I accidentaly breathe in too much Axe. Also, I find the smell of alchohol rich deodorants quite unpleasant. But, I was wondering, is it actually dangerous? ...
5
votes
1answer
115 views

Mutation-immunity in Luria-Delbruck experiment

If experiments like those of Luria and Delbruck on E. coli and T1 phage are the main source of our confidence in the mutation-immunity model, is it then highly unlikely that there are other types of ...
8
votes
1answer
272 views

Foveal ganglion cell density (Tay-Sachs Disease)

I’m currently reading on Tay-Sachs disease and have stumbled upon something regarding the typical “cherry red” macula symptom. On the one hand it is mentioned that the macula is almost devoid of ...
3
votes
0answers
94 views

Terminology question: the scope of an allele in an organism

Let us consider a gene FOO with novel type foo. If I were discussing an organism that has inherited foo in every cell during classical zygote formation, then I would ordinarily just say that the ...
0
votes
1answer
201 views

From which ancestor species did humans inherit orgasm?

From what ancestors did humans inherit orgasm? Do fish experience orgasm? Are the male and female orgasm the homologues that can be traced to the time when there was no difference in sex between ...
5
votes
1answer
305 views

What are good practices with reusing desalting columns

At least according to a few sources Prozyme and Protocols-Online, it is possible to reuse desalting columns and since I'm cheap I would like to also. Key things seem to be washing with several column ...

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