Duration of incubation of agar plates for viable cell count

Viable cell count is a common technique for assessing the relative number of viable cells in a culture that could be coaxed to grow on agar plates after serial dilution using a suitable diluent such as phosphate buffer. In essence, viable cell count asks the question: what are the numbers of viable cells in a … More Duration of incubation of agar plates for viable cell count

How to confirm that a microbe could grow in minimal salts medium?

Growth in a minimal salts medium signifies that a microbe has a competitive advantage over other microbial species for nutrients and, more importantly, environmental habitats. But, how should one confirm that a microbe could grow in minimal salts medium? Specifically, should the inoculum contain any trace of a rich medium? The answer to the latter … More How to confirm that a microbe could grow in minimal salts medium?

Field deployable DNA sequencers

Since its inception in the 1990s, multiple revolutions have occurred in the field of DNA sequencing, where successive iterations of the technology enabled more reliable and less error prone sequencing of increasingly larger segments of DNA from a variety of sources such as human, bacteria, fungi, viruses etc. Indeed, DNA sequencing technology has revolutionized biology … More Field deployable DNA sequencers

Utility of co-expression analysis

In biology, researchers often seek to understand the factors that underpin a particular cellular process or diseased state. Thus, this line of thinking necessarily result in experiment design that seek to correlate molecular events with cellular processes, which could be readout experimentally, either through microscopy techniques or enzymatic biochemical assays. More generally, co-expression analysis is … More Utility of co-expression analysis

Single cell transcriptomics for revealing the compendium of different cell fates and cellular differentiation

Genomics is commonly thought to be the method for understanding the functional repertoire of cells, which, by extension, would reveal the different cell types, fates, lineages and cellular differentiation available to a consortium of cells within a locale such as the human body.   However, many of the genes encoded within the genome of a … More Single cell transcriptomics for revealing the compendium of different cell fates and cellular differentiation

Bacterial immune system utilized for genome editing

Feature article in Nature, Vol. 541, Issue 7637, pp. 280-282, “CRISPR’s Mysteries”   Summary of article: Used by bacterial and archaeal species for immune surveillance and defence of the cell against viruses, the single cell organism’s immune system, clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) system has increasingly find use in alternate scenarios, the most … More Bacterial immune system utilized for genome editing

Smartphones as instruments for science

Feature article in Nature, Vol. 545, Issue 7652, pp. 119-121, 04 May 2017, “Pocket laboratories”   Summary of article: Since its introduction in 2007, smartphones have achieved a level of penetration in the consumer market, both in developing countries and developed economies, that it is almost ubiquitous in life. Buttressed by the multi-function and customization … More Smartphones as instruments for science

Microfluidics in biomedical science technology feature

Technology feature in Nature, Vol. 545, 25 May 2017, pp.511-514, “The making of a medical microchip”   Summary of article: A good overview of the use of microfluidics technology in medical diagnosis and point of care detection of etiological agents. Specifically, polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) based microfluidics technology was featured and its use in many areas of … More Microfluidics in biomedical science technology feature

The arduous process of drug discovery and development

Drug development is a continuous process. Specifically, there will always be drugs in preclinical development and more advanced ones in clinical trials. These medicines are typically exorbitant in cost due to a variety of reasons, the most important of which is their small production volume coupled with the need to recoup the hefty investment needed … More The arduous process of drug discovery and development