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Tourist in Turkey

September 11th 2010 Our time in Turkey was relatively short, but we saw and learned a lot in that time. Our first stop was in Canakkale, it would have been an uneventful 1 night stop if it wasn’t for this…..Byron Hellespont Bicentenary Swim. This yearly race allows you to swim the 3...

Turkish Transect

September 10th 2010 Tonight we arrived in the Greek town of Alexandroupolis, which is located in northeast Aegean Sea. In the last 3 days we have collected 10 samples from 5 sites; it has been a long couple days! In the last blog I talked about the 2 sample sites in the Black Sea, since then...

Back To Sampling In The Black Sea and Rough Rough Weather

September 9th 2010 Hello everyone! I know it has been a long time since the last post from Sorcerer II. Let me take the time to explain………… early August we sailed to Greece. As I have mentioned in the past we have permits with each country to collect samples, these permits have...

Take home message of the 2010 Amebiasis Montreal Meeting: beware of who you kiss…

The Entamoeba community is a small and collegial one. Everyone knows everyone and everyone else wants to collaborate, and learn and do more to tackle down this neglected among neglected diseases. For many, the thought of an amoeba brings to memory Garry Larson’s The Far Side amorphous...

Entamoeba histolytica research presented at the Molecular Parasitology Meeting

Entamoeba histolytica causes invasive intestinal and extraintestinal infections, known as amoebiasis, in about 50 million people and still remains a significant cause of human death in developing countries. However, for unknown reasons, fewer than 10% of E. histolytica infections are...

Virtual Comparative Metagenomics

We have created an open virtualization format (OVF) package of JCVI's Metagenomics Reports (METAREP)- a high performance comparative metagenomics analysis tool. The software runs on a web server, retrieves data from two different database systems and uses R for statistical analysis. The new OVF...

Italy: Sites and Sailing

Saturday July 31st When I last wrote we had finished our 10 day sampling window in Italian waters. On Wednesday July 21st we arrived in Rome the same day Dr. Venter, Heather Kowalski, and Darwin the super boat dog had flown in from the states. We spent 3 days in Rome, most of the time was...

10 Days of Italian Sampling Coming to a Close

Tuesday July 20th On July 16th we finished our Straits of Messina sampling and headed into the Ionian and Adriatic Seas.  We sailed overnight and collected our Ionian Sea sample,  we continued  northeast and  on July 18th we collected our Adriatic...

HMP Consortium - St. Louis Missouri

Human Microbiome Project Consortium – September 2010 – St Louis, Missouri We received warm welcome messages from Dr George Weinstock and Dr Jane Petersen as well as a humorous welcome from Dr Larry Shapiro, Dean of Washington University Medical School.  It was wonderful to see so...


Grow by Ginkgo

Getting Under the Skin

Amid an insulin crisis, one project aims to engineer microscopic insulin pumps out of a skin bacterium.


Planet Microbe

There are more organisms in the sea, a vital producer of oxygen on Earth, than planets and stars in the universe.

Vanity Fair

The Next Climate Change Calamity?: We’re Ruining the Microbiome, According to Human-Genome-Pioneer Craig Venter

In a new book (coauthored with Venter), a Vanity Fair contributor presents the oceanic evidence that human activity is altering the fabric of life on a microscopic scale.


Lessons from the Minimal Cell

“Despite reducing the sequence space of possible trajectories, we conclude that streamlining does not constrain fitness evolution and diversification of populations over time. Genome minimization may even create opportunities for evolutionary exploitation of essential genes, which are commonly observed to evolve more slowly.”

Quanta Magazine

Even Synthetic Life Forms With a Tiny Genome Can Evolve

By watching “minimal” cells regain the fitness they lost, researchers are testing whether a genome can be too simple to evolve.


Privacy concerns sparked by human DNA accidentally collected in studies of other species

Two research teams warn that human genomic “bycatch” can reveal private information

New York Times

Scientists Unveil a More Diverse Human Genome

The “pangenome,” which collated genetic sequences from 47 people of diverse ethnic backgrounds, could greatly expand the reach of personalized medicine.


First human ‘pangenome’ aims to catalogue genetic diversity

Researchers release draft results from an ongoing effort to capture the entirety of human genetic variation.



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