Gene Sequencing on a USB Stick

A British company has announced it will release a small gene sequencing device the size of a USB stick which plugs into a laptop computer to deliver its sequencing results.

What's the Latest Development?


Gene sequencing, which has the potential to create personalized medicine, is getting smaller, faster and cheaper. The latest development comes from a British company which will release a DNA sequencing device the size of a USB memory stick and plug into a laptop computer to deliver its sequencing results. The sequencer works by using a technique called nanopore sequencing, which analyzes a strand of DNA by pulling it through a microscopic hole. The device is expected to cost less than $900, allowing researchers greater access.

What's the Big Idea?

Sequencing DNA involves determining the order of its chemical constituents, which in turn determine inherited traits, like susceptibility to some diseases. The size and cost of the sequencing stick will help to move DNA analysis from the research laboratory into patient care, further paving the way for the development of personalized medicine. "It might also help doctors to sequence genes at a patient's bedside, wildlife biologists to study genes in the field, or food inspectors to identify pathogens."

Photo credit: shutterstock.com

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Sponsored
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

Are cats jerks, or is it YOU who is the jerk?

A new study from Oregon State University makes it clear: it's you.

Photo: Wikipedia Commons
Surprising Science
  • Researchers discovered that the more attention you give a cat, the more likely they are to return it.
  • Cats are territorial; being in their home environment greatly affects their attitude.
  • The common wisdom that cats are aloof is provably false.
Keep reading Show less

Why avoiding logical fallacies is an everyday superpower

10 of the most sandbagging, red-herring, and effective logical fallacies.

Photo credit: Miguel Henriques on Unsplash
Personal Growth
  • Many an otherwise-worthwhile argument has been derailed by logical fallacies.
  • Sometimes these fallacies are deliberate tricks, and sometimes just bad reasoning.
  • Avoiding these traps makes disgreeing so much better.
Keep reading Show less
Videos
  • Facebook and Google began as companies with supposedly noble purposes.
  • Creating a more connected world and indexing the world's information: what could be better than that?
  • But pressure to return value to shareholders came at the expense of their own users.
Keep reading Show less