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[Ars] Directed evolution gets a significant speed boost

post #1 of 8
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Quote:
Synthetic biology attempts to generate biomolecules with new and/or improved activities for use as, say, drugs or fuel. One way of producing new biomolecules involves directed evolution, in which specific functions are selected for, but that has been slow and labor intensive. A faster method comes from Esvelt et al. at Harvard, who have devised a system for directed evolution that is rapid and continuous, cycling through twenty to thirty rounds of selection in a single day without human intervention.

The new system relies on phage, viruses that infect bacteria, and is thus called "phage-assisted continuous evolution"—yielding the apt acronym PACE. In this system, molecules from E. coli flow through an evocatively named "lagoon" filled with phage. Each phage contains a copy of the Gene Of Interest (GOI), the one that will undergo directed evolution.
Source

That picture.. I'm scared..
post #2 of 8
Quote:
The new system relies on rage, viruses that infect bacteria.
Oh god....
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post #3 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by srsdude View Post

That picture.. I'm scared..
You know it's just bacteriophage?
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post #4 of 8
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The authors note that “the PACE system can be assembled entirely from a modest collection of commercially available equipment and does not require the manufacture of any specialized components,” making it ideal for those DIY bio types hanging out in Brooklyn.
My hobbies are playing games, working on cars and directing evolution.
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post #5 of 8
Viruses have always fascinated me. Parasitic non-living replicators, I would love to know their evolutionary history.
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post #6 of 8
Scientist: This is super AIDS, its like AIDS, but with more AIDS.

OT: This sounds very good, as long as this stuff can't spread and take over(kind of like what bio-engineered plants are doing) I'm cool.
Edited by qwertymac93 - 5/16/11 at 2:41am
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post #7 of 8
Good. Hopefully, genetic engineers start working on forming the better human being.
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post #8 of 8
That will end well

TBH I'm a bit scared of bio stuff. It seems to be harder to make nuke in your basement than doomsday virus. I mean for a nuke you at least need some stuff but for a virus you just **** in a can, run it through that strange gadget and claim survival of the fittest.
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