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Archive for the ‘cool tools’ Category

The Future of Medicine

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 11-21-2012

Besides demonstrating a really cool tool, this video has the best quote of the day:

You don’t want to hear “oops” in real surgery, but fortunately our digital man has undo

Pathway Curation and Real-Time PCR Panel Design Strategy

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 11-20-2012

Pathway analysis provides an efficient and focused approach for studying a large number of related gene targets in a single experiment. The pathway curation and ranking strategy employed by Thomson Reuters and Bio-Rad ensures that the gene assays present on each real-time PCR pathway and collection panel are the most relevant for gene expression profiling based on differential expression studies and the frequency with which gene targets appear in the peer-reviewed literature. All PrimePCR assays were designed following strict guidelines on maximum transcript coverage, have minimal overlap with known single nucleotide polymorphisms, and span large introns where possible. In addition, they have all been fully validated in the lab, passing stringent quality controls. As a result, PrimePCR panels set a new quality standard for commercially available predesigned qPCR pathway panels.

Click here to read the full article in Bioradiations.

Click on the pathway map below to view a larger version.

Apoptosis and survival — TNF-R1 signaling pathway map. This pathway map is one example of the 260 canonical pathway maps provided by Thomson Reuters. Pathway maps illustrate protein interactions and regulation to provide a comprehensive picture of signaling and disease processes. On the Bio-Rad website, each target on the map can be selected to view corresponding gene and protein information.

Museum of your mind

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 09-27-2012

The Mind exhibit is one of the coolest science exhibits found in any science museum. What makes it so cool? Well, for one thing, in Mind, you are the exhibit! Located at the Exploratorium in San Francisco’s Marina District, Mind is a permanent museum collection with over forty exhibits that create provocative and compelling experiences that illuminate how the mind works. Some of their coolest activities include:

  • an activity to analyze the changes in your facial expression in a moment of extreme surprise
  • an exhibit that forces participants to communicate with body language rather than facial expressions
  • my favorite experiment (which can be played online) that challenges you to explore the limits of your mind’s attention capacity

Checkout the exhibit (and online games) at and let us know what you think.

Video: Diving Through the Human Brain

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 09-11-2012

Check out this video of thousands of serial sections of the brain stitched together. Courtesy of Brain Maps.

ENCODE Explained

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 09-06-2012

There has been of ton of excitement around data recently published from the ENCODE Project. The project assigned biochemical function to 80% of the genome, including areas that were previously thought to be “junk” DNA. If you are curious as to what all the excitement is about, be sure to watch the video below.