Quote of the day: remembering a master modeler

“(…) all models are wrong, but some are useful.” George Box. From Arthur Lander‘s appreciation of the late Julian Lewis in BMC Biology (open access): “The highest goal of modeling is to be able to articulate all that is entailed by everything that is possible, and Julian’s gentleness afforded him the openness of mind to consider […]

The Monday Morning Smörgåsbord

There was an old lady that swallowed a fly… Cartherine Jopling writes at Elife on the Russian doll world of regulatory RNAs. Do we make non-coding RNAs to reduce deleterious effects of other non-coding RNAs? Turn your tumor into your diabetes. Jerome Groopman at the New Yorker investigates the possibilities of making cancer a chronic, […]

Scaling Renewables

John Matthews & Hao Tan pen a fascinating news article in today’s issue of Nature on renewable energy in China. The prevailing, and still correct, view of Chinese growth revolves around a giant black hole that sucks in all the Earth’s fossil fuels- and, unlike the astronomical singularity from which nothing escapes, spews out pollution […]

The Monday Morning Smörgåsbord

Ed Yong at Not Exactly Rocket Science on legumes, their symbionts, and adaptation going to 11: “Philippe Remigi and colleagues from the Laboratory of Plant-Microorganism Interactions in France have discovered how the microbes seal the deal. Their symbiosis packages also contain genes that trigger a temporary flurry of new mutations in a recipient’s genome. These […]

The Stuff Genes Are Made On

Oswald Avery and his collaborators, Colin MacLeod and Maclyn McCarty, published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine in 1944 the first evidence that genes were made of deoxyribonucleic acid- DNA. At the time, the remarkable finding went largely unnoticed. In some part this was due to the larger concerns of the times, World War II […]

Quote of the Day

“The model for higher education mimics supermarkets’ competition on the high street; the need for external funding pits one institution against another – and even one colleague against another, and young scholars waste their best energies writing grant proposals.” – Marina Warner, London Review of Books.

The Monday Morning Smörgåsbord

“‘We really don’t know where we are going with this,’ Yoshiki Sasai, the then director of the lab and Deputy Director of the CDB, told me. ‘We really are at the final frontier, facing an unknown world.’” Mo Costandi tells a tale of regenerative medicine in the age of stem cells in The Man Who […]