Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News

AUG 2018

Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (GEN) is the world's most widely read biotech publication. It provides the R&D community with critical information on the tools, technologies, and trends that drive the biotech industry.

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For more information, visit our website (, click on New Products, and search through our comprehensive new products database. New Products 30 | AUGUST 2018 | Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News | Best of the Web All of the links to the URLs described above are posted on GEN's website, To suggest a website for Best of the Web, please send the URL to: Key Strong Points Weak Points Excellent Ratings Very Good Good 9 – HHHH HHH HH DropViz HHHH 9 Tutorial video provided, sequencing data available for download The brain is an incredibly complex organ, due in part to the sheer number of different cell types that compose its structure. DropViz, a project from the McCarroll Lab at Harvard Medical School and the Macosko Lab at the Broad Institute, aims to shed some light on these cells. DropViz is a collection of comprehensive RNAseq data taken from nine different parts of the mouse brain that has been compiled in a format that allows users to search for genes in these particular regions to see their expression levels. On the website, users can explore cell types and compare genes within or across re- gions. Although DropViz currently only includes a few regions in the mouse brain, it promises to be an invaluable resource for neuroscientists hoping to closely examine gene expression in the brain. Synthego Genome Engineering Solutions HHHH 9 Well-designed website, variety of products and resources – Mainly focused on selling products The gene editing capabilities of CRISPR-Cas9 have caused it to become an invaluable tool in biology, and the system only promises to become more vital to biological research as time goes on. Synthego is a company that focuses on genome engi- neering through CRISPR, and their website has a large amount of resources for scientists using this remarkable tool. The company's website has a variety of information, including eBooks on topics like the basics of CRISPR and designing appropriate experiments using CRISPR, and several webinars on topics related to genome editing. Additionally, the company sells products like gene-knockout kits and synthetic sgRNA, and the website provides a tool that helps users design guide RNAs for gene knockouts. CRISPR is an incredible asset to biologists, and Synthego's website provides helpful information and resources for using this tool. START: Shiny Transcriptome Analysis Resource Tool HHHH 9 Easy to use, source code available for viewing on Github RNA sequencing has rapidly revolutionized transcriptomics and allows biologists to gather enormous amounts of gene-expression data. However, with these large datasets comes the issue of actually compiling and analyzing the data in a meaningful way. The Shiny Transcriptome Analy- sis Resource Tool (START) is here to help. START allows users to input their raw sequencing data, which gets statis- tically analyzed and returned as normalized gene intensity values. The website also allows the user to visualize the data in several different ways, including gene- expression boxplots, volcano plots, and plots based off of principle component analysis of the data. Data can be uploaded directly to the website and can also be run on your computer using R. START is an excellent, user-friendly resource for anyone looking to make sense of their mountain of RNAseq data. The Big Picture Book of Viruses HH 9 Extensive list of viruses to explore – Website is a little dated, some links don't work Viruses are no longer the sole domain of virologists, as their ability to deliver genetic information into cells provides exciting opportunities for a variety of fields. The Big Picture Book of Viruses, from the Garry Lab at Tulane University, gives users a closer look into the microscopic structure of the viruses themselves. Users can search the vast catalog of viruses by name, structure, host, or disease, and get information about the virus' taxonomy, genome, and morphology. Additionally, electron microscopy images are provided for most of the viruses, which allow users to get a closer look at the unique structure of each virus. The Big Picture Book of Viruses is a fun documentation of viral types, accompanied by some very cool images of the viruses themselves. NIH Office of Science Policy HHH 9 Good overview of what the office is working on – Has a reading room, but with few resources While research is a pillar of the sci- entific community, transforming research into rational, effective poli- cies that have a meaningful impact for the broader population is critically important. If you're curious about how science policy is being shaped at the government level, check out the NIH Office of Science Policy (OSP) website. On the website, users can learn more about the OSP and their policy focus areas, which include topics ranging from data sharing and technology transfer, to biosafety and clinical research. The website also includes a calendar of upcoming meetings and events in which the office is involved. Science policy is vital, and the OSP is working to ensure that it stays that way. GraphPad Software HHH 9 Statistics guides are useful and provide a lot of information – Need to download software in order to use The incredible strides made in scientific tool devel- opment in the last decade have allowed scientists to gather larger amounts of data than ever before, but without proper visualization this data is almost impossible to interpret appropriately. GraphPad Software provides several tools to make the process of data visualization intuitive and easy. Users can download products from their website, including GraphPad Prism, which is an excellent tool for stor- ing, analyzing, and graphing data. Additionally, the website provides users with a data-analysis resource center, with guides to statistics and curve fitting. The guides are comprehensive in their coverage of basic statistics, while also providing resources for using statistical analysis within the GraphPad software. GraphPad provides great products for data consolidation and analysis, and their website provides ad- ditional information that helps make data analysis and visualization easier than ever.

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