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Smells like gene spirit – Naked Genetics 14.02.14

The Human Nose (c) LHOON @ wikipedia

Smell is probably the oldest sense, hardwired right into our brains and closely linked to memory. Now researchers are trying to unravel the complex genetics that underpin it. Plus, contagious dog genital cancers, gene therapy for blindness, and a rather slimy gene of the month.

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In this edition of Naked Genetics

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  • The Human Nose (c) LHOON @ wikipedia

    01:02 – How do I smell?

    Stuart Firestein, Professor of Biology at Columbia University, explained to me how our sense of smell works, and why it’s so important

  • eye iris (c) Nick4gwen

    09:16 – Gene therapy for blindness

    Researchers have carried out a small but successful trial of gene therapy for a type of blindness.

  • A PET scan, illustrating of Schizophrenia's effect on the brain (c) Andreas Meyer-Lindenberg, M.D., Ph.D., NIMH Clinical Brain Disorders Branch on the tree of life.

    14:41 – Genes and schizophrenia

    US researchers have pinpointed new genetic variations linked to
    the psychiatric condition schizophrenia

  • coral reef scape (c) Nick Hobgood

    15:50 – Sequencing the coral community

    Japanese researchers have analysed the genes in a whole coral community, including the corals and the organisms living on them

  • Maggots (c) Krimpet, Wikimedia Commons

    17:00 – Scent of a maggot

    At the University of Manchester, Professor Matthew Cobb and his team are studying how maggots smell things.

  • DNA (c) Mnolf

    24:39 – How does the polymerase chain reaction work?

    Polymerase Chain Reaction – how does it work? I’ve read a brief explanation
    on Wikipedia, but it seemed more to describe the heating cycles scientists go through without, explaining how copies of DNA are produced and amplified.

  • Pond snail (c) H. Krisp

    27:49 – Gene of the month – Escargot

    Our gene of the month is Escargot, named after the French word for snail, but also known by the less exotic name Fleabag.

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