Due to high mortality rates from cancer, it is necessary to discover targeted therapies that decrease side effects and increase drug efficacy. Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a targeted therapy which uses light to activate therapeutic compounds to promote cell death. In our lab, we have designed, synthesized, and characterized a new photoactive metal complex, which covalently binds to DNA upon light activation. Herein, we discuss the effect that the designed complex has on DNA amplification using Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). The PCR products resulting from reactions between DNA and the metal complex were examined prior to and following light exposure and compared to the widely used anti-cancer drug, cisplatin. The minimum concentration of designed metal complex needed for complete inhibition of DNA amplification was also determined. These results show that the complex inhibits DNA synthesis after exposure to light, indicating its potential as a PDT agent.
Late last year, the world learned of one Chinese scientist named He Jiankui who covertly helped create the world’s first gene-edited babies. While germline modifications in humans are currently prohibited across several countries worldwide, new committees such as the WHO Expert Advisory Committee on Developing Global Standards for Governance and Oversight of Human Genome Editing or the International Commission on the Clinical Use of Human Germline Genome Editing are being formed in hopes of developing frameworks that offer improved consensus regarding the current international inconsistencies surrounding human germline editing and mitigating the scientific community’s point of concern for the risk of other researchers prematurely engaging in such research (Araki and Ishii, 2014).
Over the past two decades, the quantum mechanical concepts of superposition and entanglement have been applied in game theory to produce novel and interesting results. Quantization offers significant improvements to classical games that cannot be realized using purely classical strategy spaces. Because quantum game theory is a recent development with both merits and limitations, this review attempts to critically evaluate existing research as well as gaps in the literature requiring further research.
Cowpea aphids (Aphis craccivora) are a major pest of cowpeas (Vigna unguiculata), which feed on the plant at the vegetative stage by sucking the sap. In an endeavour to find an new method of controlling aphid infestation in the Northern Ghana, an in vitro study was carried out to investigate the effect of different concentrations of aqueous false yam (Icacina oliviformis) tuber extract against cowpea black aphids (Aphis craccivora Koch).
Pseudomonas aeruginosa is the leading cause of ocular infections in those who wear contact lenses. Others have previously done a study using the antioxidant selenium-coated contact lenses to inhibit the bacteria in an animal model. However, selenium is very toxic even in small quantities. In this study, green tea which is known for its antioxidant property was used to treat contact lenses.
With the growing number of antibiotic-resistant pathogens, there is a need for new antibiotics. Bacteria within the order Actinomycetales produce the majority of known antibiotic compounds but harbor cryptic secondary metabolic pathways that likely produce thousands more antibiotics awaiting discovery. This has recently renewed interests in bioprospecting for novel Actinomycetales in underexplored environments, such as the lower atmosphere, and activating cryptic secondary metabolic pathways in previously characterized members of this order.
Understanding bacterial translation is of interest to many high school and college biology students, but hands-on research of this process has traditionally been inaccessible because of the expertise required for molecular cloning. There is also a need for more and better translational control elements that can be used for genetic circuits with applications in medicine, biotechnology, bioremediation, and biomaterials.