3
votes
1answer
133 views

How are memories stored in the brain?

I've been thinking about this for a while and I can't figure out how a memory can be stored in the brain. I understand that important memories are favourably retained, such as a near death ...
4
votes
1answer
144 views

Tool use by animals: research history

I was under impression that data about quite a lot different species using different tools is a fairly modern phenomenon, i.e., all of the research is fairly recent. Around 50 years ago it was ...
3
votes
1answer
80 views

How can GMO contaminate biologic plants?

Let consider two use cases : I am the only farmer within a 200km radius. I first grow GMO plants. A few cycles later I decide to grow bio plants, so I uproot all of the GMO plants and plant fresh ...
4
votes
1answer
307 views

In the vacuum of space would death be instantaneous?

I was arguing with my colleague about this matter (I'm not going to mention which side I fall on). Would death be immediate in the vacuum of space? For example, if I was suddenly teleported into the ...
6
votes
1answer
273 views

What is the effect of garlic on intestinal flora?

Now that we can compare whole microbiomes, has there been investigations on the effect of garlic (or diallyl disulfide, its main ingredient) on intestinal flora? From the proven antimicrobial ...
4
votes
1answer
103 views

Does culling badgers restrict the spread of bovine tuberculosis?

The British government has announced that it plans a large-scale badger cull which they argue are implicated in the spread of Mycobacterium bovis - so-called bovine tuberculosis. Any cattle that ...
2
votes
1answer
82 views

How to build S16 rRNAs phylogenetic trees?

Here is what I know so far: Multiple copies are present in prokaryotes, but according to a paper by Lukjancenko el al.[1] it is enough to select the most similar ones. There are stem regions in the ...
6
votes
1answer
754 views

What is the life-span of the various organs in the human body?

It is possible for a person to donate the harvestable organs (kidneys, eyes, and such) posthumously. Let's assume for a moment that the technology exists to kill rejection, and maintain the organ in ...
3
votes
1answer
296 views

How are melatonin levels measured in humans?

I'm wondering how it is possible to measure diurnal variations of melatonin levels in humans. I keep reading that there should be a large difference in amplitude between melatonin levels measured at ...
6
votes
3answers
96 views

laboratory mice, nutrition, and humans

It seems that many nutrition experiments [directed at human diet] are carried on laboratory mice. Is there any justification that nutrition that is good or bad for laboratory mice will also be same ...
3
votes
2answers
897 views

Transcript(omics) terminology: cDNAs, ESTs, RNA-seq, etc

I've worked pretty frequently with genome and transcriptome data for several years now, but I'm still not 100% sure I understand the proper usage for certain terminology related to transcripts and ...
4
votes
1answer
49 views

Are there yearly variations in HIOMT (HydroxyIndole-O-MethylTransferase) availability?

I'm reading a booklet on melatonin published in 1996, titled "Melatonin and the Biological Clock". And see the following statement: HIOMT (HydroxyIndole-O-MethylTransferase), one of enzymes of ...
5
votes
3answers
237 views

Are some non-coding RNA spliced?

Are some non-coding RNA spliced like mRNA? I tried to find some information but I don't find anything...
4
votes
1answer
102 views

What light intensity determines the start/end of a photoperiod in humans?

I'm reading this article, which discusses the influence of Long Photoperiod (LP) and Short Photoperiod (SP) on melatonin production: HIOMT drives the photoperiodic changes in the amplitude of the ...
4
votes
1answer
171 views

What is the biological basis for the perception of time?

How is the "time axis" of memories encoded in the brain? I guess the time of the event could be "stored" with each event, but how is this translated into neurons etc.?
3
votes
0answers
51 views

Help with designing the analysis of radio telemetry study [closed]

I was wondering if there are any spatial ecologists out there who can provide some insight on the trouble I'm having with my Masters research. I am looking at the association a bat species to high ...
2
votes
1answer
48 views

Salvaging a plasmid from a cell culture stored at the incorrect temperature

I have E. coli with transformed plasmid on agar in a vial. It has been stored at -20 degree C without glycerol stock for 18 hours. This is a continuation of: Survival of E. coli on agar plate at -20 ...
9
votes
2answers
14k views

Why do vaccines cause your arm to hurt?

When you get a shot for a vaccine (for example, the annual flu vaccine), the nurse frequently indicates that your arm will ache for a day or two, maybe more. This ache is typically not just a pain ...
12
votes
3answers
158 views

How are long time periods measured in biological systems?

Biological systems are pretty good at measuring fairly long times, for example, menstrual cycles (month), or puberty (years). Counting days or years seems to be implausible, and chemical concentration ...
5
votes
2answers
400 views

Survival of E. coli on agar plate at -20 degree C without glycerol stock

If I kept E. coli transformed with plasmid at -20˚C without making glycerol stock, will it survive? Actually I have kept it this way for 18 hours. What will happen with it? Will it grow in fresh ...
5
votes
2answers
108 views

Creating a cell, not from another cell. Will it be possible?

If some time in the future, we can know exactly what a cell (for example simple prokaryote bacteria) contains, (I mean, exactly which molecules, the shape of them, the density of each, everything), ...
4
votes
1answer
565 views

Is there a relationship between Melatonin, Norepinephrine and depression in humans?

