Category Archives: Genes

Manifest Destiny in the New Frontier

Americans have always been a curious lot.  We have felt this desire to “boldly go where no man has gone before” from the time of the late 19th century when the idea of “Manifest Destiny” was coined, an idea reflecting our belief that we were destined to explore and colonize the new realm of the wild west, to […] Continue reading

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. . . Goes It So And

“It will only be a little pinch.” Doctors always say that. I think they say it more for themselves than for the patient. A little asterisk to fluff their conscious. They hurt you, but they tell themselves it is to help you. They hurt you, but it only hurts a little bit. You tell me […] Continue reading

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What Makes You Stronger Could Also Kill You

DNA methylation was one of those wondrous discoveries that has completely changed the way we think about evolution and genetics. Essentially, certain characteristics and traits may or may not be expressed due to the attachment of methyl groups to DNA molecules. This process however, doesn’t take thousands of years, but can occur in a single […] Continue reading

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Just how close are we to building an airplane?

Now that we have the entire human genome sequenced, were only a few short experiments away from curing genetic diseases like Cystic Fibrosis and Tay-Sachs … right? With all the hype surrounding the Human Genome Project and its completion at the turn of the century, we must not lose sight of what this incredible accomplishment […] Continue reading

Posted in CF, Cracking the code, Cystic Fibrosis, Genes, genetic engineering, Science and humanities, SNP | Comments Off on Just how close are we to building an airplane?

Dangers of the Coming Age of Gene Therapy

While designer babies of the Gattaca universe raise all sorts of complicated ethical, moral, and medical issues, they are still quite a ways off. Far more realistic – and more scary – is the growing research behind the plausibility of emerging gene therapy procedures. The basic concept entails the use of biological delivery mechanisms, such […] Continue reading

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Viewing DNA in Communication Terms

In the 2001 PBS special “Cracking the Code,” host Robert Krulwich opens the documentary by claiming that the “secret of life” is a “message contained in this stunning little constellation of chemicals that we call DNA.” Both Krulwich and his first interviewee Eric Lander call DNA a “code,” a “story” or “storybook” and “information.” Krulwich […] Continue reading

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Viewing DNA in Communication Terms

In the 2001 PBS special “Cracking the Code,” host Robert Krulwich opens the documentary by claiming that the “secret of life” is a “message contained in this stunning little constellation of chemicals that we call DNA.” Both Krulwich and his first interviewee Eric Lander call DNA a “code,” a “story” or “storybook” and “information.” Krulwich […] Continue reading

Posted in communications, DNA, Genes, metaphors, Nova Cracking the Code, Science and humanities | Comments Off on Viewing DNA in Communication Terms

Science Transcending the Laboratory

         In college, we strategically divide ourselves into specific fields of study, choosing specific majors such as economics, political science, or biology for example. The Nova Special “Cracking the Code of Life” brought up some interesting points that left me astounded at how interconnected these fields of study can be. One poignant […] Continue reading

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Grumpy the Dwarf

As I approach the ripe old age of 21, I can look back fondly on some wonderful moments in my life; however, those truly unforgettable memories are often dark ones.  Like any other average Joe, I have seen enough violence and betrayal to question the kindness of other people.  After seeing some of my closest […] Continue reading

Posted in altruism, Biology, Genes, genetic engineering | Comments Off on Grumpy the Dwarf

To Bee Or Not To Bee

Altruism, as a result of evolution, has been displayed throughout the animal kingdom. Whether it is the worker termites protecting their queen or the drone bees performing a similar role, somewhere along the path altruism was deemed as favorable by evolution. However, these animals did not choose to become altruistic beings. So the question arises, […] Continue reading

Posted in altriusm, Biology, ecology, Genes, genetic engineering, values | Comments Off on To Bee Or Not To Bee