Monday, December 03, 2007

Welcome to Gene Genie!

Welcome to the 21st edition of gene genie! In this edition we cover everything from selection constraints on the evolution of the vulva in nematodes, to the importance of the insertion site in transgenic and the history of microarrays...


Greg Laden presents The Nematode Vulva and the Nature of Evolution. Greg explains how the vulva can be used as a model in comparative genetics to determine whether evolution is primarily governed by selection and/or selection-independent constraints, not stochastic processes such as drift in unconstrained phenotypic space. He concludes that evolution is more deterministic than stochastic.

96well presents Where do you express your transgene? posted at This post does a good job of explaining one of the biggest problems with transgenics, namely how poorly we understand integration. The transgene can integrate in any place in the genome and be subject to tissue-specific chromatin remodeling which may render results uninterpretable. One way around this is to target insertion near the beta-actin gene as the author explains: "Recently, the lab of Bernd Kinzel (Novartis), published a technology report in Genesis (vol.45), in which the locus of beta-actin was identified as a good dock for gene expression. Beta-actin is a cytoskeletal building-block expressed in almost every mammalian cell, and it is necessary for life, so only heterozygous transgenic can be developed."


FitBuff presents What Is Healthy? posted at's Total Mind and Body Fitness Blog. FitBuff is asking the question "What is healthy"? At first, this may seem like an easy question to answer. However, when you actually stop and think about it, it's not easy at all... here is what he thinks: "In my opinion, healthy is following a positive lifestyle; one that is manageable, as stress-free as possible, involves the eating of several small meals throughout the day (including lean protein, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats), incorporates a workout program that is realistic and consistent, and always ends with a good night's sleep."


AJ Cann presents DNA Microarrays posted at MicrobiologyBytes. AJ gives us a good primer on how microarrays work along with some educational videos.

That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of gene genie
using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.


Joe Dunckley said...

The Carnival submission form is broken -- I tried submitting something on Saturday, and it came back with the somewhat surreal accusation that my site could not be found.

Ben Ferguson said...

Great job, AC. Lots o' good stuff.