I'm reading a booklet on melatonin published in 1996, titled "Melatonin and the Biological Clock". This particular paragraph caught my attention and I would like to better understand what it means: ...
2
votes
0answers
207 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 ...
6
votes
3answers
168 views

What reasons allow for women to outlive men?

It is a well-known fact that women tend to outlive men. I often hear people unscientifically stating that men generally generally die younger because of the higher stress encountered in their work ...
8
votes
2answers
190 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 ...
8
votes
1answer
305 views

Does DNA contain information beyond protein synthesis?

It's well known that genetic information is stored in DNA. As far as I know, DNA only has information at the protein level. What about higher levels, such as organelles, cells, tissue, organs? Is ...
3
votes
2answers
173 views

Why is most tissue cellular?

Most tissue is comprised of cells. Why? It would seem inefficient to have so many individual nucleus, membranes, etc.? Specifically: Not all tissue is cellular. Much tissue is extracellular matrix. ...
7
votes
1answer
304 views

When giving blood, what is the specific Iron measurement they take?

I went to give blood the other day, and they take an "iron" measurement prior to actually drawing the blood. My level was 16.4 -- but what specific type of iron were they measuring? I've heard of ...
7
votes
1answer
68 views

How well does it actually work to surgically reroute the optical nerve?

Two publications, Roe et al, 1992[1] and Metin & Frost, 1989[2], describe results pertaining to the ability of a region of cortex to process information from a different sensory mode than the one ...
6
votes
1answer
293 views

Influence of alcohol on brain cells

As I am not related to biology, I would appreciate if you can keep your answers as simple as possible. My question is about the influence of alcohol on the brain. As far as I know, drinking alcohol ...
7
votes
1answer
226 views

What is this crow eating, and is it a common part of the corvid diet?

Here's a picture (by Rob Curtis) of a crow carrying and eating the corpse of what looks a bit like a small hawk or falcon: Other pictures clearly show the crow is eating the dead bird. This image ...
4
votes
1answer
139 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: ...
6
votes
2answers
577 views

Methods of nuclear transfection - nuclear transport

I am reading through the ENCODE papers, which is taking me well out of my comfort zone in terms of modern laboratory techniques. At the risk of asking a question which may well be thoroughly answered ...
7
votes
1answer
68 views

Which poison makes seastars inedible to possible predators?

In the new citizen science project (see: Sea Floor Explorer), numbers of seastars, scallops, crustaceans and other animals are counted. Already one can see a heavy bias in favor of seastars, both the ...
3
votes
2answers
93 views

Have proteins been observed to come into existence through mutations and natural selection?

What is an example of a functional protein that has been observed (in real time) to have come into existence through mutations and natural selection (not through an existing one being made defective). ...
4
votes
2answers
119 views

Ultrasound during pregnancy

In a hospital I can see a long queue of pregnant women waiting for their turn for ultrasound. Is it safe to go through the ultrasound during pregnancy, especially during last few weeks? Is ...
2
votes
1answer
97 views

Which cells will pass cancer to offspring?

Each of these types below contains a DNA mutation. Which type(s) will affect the children of the individual whose cell it is. Red blood cell T cell Skin (epithelial) cell Neuron from the brain Sperm ...
2
votes
1answer
63 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 ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

What determines testosterone exposure in womb, baby's genetics or mom's body?

I read this article which has the following quote: The ratio between index and ring finger is believed to be linked to exposure to the male hormone testosterone in the womb. And I wonder what ...
11
votes
1answer
1k views

Do fish break a water molecule to absorb oxygen?

How do fish separate oxygen from H20 & consume it? Do they break the water molecule and absorb the oxygen only?
1
vote
1answer
5k 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
209 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 ...
8
votes
1answer
812 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 ...
12
votes
2answers
201 views

Why do most breast cancers occur in women?

According to Korde et al. (2010): Male breast cancer accounts for less than 1% of all cancers in men and less than 1% of breast cancers. This raises the question: Why do most breast cancers ...
8
votes
1answer
579 views

How to prevent protein precipitation?

I'm trying to label a protein with fluorescent dye (TMR succinimidyl ester), but having trouble getting the protocol to work. The protein seems to be stable in distilled water at a the recommended ...
6
votes
1answer
246 views

Models of quorum sensing for multi-agent systems

Quorum sensing is a system of stimulus and responses correlated to population density that is used by bacteria to coordinate gene-expression. I am looking for a simple computational/mathematical model ...
2
votes
2answers
207 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?
7
votes
1answer
125 views

Pharmacologically, can tricyclic antidepressants have a side-effect profile similar to neuroleptics?

Torticollis (wryneck, cervical dystonia) is a neurologic movement disorder causing involuntary muscle spasms in the neck. Often, neuroleptics can cause such a side effect. I'm wondering if this ...
3
votes
2answers
74 views

Microbiome Data

How is it possible to access microbiome data like that found here? I'd like to perform analyses on similar type of data, but cannot find OTU data like that at the Human Biome Project. Thanks for any ...

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