Scientists create renewable fossil fuel alternative using bacteria

The development is a step towards commercial production of a source of fuel that could one day provide an alternative to fossil fuels.

Propane is an appealing source of cleaner fuel because it has an existing global market. It is already produced as a by-product during natural gas processing and petroleum refining, but both are finite resources. In its current form it makes up the bulk of LPG (liquid petroleum gas), which is used in many applications, from central heating to camping stoves and conventional motor vehicles.
In a new study, the team of scientists from Imperial College London and the University of Turku in Finland used Escherichia coli to interrupt the biological process that turns fatty acids into cell membranes. The researchers used enzymes to channel the fatty acids along a different biological pathway, so that the bacteria made engine-ready renewable propane instead of cell membranes.
Their ultimate goal is to insert this engineered system into photosynthetic bacteria, so as to one day directly convert solar energy into chemical fuel.
The results of the study are published in the journal Nature Communications.
read more

Scientists create renewable fossil fuel alternative using bacteria

The development is a step towards commercial production of a source of fuel that could one day provide an alternative to fossil fuels.

Propane is an appealing source of cleaner fuel because it has an existing global market. It is already produced as a by-product during natural gas processing and petroleum refining, but both are finite resources. In its current form it makes up the bulk of LPG (liquid petroleum gas), which is used in many applications, from central heating to camping stoves and conventional motor vehicles.

In a new study, the team of scientists from Imperial College London and the University of Turku in Finland used Escherichia coli to interrupt the that turns into cell membranes. The researchers used enzymes to channel the fatty acids along a different biological pathway, so that the bacteria made engine-ready renewable propane instead of cell membranes.

Their ultimate goal is to insert this engineered system into photosynthetic bacteria, so as to one day directly convert solar energy into chemical fuel.

The results of the study are published in the journal Nature Communications.

read more

Yesterday I went camping one last time with my best friend and his girlfriend Aubrey before they move to Portland in a few days. I’m definitely going to miss the simple nights spent around a campfire with our dogs, some choice beer and endless hilarity. These guys rule and I’m going to miss the ever living hell out of them.

Yesterday I went camping one last time with my best friend and his girlfriend Aubrey before they move to Portland in a few days. I’m definitely going to miss the simple nights spent around a campfire with our dogs, some choice beer and endless hilarity. These guys rule and I’m going to miss the ever living hell out of them.

Researchers discover protein’s ability to inhibit HIV release

A family of proteins that promotes virus entry into cells also has the ability to block the release of HIV and other viruses, University of Missouri researchers have found.

"This is a surprising finding that provides new insights into our understanding of not only HIV infection, but also that of Ebola and other viruses," said Shan-Lu Liu, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor in the MU School of Medicine’s Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology.
The study was recently published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Liu, the corresponding author of the study, is also an investigator with the Christopher S. Bond Life Sciences Center at MU.
According to estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one million Americans currently are living with AIDS. AIDS, which stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, is a condition characterized by progressive failure of the immune system. It is caused by the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1).
When HIV-1 or any virus infects a cell, it replicates and spreads to other cells. One type of cellular protein—T cell immunoglobulin and mucin domain, or TIM-1—has previously been shown to promote entry of some highly pathogenic viruses into host cells. Now, the MU researchers have found that the same protein possesses a unique ability to block the release of HIV-1 and Ebola virus.
read more

Researchers discover protein’s ability to inhibit HIV release

A family of proteins that promotes virus entry into cells also has the ability to block the release of HIV and other viruses, University of Missouri researchers have found.

"This is a surprising finding that provides new insights into our understanding of not only HIV infection, but also that of Ebola and other viruses," said Shan-Lu Liu, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor in the MU School of Medicine’s Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology.

The study was recently published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Liu, the corresponding author of the study, is also an investigator with the Christopher S. Bond Life Sciences Center at MU.

According to estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one million Americans currently are living with AIDS. AIDS, which stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, is a condition characterized by progressive failure of the immune system. It is caused by the type 1 (HIV-1).

When HIV-1 or any virus infects a cell, it replicates and spreads to other cells. One type of cellular protein—T cell immunoglobulin and mucin domain, or TIM-1—has previously been shown to promote entry of some highly pathogenic viruses into host cells. Now, the MU researchers have found that the same protein possesses a unique ability to block the release of HIV-1 and Ebola virus.

read more

science-junkie:

The Origin of Humans Is Surprisingly Complicated
Human family tree used to be a scraggly thing. With relatively few fossils to work from, scientists’ best guess was that they could all be assigned to just two lineages, one of which went extinct and the other of which ultimately gave rise to us. Discoveries made over the past few decades have revealed a far more luxuriant tree, however—one abounding with branches and twigs that eventually petered out. This newfound diversity paints a much more interesting picture of our origins but makes sorting our ancestors from the evolutionary dead ends all the more challenging.
Source: Scientific American

science-junkie:

The Origin of Humans Is Surprisingly Complicated

Human family tree used to be a scraggly thing. With relatively few fossils to work from, scientists’ best guess was that they could all be assigned to just two lineages, one of which went extinct and the other of which ultimately gave rise to us. Discoveries made over the past few decades have revealed a far more luxuriant tree, however—one abounding with branches and twigs that eventually petered out. This newfound diversity paints a much more interesting picture of our origins but makes sorting our ancestors from the evolutionary dead ends all the more challenging.

Source: Scientific American