Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Breaking Report: Making dsRNA Vectors

Making dsRNA constructs in vectors? Hauge and colleagues report a one-tube, ligation-independent cloning method. If you're making your own constructs for in vitro or in vivo work, might be worth taking a look at their strategy.

Hauge et al. (2009) Single tube, high throughput cloning of inverted repeat constructs for double-stranded RNA expression. PLoS One. 4(9):e7205.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Breaking Report: Transmembrane Proteins in Embryogenesis

What's on my desk to read today? Zuniga et al. (2009) Genes encoding novel secreted and transmembrane proteins are temporally and spatially regulated during Drosophila melanogaster embryogenesis. BMC Bio. 7(1):61. Why? Pretty pictures! And interesting science.

Friday, September 25, 2009

DRSC Website

We are updating the DRSC website. Please contact us if you have problems accessing the website or the database on or after Mon. Sept. 28th. Thank you.

Quote of the Week

Does there not exist a high ridge where the mountainside of “scientific” knowledge joins the opposite slope of “artistic” imagination?
Vladimir Nabokov (writer and lepidopterist)

Thursday, September 24, 2009

New on the DRSC Bookshelf

Two new things on the DRSC bookshelves these days. One practical. One just for fun.

(1) The Practical -- we have compiled a set of protocol & methods papers from the DRSC and other groups and organized them into a three-ring binder, so that people can take a look through and quickly find relevant protocols for cell culture, assays, transfection and so on. We have a digital folder of the PDFs as well.

(2) The Fun -- on my office bookshelf is a copy of the 2009 release Pictorial Webster's: A Visual Dictionary of Curiosities by John M. Carrera (Chronicle Books, San Francisco, CA, USA). Carrera compiled the images largely from 19th century dictionaries. The result is a quirky and interesting compendium of small engravings, many with the same kind of look I am used to from seeing (and appreciating) engraved and hand-drawn figures in older science texts and journals.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Long Life

What I'm reading today? On aging and flies:

Copeland et al. (2009) Extension of Drosophila life span by RNAi of the mitochondrial respiratory chain. Current Biology. 19, 1-8.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Preview: Home

We're planning to update the DRSC home page so it functions more as a "table of contents" and less like text to read. Screenshot of the revised shown here. Feedback welcome. I expect the change will launch before the end of the month.

Hey, Buddy!

What I'm reading today?

A report from Drinnenberg et al. in which they describe introducting RNAi-related genes from other yeast species into the budding yeast S. cerevisiae, successfully making RNAi work in that species.

Drinnenberg et al (2009). RNAi in Budding Yeast. Science (Sept. e-pub ahead of print). PubMed ID: 19745116

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Silkworm RNAi

What's on my desk today? A report from Fujita et al. (2009) describing a vector-based approach to RNAi knockdown in a cell line from the silkworm Bombyx mori.

Fujita et al. (2009) DNA Vector-Based RNA Interference in Cell Lines Derived from Bombyx mori. Biosci. Biotechnol. Biochem. Pubmed ID 19734648.


In the works at the DRSC--a change to our home page. Stay tuned. And suggestions welcome.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Quote of the Week: Ready or Not

There is a widespread view that scientific discoveries are more or less inevitable, and that it makes little difference whether or not a particular individual makes a discovery at a given time: if the time is not ripe for it, it will not be understood and will have little or no effect on future events; if the time is ripe, then someone else will soon make the discovery anyhow.
The history of Mendelism is one of the often-cited examples here. According to this interpretation, Mendel's paper was not understood in 1866 because the time was not ripe ... To me, this account seems greatly oversimplified--though it must be admitted that the development of the subject would probably have been much the same, even to the dates, if Mendel's paper had never been written.
It it true that the paper was ahead of its time, but it was not difficult to understand, and it seems unlikely that it would have remained unappreciated for so long if it had appeared in a less obscure journal, or if Mendel himself had published the further cases that he reported to his letters to Nageli.

A History of Genetics (1965) by A.H. Sturtevant, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

To the Rescue!

What's on my desk today? A report co-authored by the DRSC's own Matt Booker,

Kondo et al. (2009) Cross-species RNAi Rescue Platform in Drosophila melanogaster. Genetics. PMID: 1972085

An accompanying web tool and resources are available through the DRSC.