Showing posts from January, 2016

RotM: Interview with Prof. Steve Winder

For our recent Researcher of the Month, we spoke to Professor Steve Winder, Professor of Molecular Cell Biology , at the Department of Biomedical Science , The University of Sheffield . His laboratory focuses on the study of dystroglycan , a protein that plays an important role in cell adhesion and signalling. His recent paper in Human Molecular Genetics speaks about the a FDA approved drug, currently being used for treating leukemia as a treatment for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). Here is Professor Win der telling us more about his lab's findings and how we might cure DMD in the near future.  CTS : For the benefit of our readers, could you please tell us more about your  findings in the recent study.  SW: Identification of a systemically acting and universal small molecule therapy for   Duchenne muscular dystrophy would be an enormous advance for this condition. Based on evidence gained from studies on mouse genetic models, we have identified tyrosine phosp

Genes don't call all the shots, your environment does to.

The usage of the terms such as ' DNA ' and ' genes ' has exploded in recent years and is  commonly used to denote characteristics and traits in people, features of products and even as lyrics for a song . The theory of genetics that genes assign traits to individuals has been rooted so deeply into our psyche, that we fail to see the other side of the story completely. The role of the environment in shaping how our genes function is a fact that is unheard by many people and is something I would like to shed a little light on in this post. The public understanding about genetics is more or less like the way people follow astrology . If the newspaper predicts that the day at work will not go well, we tend to blame the stars/ sun sign for everything that goes wrong that day. Similarly, the presumption that genes control the way we function and act, has set the tone for genes to be solely in control of everything that is happening inside our cells. However, this i

Why do Pets like to play?

Isn't it strange where cats and kittens will find to sleep and play? (Photo credit: Wikipedia ) I have cats at home, I love cats, and am a self proclaimed animal activist, who loves her quadruped counterpart than watching humans play. But the idea of play I have come to believe is not universal. When I do catch a trail of ants , or the occasional team of ants scouting the place for left over cat food, I can’t help but think that they are probably having a fun time looking around, and contrary to popular scientific belief, I do think they kinda like to waste time goofing around, when the food is right there in front of them. But then again, that is my opinion, which has no scientific evidence, and need not be taken seriously. So, if you have cats at home or are fortunate enough to have seen cats playing you would see that it greatly resembles their hunting behaviour. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that play hones the kittens hunting skills so that they grow up to bec

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