December 2013

New biomarker for diagnosing patients with degenerative eye disease

In a study published in the December issue of the Journal of Lipid Research, Rong Wen, Byron L. Lam and Ziqiang Guan of the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute at the University of Miami report that patients with retinitis pigmentosa have increased levels of the compound dolichol-18, compared with healthy individuals.


Harry F. Noller’s ‘Reflections’

Harry F. Noller reflects in The Journal of Biological Chemistry on his lifelong pursuit of cracking the functionality of the ribosome, via its structure, culminating in the aha moment when a “chubby L-shaped density appeared in exactly the position that we had predicted for the A site.”


Long-distance relationships in gene regulation

In a recent minireview in The Journal of Biological Chemistry, Zong Wei and colleagues at the University of Southern California give an extensive account of the significance and biological implications of long-range chromosomal interactions.


Keeping up with kinases

In a paper in a recent issue of Molecular & Cellular Proteomics, a team led by W. Andy Tao at Purdue University described a proteomic approach to identify directly the substrates of tyrosine kinases.


Deciphering the role of CGI-58 in lipid regulation

Comparative gene identification-58, or CGI-58, is best known as the causative gene in Chanarin-Dorfman syndrome, a rare neutral lipid-storage disease in humans that results in an abnormal accumulation of triacylglycerol, or TAG, in nonlipid-storing cell types such as muscle, heart and skin.


A random walk to the career I never knew I always wanted

Joanna Downer writes about how she found a career in the relatively new field of research development.


How to get teaching experience that will help land you a job

Unlike being a successful candidate for faculty positions at R1 schools, where applicants are evaluated mostly on their research, securing a position at a PUI demands both modest success as a researcher and “a demonstrated interest in teaching” (to quote a number of job announcements).


An introduction to the scientific communities on Reddit

Reddit is an Internet link aggregator where people can post links or text posts (called “self-posts”), and then users in the community can comment and up-vote or down-vote the post and comments. Up-voting a post or comment makes it more visible to the rest of the community, allowing Reddit users to decide which content is most relevant.


Special symposium recap: membrane-anchored serine proteases

The 2013 American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology special symposium on membrane-anchored serine proteases, held in September in Potomac, Md., revealed that, while there are structural and phylogenetic commonalities among these enzymes, there are also stark differences in biological function.

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