Posts Tagged ‘biotechnologist’

New discovery may save endangered animals from extinction

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 09-05-2011

Drill primate; Photo credit: San Diego Zoo

Starting with normal skin cells, scientists from The Scripps Research Institute have produced the first stem cells from endangered species. Such cells could eventually make it possible to improve reproduction and genetic diversity for some species, possibly saving them from extinction, or to bolster the health of endangered animals in captivity.

A description of the accomplishment appeared in an advance online edition of the journal Nature Methods on September 4, 2011.

For more information click here.

New rules affect over 40,000 science researchers

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 08-25-2011

This past week the NIH announced that it was tightening its rules on financial conflict of interest for researchers receiving funding from drug and medical device companies. The new rules include the following revised regulations:

  • Require investigators to disclose to their institutions all of their significant financial interests related to their institutional responsibilities.
  • Lower the monetary threshold at which significant financial interests require disclosure, generally from $10,000 to $5,000.
  • Require institutions to report to the PHS awarding component additional information on identified financial conflicts of interest and how they are being managed.
  • Require institutions to make certain information accessible to the public concerning identified SFIs held by senior/key personnel.
  • Require investigators to complete training related to the regulations and their institution’s financial conflict of interest policy.

According to the Washington Post, there are over 40,000 scientists who currently receive more than $5,000 in annual funding from the drug and medical device industries.

Despite the NIH’s move towards increasing financial transparency, not all watchdog groups are happy with the measure.

To read more on this story see the Washington Post article and the associated press release from the NIH.

There is still hope for stem cell research

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 08-07-2011

Stem cell scientists, do not despair! Despite concerns over iPSC-derived teratomas and altered genomic and epigenomic states, researchers at UC Davis have written a roadmap for finding solutions to the problems identified with iPSCs which has been published last week in the journal Cell.

According to Paul S. Knoepfler, UC Davis associate professor of cell biology and human anatomy:

iPSCs offer the potential to treat many diseases as an alternative or adjuvant therapy to drugs or surgery. Problems that have been identified with their use likely can be overcome, allowing iPSCs to jump from the laboratory dish to patients who could benefit from them.

To read more click here.

Try Nerdy blog show scientist have a sense of humor

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 07-28-2011

In these lazy summer days I find myself spending more time looking for and reading interesting/humorous blog posts by fellow scientists. My latest find is a blog by American PhD candidate “Try Nerdy” (TN). Although I don’t know his/her real name, (it is not listed in the TN about page), I do know that TN is a molecular biologist who helps distill complicated scientific material into easily digestible bits for his/her non-scientist readership. TN also has a great sense of humor and publishes some captivating stuff including TN’s latest post “The Inside Jokes of Scientists.”

If you were ever curious as to how crazy sounding proteins such as R2D2 and C3PO got their names, check out TN’s blog.

I am a scientist and despite TN’s claim that Try Nerdy is not focused on scientists I will continue to follow. Keep up the good work TN!

Your opportunity to influence NIH funding

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 07-27-2011

Rarely do scientists get an opportunity to influence the funding direction of the largest granting agency in the United States, the National Institute of Health. Yet that is exactly what we are being asked to do in the NIH’s latest request for information.

The NIH is requesting that the scientific community send in its ideas on how best to support or accelerate neuroscience research. Responses should address:

  1. areas of neuroscience research that could be accelerated by the development of specific research resources or tools
  2. major opportunities for, and impediments to, advancing neuroscience research
  3. the 2-3 highest priority tools or resources needed to capitalize on the scientific opportunities and overcome obstacles to progress in neuroscience research
  4. how NIH Blueprint might best facilitate the development of these tools/resources

Your answers could influence where neuroscience funding is directed over the next couple of years so be sure to checkout the NIH website to add your two cents!