“Artificial life” postponed for 3-10 years

Instead of being mere months away from creating a synthetic organism, yesterday’s AP news article predicts creation of a synthetic organism occuring in a more comfortably distant 3-10 years. Two aspects of the article caught my attention. From the article: Szostak is also optimistic about the next step – getting nucleotides, the building blocks … Continue reading

Roy Spencer on feedback in climate models

Climatologist Roy Spencer posted a very interesting entry this week at the Climate Science blog, entitled “Positive Feedback: Have We Been Fooling Ourselves?“, in which he focuses on the following concern: The traditional way in which feedbacks have been diagnosed from observational data has very likely misled us about the existence … Continue reading

3-D Microscopy of Living Organisms

Published online in Nature Methods today [doi:10.1038/nmeth1078]: Tomographic phase microscopy We report a technique for quantitative three-dimensional (3D) mapping of refractive index in live cells and tissues using a phase-shifting laser interferometric microscope with variable illumination angle. We demonstrate tomographic imaging of cells and multicellular organisms, and time-dependent changes in cell … Continue reading