Richard Harris http://wfdd.org en Feds Tighten Lab Security After Anthrax, Bird Flu Blunders http://wfdd.org/post/feds-tighten-lab-security-after-anthrax-bird-flu-blunders In the course of trying to understand a laboratory accident involving anthrax, officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stumbled upon another major blunder — involving a deadly flu virus.<p>The flu incident apparently posed no health risk, but it went unreported to top brass for six weeks. Those officials now recognize a <a href="http://www.npr.org/2014/07/09/330038131/researchers-aghast-over-discovery-of-smallpox-vials">pattern of problems</a> in their world-class laboratory. Fri, 11 Jul 2014 22:38:00 +0000 Richard Harris 12359 at http://wfdd.org Feds Tighten Lab Security After Anthrax, Bird Flu Blunders Quick DNA Tests Crack Medical Mysteries Otherwise Missed http://wfdd.org/post/quick-dna-tests-crack-medical-mysteries-otherwise-missed Researchers are developing a radical way to diagnose infectious diseases. Thu, 05 Jun 2014 21:17:00 +0000 Richard Harris 11678 at http://wfdd.org Quick DNA Tests Crack Medical Mysteries Otherwise Missed Custom Chromo: First Yeast Chromosome Built From Scratch http://wfdd.org/post/custom-chromo-first-yeast-chromosome-built-scratch Using the labor of dozens of undergraduate students, scientists have built a customized yeast chromosome from scratch.<p>It's a milestone in the rapidly growing field of synthetic biology, where organisms can be tailored for industrial use. In this case, the near-term goal is to understand the genetics of yeast, and eventually the genetics of us.<p>This was quite an undertaking. Yeast have about 6,000 genes packed in 16 tidy bundles called chromosomes. Thu, 27 Mar 2014 20:14:00 +0000 Richard Harris 10341 at http://wfdd.org Custom Chromo: First Yeast Chromosome Built From Scratch Never Mind Eyesight, Your Nose Knows Much More http://wfdd.org/post/never-mind-eyesight-your-nose-knows-much-more The human eye can distinguish more than 2 million distinct colors. But scientists studying smell now say they have their vision colleagues beat: The human nose, they say, can distinguish more than a trillion different smells.<p>Yes, trillion with a T.<p>That new figure displaces a much more modest estimate. Thu, 20 Mar 2014 20:36:00 +0000 Richard Harris 10226 at http://wfdd.org Never Mind Eyesight, Your Nose Knows Much More Ancient And Vulnerable: 25 Percent Of Sharks And Rays Risk Extinction http://wfdd.org/post/ancient-and-vulnerable-25-percent-sharks-and-rays-risk-extinction There are more than a thousand species of sharks and rays in the world, and nearly a quarter of them are threatened with extinction, according to a new study. Wed, 22 Jan 2014 10:23:00 +0000 Richard Harris 9384 at http://wfdd.org Ancient And Vulnerable: 25 Percent Of Sharks And Rays Risk Extinction