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GEN videos are informative, entertaining, and encompass all aspects of biotechnology.

Lab Rap Battle: TaqMan vs. SYBR

It's a dilemma that any real-time PCR researcher could face in his or her career: Do I choose TaqMan® or SYBR®? Life Technologies has produced the "Rap Battle in the Lab" pitting TaqMan and SYBR chemistries against one another. Gather your colleagues and watch this epic confrontation unfold.

  • The Brain Fights West Nile Virus in an Unexpected Way

    Insect-transmitted viruses like Powassan and West Nile virus may cause neurological complications. UW Medicine scientists explain their work on how the brain fends off a West Nile virus infection. A trigger that, in other cells, sets off cell death, actually protects infected brain cells and instead calls up the body's defenses to try to clear the infection.

  • The Riskiest Vaccine

    In this video, Meredith Wadman, a reporter for Science magazine, sits down and gives the real facts about the current state of vaccination—it saves lives. In particular, she takes aim at the Anti-Vaxxers in reporting that the federal Vaccine Court has never found a case of vaccination causing autism. 

  • The Mystery of Mosquito Flight

    For a long time, insect flight was a mystery: How do they stay aloft with large bodies and small wings? For mosquitos, the puzzle is slightly different: How do they fly while moving their wings through only a small angle with each flap? This Nature video finally solves this aerodynamic problem.

  • Inside ALS

    While we do not have a cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), researchers are attempting to understand the mechanisms that cause nerve cell death in the disease. This video from Nature describes our current understanding of how ALS damages the ability for DNA to repair itself.

  • DNA: Past to Present 2017

    National DNA Day is not only a celebration of the structure and sequence of the double-helix, but also the tireless commitment of researchers to understand the complexities of our genetic blueprint. As we revel in all things DNA, the GEN editorial staff has assembled a brief video timeline highlighting significant dates in DNA discovery.

  • SHERLOCK: Detecting Disease with CRISPR

    Dr. Feng Zhang and other researchers from the Broad Institute have developed a new tool to complement CRISPR technology. SHERLOCK (specific high-sensitivity enzymatic reporter unlocking) is a CRISPR enzyme that can be used to detect as little as a single molecule of target RNA or DNA. It has vast potential in molecular diagnostics.

  • Hunting Microbe Wields a “Gatling Gun” Harpoon

    Single-celled organisms have intricate microscopic weapons evolved for capturing prey, as this video from Science illustrates.

  • Immunology Wars: Monoclonal Antibodies

    Our immune systems are at war with cancer. This animation from the journal Nature reveals how monoclonal antibodies can act as valuable reinforcements to shore up our defenses–and help battle cancer.

  • Stop-Motion Microscopy

    A team of researchers recently released an open-source software program that allows microscopes to automatically track and record specimens over time. As shown in this Science movie, the team used their program to capture film of A. thaliana roots growing (both vertically and on a rotating plate) and the cells inside growing zebrafish embryos. 

  • Women in Life Science

    Imaginative and pioneering women have always endeavored to push the boundaries of life science research to new heights, providing invaluable contributions that have reshaped our world. From Elizabeth Blackwell, the first female physician in the U.S.; to Rosalyn Yalow, Ph.D. the first female to win both the Lasker and Nobel prizes; to Emmanuelle Charpentier, Ph.D., and Jennifer Doudna, Ph.D, the scientists who laid the groundwork for the development of the CRISPR genome technology. In honor of Women’s History Month, the editors of GEN have assembled this short presentation highlighting some of the most prominent female scientific investigators to date.

  • How to Extract Your Own DNA Using Basic Kitchen Supplies

    Popular Science shows how extracting DNA from your cells is surprisingly simple and easy to do.

  • Brain Prints Reveal Children's Reading Difficulties

    The National Science Foundation shows how a new test uses brain's electrical activity to pinpoint reading challenges early, increasing chances for success in school. Children who have difficulty learning to read, in addition to being at risk for depression, also can suffer from increased rates of bullying and can experience poorer relationships with their parents and teachers, according to some child development researchers.

  • Could This Pollinating Drone Replace Butterflies and Bees?

    Remote-controlled drone can transfer pollen from one flower to another. 

  • Silver Ion-Coated Medical Devices Could Fight MRSA While Creating New Bone

    MRSA infections are caused by a type of staph bacteria that has become antibiotic resistant. The rise of MRSA is limiting the treatment options. An international team of researchers, led by Elizabeth Loboa, dean of the University of Missouri College of Engineering, has used silver ion-coated scaffolds, or biomaterials that are created to hold stem cells, which slow the spread of or kill MRSA while regenerating new bone. Scientists feel that the biodegradable and biocompatible scaffolds could be the first step in the fight against MRSA in patients.

  • Cotton Candy Machine Used to Regrow Human Tissue

    Novel approach to creating fibers the size of capillaries could be the next advance in tissue regeneration.

  • What Your Mucus Tells You Is Snot Too Bad

    It’s peak cold and flu season, and mucus is making many of our lives miserable. But despite being a little icky, phlegm gets a bad rap. This germ-fighting goo contains cells and chemical compounds that help us power through a cold. You can also think of mucus as a traffic light for your health — what turns up in our used tissues can be a useful clue about the inner workings of our immune systems.

  • Inside the Tiny Ecosystems Hiding in Glaciers

    Glaciers might look like just lifeless frozen wastelands, but they are not! There are unique ecosystems hidden inside of them.

  • Tying the Molecular Knot

    Scientists from the University of Manchester department of chemistry were able to tie what might be the world’s tightest knot. Using a novel self-assembly process, knitting molecular strands around metal ions, this 192-atom closed loop (20 nm long) has breakthrough potential in the manufacturing of strong, lightweight, and flexible materials.

  • The Legal Battle over CRISPR

    Since 2012, UCal-Berkeley and the Broad Institute have been embroiled in a legal battle over who owns the idea of CRISPR. As seen in this video from Chemical & Engineering News (Speaking of Chemistry), while it seems that no immediate end is in sight, some skirmishes have been won and we can start to see where the final battlefield will be fought.

  • Moth Drives a Robot Car

    A new study by scientists at the Research Center for Advanced Science and Technology at the University of Tokyo suggests that drug-sniffing dogs may soon have a competitor in the workplace: an insect-piloted robotic vehicle that could help scientists build better odor-tracking robots to find disaster victims, detect illicit drugs or explosives, and sense leaks of hazardous materials.