A group of DIYBio enthusiasts are making “real vegan cheese” using synthetic biology.Continue Reading
Are we entering an age where those technologies, formerly found only in the imaginations of science fiction authors, now become possible for anyone to attempt? What can we do? How far should we go? These are questions we’re only beginning to explore.
World Maker Faire in New York will be offering a robust assortment of DIY Bio presentations an exhibits, with everything from circuits created from slime-molds to hacking a brain’s EEG signals.
Interesting Instructable from Dr. Patrik D’haeseleer, Harvard-trained computational biologist and denizen of Sunnyvale biotech hackerspace BioCurious. Bioprinting, which is basically 3D printing with living cells, has been much in the news lately, with breathless tales of fully 3D-printed living organs and replacement body parts. There is of course a fair bit of hype going on here, but also, at the core, a body of very interesting applied research.Continue Reading
Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans is a gram-negative bacterium that lives, in the natural world, in iron sulfide (aka “pyrite,” aka “fool’s gold) deposits, where it eats iron and sulfur and excretes sulfuric acid. Now, a team of graduates, undergraduates, and post-docs at New York’s Columbia and Cooper Union universities is working to develop a genetically-modified strain of A. ferrooxidans…Continue Reading
Like a lot of professional-grade scientific equipment, purpose-made glove boxes are spendy, especially if you buy a new one. That’s why I think a lot of hobby, citizen, and just plain ol’ thrifty scientists will be excited about this DIY version from NYU ITP student Nelson Ramon.Continue Reading
Pioneering bioartist Oron Catts will give a two-part workshop and lecture at Brooklyn’s Genspace later this month.Continue Reading
The hard way, of course, is to splice in the gene that codes for green fluorescent protein, as in the case of, say that GFP bunny that made the rounds a few years back. That’s a bit of a project, really.
This quickie version, from everybody’s favorite anonymous, Jigsaw-voiced YouTube chemhacker NurdRage, amounts to extracting the fluorescent dye from highlighters into water and, you know, sticking the cut stems down in there for while. To use scientific terms.
Cool enough. And though I’m a big NurdRage fan, I have to protest the use of “glow in the dark” to describe what’s happening here. In truth, these flowers are fluorescent, because they appear to glow in the dark under UV light. But what’s really happening is near-instantaneous re-radiation, of absorbed UV photons, in the visible band. True GITD materials—like those stick-on stars on your bedroom ceiling—work by the entirely different process of phosphorescence. And although it may never be possible to make a living flower truly phosphorescent, there was recently a very interesting advance in the field of phosphorescent materials. [via Neatorama]Continue Reading