G.01. Molecular, Biochemical, and Genetic Techniques


From GeneNetwork site:

NEBcutter V2.0

This tool will take a DNA sequence and find the large, non-overlapping open reading frames using the E.coli genetic code and the sites for all Type II and commercially available Type III restriction enzymes that cut the sequence just once. By default, only enzymes available from NEB are used, but other sets may be chosen. Just enter your sequence and "submit". Further options will appear with the output. The maximum size of the input file is 1 MByte, and the maximum sequence length is 300 KBases.

A self-study tutorial using the Allen Brain Explorer and Brain Atlas to teach concepts of mammalian neuroanatomy and brain function.

Jenks, Bruce G. (2009). A self-study tutorial using the Allen Brain Explorer and Brain Atlas to teach concepts of mammalian neuroanatomy and brain function.The Journal of Undergraduate Neuroscience Education, 8(1): A21-A25. ISBN: 15442896

Watching neurons grow

The Gertler lab at the Koch Institute is studying migration of neurons and their growth cones, actin-rich structures that guide developing axons and dendrites to their targets. In this video, lab members visualized dorsal root ganglia growth cones by infecting neurons with HSV-tdTomato from the McGovern/Picower viral core facility.

Optogenetics: A light switch for neurons

This animation illustrates optogenetics -- a radical new technology for controlling brain activity with light. Ed Boyden, the co-inventor of this technology, is a professor at the MIT Media Lab and at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research, where he continues to develop new technologies for controlling brain activity.

Untangling the brain

Our brains are a dense tangle of billions of nerve cells connected together at synapses. Knowing how everything links up is key to understanding how the brain works -- but it's a huge challenge. Figuring out the brain's wiring diagram is the aim of 'connectomics'. It's done at many scales: from the 'super highways' linking brain areas down to individual cells and their connections. This video shows how, for the first time, scientists have reconstructed the wiring of tiny pieces of the mouse brain and related it to the function of individual cells.

Method of the Year 2010: Optogenetics

This video shows how scientists can control the behaviour of cells simply by switching on a light. The technique, known as optogenetics, is teaching us about everything from how we wake up to how we learn. That's why Nature Methods has named optogenetics as its Method of the Year 2010. Read more at www.nature.com/nmeth/focus/moy2010/index.html

TED talk: Reengineering the brain

In the quest to map the brain, many scientists have attempted the incredibly daunting task of recording the activity of each neuron. Gero Miesenboeck works backward -- manipulating specific neurons to figure out exactly what they do, through a series of stunning experiments that reengineer the way fruit flies percieve light.

TED talk: A light switch for neurons

Ed Boyden shows how, by inserting genes for light-sensitive proteins into brain cells, he can selectively activate or de-activate specific neurons with fiber-optic implants. With this unprecedented level of control, he's managed to cure mice of analogs of PTSD and certain forms of blindness. On the horizon: neural prosthetics. Session host Juan Enriquez leads a brief post-talk Q&A.



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