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News: October 2011

  • Oct 24, 2011

    Citizen Science Takes Off: Could Community Labs Hatch the Next Generation of Bio Innovators? news

    ...George Church, a scientific advisor to the DNA testing company 23andMe and a founder of the Personal Genome Project, has trained several DIYbio pioneers in his Harvard Medical School genetics lab. Biohackers are to biotechnology what Steve Jobs was to the IBM S/360 mainframe, he says. Church sees biohackers as early adopters of technology that will eventually be in as many hands as the iPhone and predicts "a complete disruption of the IP landscape" as a result...

    Tags: Gene Sequencing, George Church

  • Oct 20, 2011

    Exploring Emerging Frontiers Between Science and Architecture news

    In mid-September, I had the opportunity to participate in an Adaptive Architecture Workshop entitled "Buildings Inspired by Nature: Inventing the Future Built Environment," sponsored by the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University. The workshop hosts—Wyss faculty Don Ingber, Joanna Aizenberg, and visiting scholar Chuck Hoberman—organized the workshop thematically into the categories of materials, design, intelligence, energy, and future.

    Tags: Adaptive Material Technologies, Chuck Hoberman, Don Ingber, Joanna Aizenberg

  • Oct 19, 2011

    Early excellence, rewarded news

    Harvard Gazette
    Two young Harvard scientists will each receive $2.54 million or more in National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants .... John Calarco, a Bauer Fellow at the Faculty of Arts and Sciences Center for Systems Biology, and Harris Wang, a Technology Development Fellow at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, were among the first 10 researchers to receive NIH Director’s Early Independence Awards...

    Tags: Synthetic Biology

  • Oct 17, 2011

    Slippery Slope: Cues From a Carnivorous Plant news

    Harvard Focus
    ...“Inspired by the pitcher plant, we developed a new coating that outperforms its natural and synthetic counterparts and provides a simple and versatile solution for liquid and solid repellency,” said principal investigator Joanna Aizenberg, a core faculty member at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering...

    Tags: Adaptive Material Technologies, Joanna Aizenberg

  • Oct 11, 2011

    Progress Being Made In Quantum Computing, Qubit By Qubit news

    Red Orbit
    Engineers and physicists at Harvard have managed to capture light in tiny diamond pillars embedded in silver, releasing a stream of single photons at a controllable rate. The advance represents a milestone on the road to quantum networks in which information can be encoded in spins of electrons and carried through a network via light, one photon at a time...

  • Oct 10, 2011

    Post oil: Electrofuels are an oil-substitute minus the eons news

    Christian Science Monitor
    Over millions of years, natural processes turned the buried remains of dinosaurs, plants, and ancient fish into crude oil. Pamela Silver and her colleagues aim to compress the oil-forming process to nearly instantaneous, with some carbon dioxide, a dash of electricity, and a lot of help from the diminutive star of her Harvard Medical School lab in Boston: Shewanella oneidensis...

    Tags: Pamela Silver, Synthetic Biology

  • Oct 8, 2011

    Slippery When Wet (or anytime) news

    CBC Radio
    Taking a page from nature's book, Dr. Joanna Aizenberg, a Professor of Materials Science and Chemistry, and Chemical Biology at Harvard University, and her group, have made super slippery surfaces by emulating a carnivorous plant...

    Tags: Adaptive Material Technologies, Joanna Aizenberg

  • Oct 7, 2011

    Wyss Institute project targets sepsis news

    Harvard Gazette
    The Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard has been awarded a $12.3 million, four-year grant from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to develop a treatment for sepsis, a commonly fatal bloodstream infection. Sepsis is a major cause of injury and death among combat-injured soldiers in the field, as well as patients in hospital intensive care units.

    Tags: Biomimetic Microsystems, Don Ingber, George Church, Joanna Aizenberg

  • Oct 1, 2011

    Charting the Course news

    The Scientist
    ...As an undergraduate at Duke University in the mid-1970s, George Church, now a geneticist at Harvard Medical School, keyed in every known nucleic acid sequence, some 8,000 bases in all, mostly tRNAs, and folded them into three-dimensional shapes using software he had written. “I said, ‘Wow, this is a great game,’ ”he recalls. “Why don’t we just sequence everything in sight and fold it up?”...

    Tags: Gene Expression, Gene Sequencing, George Church

  • Oct 1, 2011

    Tinkering With Life news

    The Scientist
    In the late 1990s, a handful of physicists and engineers began to take a greater interest in biology. The Human Genome Project was spitting out more and more gene sequences—blueprints for the protein building blocks of the cell—generating a flood of new information about the molecular machinery of life. Trouble was, there were not enough biologists doing the job of figuring out how all these genes and proteins worked together to create a living, breathing organism...

    Tags: George Church, James J. Collins, Pamela Silver, Synthetic Biology

  • Oct 1, 2011

    Uncovering Hidden Hi-Tech Messages news

    Ivannhoe News [video]
    Engineers and applied scientists are creating a special ink that can hide messages in electronic chips. When a certain chemical is applied to the ink, in varying concentrations, it changes the message that is revealed.

    Tags: Adaptive Material Technologies, Joanna Aizenberg

We've won a Webby Award!

Wyss Institute is proud to announce our win in the 2012
Webby Awards in the Science category.