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What happens when a group of streptococci stick to cells in your throat and start to make toxins? Your body fights back by making clones. The animated video, Fighting Infection by Clonal Selection, from Etsuko Uno and Drew Berry is so good that if I didn’t know better, I would almost think it’s really capturing…

Okay, watching some of the other movies makes me realize that I’ve been very negligent in not uploading ours. Without further ado, here it is.

David Ng from The World’s Fair has made this wonderful video on public speaking. Or shall we say the funnier side of public speaking? I really enjoyed it! I’d say Dave’s video ranks right up there with one of my other favories, the classic: “Chicken chicken chicken”

The Periodic Table of Videos from the University of Nottingham has 118 short YouTube clips about the elements. Wired Campus recommended the Sodium clip (below). I liked it, too. It’s not quite as funny as Mentos in Diet Coke, and but it’s still cute and the narrator has a haircut like Gene Wilder in Young…

Students, teachers and scientists converge tommorrow morning from all around the Puget Sound region and elsewhere in Washington to share their experiences and talk about science. The students will present posters, science-themed music, art, drama, and many different types of projects that involved first-hand research and investigation. Scientists from the local biotech companies and research…

Over 2600 genetic diseases have been found where a change in a single gene is linked to the disease. One of the questions we might ask is how those mutations change the shape and possibly the function of a protein? If the structures of the mutant and wild type (normal) proteins have been solved, NCBI…

In the class that I’m teaching, we found that several PCR products, amplified from the 16S ribosomal RNA genes from bacterial isolates, contain a mixed base in one or more positions. We picked samples where the mixed bases were located in high quality regions of the sequence (Q >40), and determined that the mixed bases…

Meet the ribosomes

Ribosomes are molecular machines that build new proteins. This process of synthesizing a protein is also known as translation. Many antibiotics prevent translation by binding to ribosomal RNA. In the class that I’m teaching, we’re going to be looking at ribosome structures to see if the polymorphisms that we find in the sequences of 16S…

I made this video (below the fold) to illustrate the steps involved in making a phylogenetic tree. The basic steps are to: Build a data set Align the sequences Make a tree In the class that I’m teaching, we’re making these trees in order to compare sequences from our metagenomics experiment with the multiple copies…

How to use Cn3D

Have you ever wondered how to view and annotate molecular structures? At least digital versions? It’s surprisingly easy and lots of fun. Here’s a movie I made that demonstrates how you can use Cn3D, a free structure-viewing program from the NCBI. Luckily, Cn3D behaves almost the same way on both Windows and Mac OS X.…