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Keyword: enzymes

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  • Enzymes Are Essential for Life; Did They Evolve?

    08/29/2018 10:14:57 AM PDT · by Heartlander · 12 replies
    Evolution News ^ | August 22, 2018 | Olen R. Brown
    Enzymes Are Essential for Life; Did They Evolve? Olen R. Brown EditorÂ’s note: We are delighted to welcome a new contributor, the esteemed microbiologist Olen R. Brown. Among other distinctions, Dr. Brown is Professor Emeritus at the University of Missouri. Darwinian evolution, even in its 21st-century form, fails the formidable task of explaining how the first enzyme arose. Evolution also fails to explain how the first enzyme was changed into the approximately 75,000 different enzymes estimated to exist in the human body or the 10 million enzymes that are thought to exist in all of EarthÂ’s biota. Join me in...
  • Scientists accidentally create mutant enzyme that eats plastic bottles

    05/15/2018 11:00:57 AM PDT · by TBP · 36 replies
    The Blaze ^ | May 14, 2018 | Digital Shorts
    One million plastic water bottles are sold every minute. Only 14 percent are recycled. The rest end up in landfill or in the ocean, taking years to decompose. Scientists have been working on an enzyme that can destroy all these bottles — and now they have succeeded by accident. UK and US scientists discovered an enzyme in the soil of a plastic landfill. While researching the enzyme, they accidentally caused it to mutate and created an enzyme that can break down plastic much faster than landfills. Currently, plastic bottles can only be recycled into carpets or clothing but this new...
  • Researchers May Have Solved 'Missing Link' Mystery in Origin of Life

    06/09/2015 8:54:48 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 96 replies
    How did life on Earth begin? It's been one of modern biology's greatest mysteries: How did the chemical soup that existed on the early Earth lead to the complex molecules needed to create living, breathing organisms? Now, researchers say they've found the missing link. Between 4.6 billion and 4.0 billion years ago, there was probably no life on Earth. The planet's surface was at first molten and even as it cooled, it was getting pulverized by asteroids and comets. All that existed were simple chemicals. But about 3.8 billion years ago, the bombardment stopped, and life arose. Most scientists think...
  • New synthetic molecules treat autoimmune disease in mice

    12/25/2011 11:25:41 AM PST · by decimon · 26 replies
    A team of Weizmann Institute scientists has turned the tables on an autoimmune disease. In such diseases, including Crohn's and rheumatoid arthritis, the immune system mistakenly attacks the body's tissues. But the scientists managed to trick the immune systems of mice into targeting one of the body's players in autoimmune processes, an enzyme known as MMP9. The results of their research appear today in Nature Medicine. Prof. Irit Sagi of the Biological Regulation Department and her research group have spent years looking for ways to home in on and block members of the matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) enzyme family. These proteins...
  • Enzyme logic biosensor for security surveillance

    02/18/2011 11:38:41 PM PST · by neverdem · 11 replies
    Chemistry World ^ | 11 February 2011 | Emma Shiells
    Scientists in the US have made a system that rapidly detects both explosives and nerve agents, providing a simple yes-no response. The technique could replace two time-consuming tests that are currently used to assess these threats.Joseph Wang and colleagues from the University of California, San Diego, combined their expertise in threat detection and electrochemical biosensors with the biocomputing experience of Evgeny Katz from Clarkson University, Potsdam, NY. The team produced an enzyme-based logic gate with the ability to simultaneously detect both nitroaromatic explosives and organophosphate nerve agents. The team fed 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene (TNT) and the nerve agent paraoxon into the system, in which a series of...
  • Enzymes power molecular logic

    03/15/2010 9:13:42 PM PDT · by neverdem · 11 replies · 361+ views
    Highlights in Chemical Technology ^ | 12 March 2010 | Nicola Wise
    A self-powered biomolecular security system has been developed by US scientists. This could be used to encrypt financial, military, or other confidential information. Recent developments in the field of biocomputing have led to biomolecular systems that use chemical information to mimic digital electronics. Now Evgeny Katz and his team at Clarkson University, Potsdam, has taken the research a step further to make a keypad lock that powers itself using a biofuel cell. The biocatalyst system is composed of three enzyme-catalysed reaction steps, explains Katz. Enzymes are applied as input signals to trigger the biochemical reactions and only when applied in the correct...
  • Small Hairy Balls Hide Foul-Tasting Healthful Enzymes (A Woman Scientist LOL)

    11/28/2009 10:18:51 PM PST · by bogusname · 43 replies · 2,277+ views
    ScienceDaily ^ | November 28, 2009 | ScienceDaily
    Dutch researcher Saskia Lindhoud has discovered a new way to package enzymes by causing charged polymers to form a 'ball of hair' around them. Her approach significantly increases the utility of the enzymes. For example, healthy enzymes with a foul taste can be packaged in such a way that they are released in the stomach without being tasted...
  • Advanced biofuels: Ethanol, schmethanol

    09/27/2007 11:52:20 AM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 52 replies · 619+ views
    The Economist ^ | September 27, 2007 | The Economist
    Everyone seems to think that ethanol is a good way to make cars greener. Everyone is wrong SOMETIMES you do things simply because you know how to. People have known how to make ethanol since the dawn of civilisation, if not before. Take some sugary liquid. Add yeast. Wait. They have also known for a thousand years how to get that ethanol out of the formerly sugary liquid and into a more or less pure form. You heat it up, catch the vapour that emanates, and cool that vapour down until it liquefies. The result burns. And when Henry Ford...
  • Technology turns glycerin into ethanol

