Are Your Bacteria Making You Fat? If you reach for that tasty piece of chocolate, even though you are trying to lose weight, are you doing it out of your own volition? Or are you actually being controlled by the bacteria in your gut? This is the question posed in BioEssays by Dr Carlo Maley of the University of California San Francisco. “Bacteria within the gut are manipulative,” said Marley. “There is a diversity of interests represented in the microbiome, some aligned with our own dietary goals and others not.”
What Will Bioengineered Plants Be Like In The Future? "No biological principle exists forbidding the same plant from reproducing by both spores and seeds" It is called "exaptation". The spore formation is superseded by seed formation, and becomes a part of a more complicated process. Once it does, the mechanics required to form a spore are no longer available as a "standalone feature".
Bioluminscent trees could light up our streets "When a jellyfish is deep, deep underwater it creates its own light," Roosegaarde tells Dezeen. "It does not have a battery or a solar panel or an energy bill. It does it completely autonomously. Biologists Have Built An Artificial Chromosome From Scratch The new chromosome, called SynIII, involved the design and creation of 273,871 base pairs of DNA — fewer than the 316,667 pairs in the original chromosome. That's over 50,000 modifications! Nit pick: Over 50,000 fewer base pairs does not mean 50,000 modifications, they're considering each base pair on a case-by-case basis, they look at what each segment is (a gene that codes for a certain protein, etc) and then remove it as a segment, that sounds more like maybe 100 modifications, each on average about 500 base pairs being removed. I am curious if this means we've got the basic means to construct something like Smallpox from scratch. :O Considering it is designed to take over the cell it is in and make copies (admittedly with the help of proteins) it seems like a reasonable concern.
How will technology impact the future of health and medicine? Navigation Watch a Brief Day Three Recap More Videos from 2014 Participant Testimonials This Microbe's Hair is Actually a Nanowire for Powering Itself When researchers first looked at the long tendrils grown by “electric bacteria” called Shewanella, they thought it was just common bacterial hair (or pili) for sensing surfaces and connecting to other bacteria. Now, an examination of their structure reveals that they’re actually nanowires that can conduct electricity. The work was published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences this week. The One Scientific Field Most Likely to Get Humanity Into Space '2312', by KS Robinson, is the first, best example of the ways in which speculative fiction serves to imagine first, a solar ecology - replete with diverse microecologies - through terraforming. In fact, Terraforming and remedial Terraforming might be the most appropriate name for your speculative, synergistic, scientific field. In my view. It also can be instrumental in shifting humanity's sense of time from immediate gratification, to an intermediate, historical sense of future achievement - the timeframes necessary for moving into the cosmos - even at the local scale - will need to be attenuated and adjusted accordingly on a social-psychological scale.
5 Diseases You Should Be More Afraid Of Than Ebola The current outbreak of Ebola virus disease (EVD) in West Africa is the largest in history, and has already killed over 1200 people. Those living in more developed areas have become fairly sheltered from the devastating effects of widespread infectious disease over the last 60 years or so, due to widespread availability of vaccines, competent healthcare, and education about hygiene’s role in disease transmission. Ebola is particularly unlikely to cause a pandemic in the developed world, as the method of transmission requires close contact with infected people. However, that doesn’t mean that it’s completely impossible for diseases to become widespread in more developed areas. Check out these 5 diseases that could easily cause a global health emergency: Influenza
Grand Challenges in Synthetic Biology to be Accomplished When engineering science meets biological science, synthetic biology is created. Over the past half century, systems engineering has seen numerous successful applications in the engineering field such as manufacturing, electronics, telecommunications, computer, and networks, etc. At the same time, biological systems have been dealt in a reductionist way which resulted in accumulation of numerous but relatively fragmented biological information on genes and proteins, and their interactions. Human enhancement An electrically powered exoskeleton suit in development as of 2010 by Tsukuba University of Japan. Human enhancement is "any attempt to temporarily or permanently overcome the current limitations of the human body through natural or artificial means. It is the use of technological means to select or alter human characteristics and capacities, whether or not the alteration results in characteristics and capacities that lie beyond the existing human range."  Technologies