The Cross-Border Biotech Blog

Biotechnology, Health and Business in Canada, the United States and Worldwide

Friday Science Review: Old School and New School Edition

Science Old School:

Mark Samuels’ lab at Dalhousie used positional cloning to identify a novel protein (dubbed SLC25A38 … catchy!) that appears to be responsible for a form of congenital sideroblastic anemia.  They also show that SLC25A38 is involved in heme biosynthesis.  The paper appeared among Nature Genetics’ advance publications this week. 

Science New School:

A pair of scientists at the University of Victoria in BC published a paper in PLoS One this week using computer-based homology searching and structure prediction algorithms to identify a homolog of PCNA (a protein required for lagging strand DNA replication) in Vaccinia, a dsDNA virus, indicating that lagging strand replication mechanisms are conserved across dsDNA entities from viruses to eukaryotes.

Not too far away, at Simon Fraser University, Dr. Sahinalp’s lab developed a search algorithm that may be able to help distinguish ncRNA’s (non-coding RNA) from background genomic sequences.  The paper also appeared in PLoS One and the algorithm itself is available at


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