    06/25/2007 3:41:59 PM PDT · by nypokerface · 9 replies · 565+ views
    UPI ^ | 06/25/07
    HOUSTON, June 25 (UPI) -- U.S. scientists have developed a technology designed to convert waste glycerin from biodiesel plants into ethanol, another popular biofuel. Rice University Assistant Professor Ramon Gonzalez and colleagues identified the metabolic processes and conditions that allow a strain of E. coli to convert glycerin into ethanol. "It's also very efficient," said Gonzalez. "We estimate the operational costs to be about 40 percent less that those of producing ethanol from corn." U.S. biodiesel production is at an all-time high, but the industry is also facing a significant problem in how to deal with waste glycerin. One pound...
  • India's biotech queen goes for global crown

    03/21/2007 3:31:48 AM PDT · by CarrotAndStick · 3 replies · 312+ views
    The Sydney Morning Herald ^ | March 21, 2007 - 5:35PM | The Sydney Morning Herald
    When Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw founded Biocon India in 1978 with 10,000 rupees (225 US dollars) and an office in a rented car garage, no banker was willing to give her a loan. Back then, no one had heard of biotechnology, which uses micro-organisms such as bacteria or biological substances like enzymes to make drugs and synthetic hormones. Women entrepreneurs were also rare and finding recruits willing to work under a female boss was difficult. Mazumdar-Shaw, hailed in 2004 as India's richest woman with a personal fortune of 21 billion rupees, and Biocon, India's biggest biotech firm with 3,000 employees, have come...
  • Ethanol Plant "Brews" Grass Into Gas(Great News!)

    05/16/2006 8:36:11 PM PDT · by kellynla · 51 replies · 2,484+ views
    National Geographic News ^ | May 16, 2006 | Taylor Kennedy
    A Canadian company has developed a new, more efficient process to make the alternative fuel ethanol from farm waste. With today's high oil prices, experts hope the new technology could reduce demand on fossil fuels and increase energy security. "In the past, ethanol fuel use has been limited, because the cost of production was too high," said Jim Easterly, a Washington, D.C.-based bioenergy consultant. "Ethanol produced from corn kernels and wheat grain has historically been more expensive than gasoline produced from oil." Producing corn-based ethanol, for example, uses energy from oil and electricity for everything from growing the corn to...
  • Enzymes interdict nerve agents in 'bioscavenger' program (Chemical WMD Defense News)

    07/21/2005 6:04:59 PM PDT · by SandRat · 2 replies · 315+ views
    ARNEWS ^ | July 20, 2005 | By Karen Fleming-Michael
    FORT DETRICK, Md.(Army News Service, July 20, 2005) - Plasma, goats and plants may one day hold the key to protecting warfighters and the public from nerve agents. Boosting the amounts of an enzyme called butyrylcholinesterase, normally present in small quantities in blood plasma as detoxifiers, can interdict nerve agents when they enter the bloodstream so the nerve agents can't reach their targets. Knowing this, researchers for 20 years have been finding ways of producing large amounts of the enzyme they call a "bioscavenger." "The bioscavenger is being tested against all known nerve agents," said Col. Michelle Ross, deputy commander...
  • Does a New Pill Contain the Fountain of Youth?

    06/03/2005 7:26:49 AM PDT · by Lathspell · 57 replies · 2,859+ views
    Protandim May Slow Aging Process by Increasing Enzymes That Fight Free Radicals- Dr. Joe McCord's latest research may unravel the mystery of aging. And if he succeeds, the answer could come in the form of a little yellow pill called Protandim. The University of Colorado at Denver biochemistry professor has conducted decades of experiments into a special class of enzymes in the cell that some hope have the potential of extending lives and possibly preventing chronic diseases like cancer, diabetes and heart disease. Much of his work has centered on oxidative stress -- which increases with age. TBARS, which are...
  • The Story of India's Richest Woman

    03/02/2005 3:37:19 AM PST · by CarrotAndStick · 8 replies · 952+ views
    Rediff ^ | March 02, 2005 | Rediff
    Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw should have been afraid. Every day for three months in 1985 she waded through a crowd of angry employees to get to her office at Biocon India, a maker of enzymes in Bangalore. This was her payback for hiring uneducated employees. After they joined a communist labor union, she retaliated by automating the plant. The crowd outside burned her in effigy. "I didn't think they'd hurt a woman," she says. But her detractors have certainly tried to hold her back, making it about as tough as possible for a woman to find her way. India's 40 richest! A...
  • Enzymes stitch together non-natural DNA [Getting closer to lab-made life]

    02/24/2004 3:55:22 AM PST · by PatrickHenry · 90 replies · 747+ views
    Nature Magazine ^ | 24 February 2004 | PHILIP BALL
    Guided evolution and HIV help create man-made stuff of life. Researchers have found new ways to string together artificial DNA bases. The techniques could aid the creation of altered genetic material for applications in medicine and technology. Floyd Romesberg and co-workers at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California, have harnessed the principles of evolution to find an enzyme capable of assembling non-standard DNA1. In a second study, Steven Benner of the University of Florida in Gainesville and colleagues used an enzyme made by HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, to do the same job. Benner's enzyme is even...
  • How Evolution Monkeys with Duplicate Genes

    03/12/2002 11:41:34 AM PST · by Physicist · 396 replies · 1,185+ views
    Academic Press Daily InScight ^ | March 5, 2002 | Ben Shouse
    An endangered monkey has given scientists new insights into evolution. The leaf-eating douc langur, native to East and Southeast Asia, has a quot;duplicatedquot; gene that started as an extra copy of a gene for a particular enzyme but mutated into a gene for another enzyme with a different purpose. By recreating the gene's path from one enzyme to the other, scientists have addressed an important debate over how natural selection shapes such duplications. Throughout evolutionary history, extra copies of genes have popped up spontaneously in the genomes of many organisms. This gene duplication is thought to be a major source...