Displaying episodes 1 - 30 of 58 in total
This is a podcast about the biggest explosion in biological knowledge in human history and it is has been happening all around us over the last 30 years. The Genomics Revolution is based on 1) some basic knowledge about DNA – how it is structured and faithfully replicated, 2) an ambitious goal to fully understand the complete genetic basis of human biology, 3) new ways to store, collate, and compare incredibly large data sets, and 4) lots of determined biologists, chemists, computer scientists, and statisticians working together in new collaborations that have smashed holes in academic disciplines and forged new interdisciplinary/multidisciplinary academic departments and biotechnology companies.
How genes first came to be described, then connected to the proteins they usually encode and eventually to two methods for sequencing DNA, the stuff of genes.
The beginnings of the genomics revolution came with a bold proposal to sequence the entire genetic material, the genome, of a human being. It was very much the genetic equivalent of President Kennedy challenging the US to put a man on the moon.
How do we determine the sequence of a DNA molecule that might be hundreds of thousands to millions of base pairs in size? Not all at one time. In this episode, we will learn about two strategies that emerged for sequencing small pieces of DNA and then merging them together into a virtual copy of an entire genome.
1995 marks the beginning of the true genomics era as the first genome of a cellular organism was published. The shotgun sequencing approach proved to be successful. This episode goes over the technical details of this historic accomplishment.
The first genome sequence of a cellular organism was published in 1995. In this episode, we see what a sequence call tell us about the biology of an organism.
Now we will tour through a survey of some sequenced genomes. All three domains of life will be represented, but the Bacteria and Archaea will get the lion’s share. For each genome, we will learn why scientists are interested in the organism, some basic data about the genome, its genes and encoded proteins, a few surprises from the genome sequence, and an example of how scientists took the next step past having the genome sequence. Our first sequence is my personal favorite, the soil bacterium and plant pathogen and biotechnology agent Agrobacterium tumefaciens C58.
Brad jumps in with 2 pathogens of insect larvae that do their dirty work in collaboration with tiny soil roundworms that carry the bacteria in their gut. Together, the roundworm and bacteria use insect larvae as food sources and can be used as biocontrol agents for certain plant-eating grubs.
In this episode from the survey of genomes, Kaitlyn Morse from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course moves us into the world of eukaryotic genomes. Her focus is on the first model animal for genetic analysis - Drosophila melanogaster or as most people know it, the fruit fly.
In this episode from the survey of genomes, Brett Bentkowski from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course introduces us to the unicellular eukaryote Schizosaccharomyces pombe, also called a fission yeast. It is a model system for understanding the cell cycle.
A grape jelly smell and greenish blue pigments in an open wound are a sure sign of a serious infection that is hard to cure. Kiara Jeffrey from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course introduces to the pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
Bacterial pathogens don’t just attack humans and other animals. There are many important bacterial pathogens of plants and Sam Hitchcock, working with just his “off hand” (his dominant hand was in a cast), tells us about a pathogen that can attack over 200 different kinds of plants - Ralstonia solanacearum.
Consumption, phthisis (pronounced ti-a-sis), lung fever, and the white plague are just some of the names used over the centuries for a disease that still infects upwards of 1/3 of all humans on Earth - tuberculosis. Most people don’t yet know that they are infected and may never show active symptoms. Anna Pallante from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course tells us what we can learn from the genome of its causative agent - Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
Ka Shing Allan So from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course introduces us to the largest bacterial cause of food-related gastrointestinal infections - Campylobacter jejuni.
In this episode from a survey of genomes, Danielle Vincent from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course will introduce us to Vibrio cholerae El Tor N16961 and what its genome tells us about its ability to cause the dreaded disease cholera.
Time to talk about a good guy bacterium in the human gut! Stephanie Cipa from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course tells the fascinating story of the bacterial genus Bifidobacterium that has evolved to live in the guts of humans and other mammals.
Tim Stucky takes us away from the human microbiome out into nature, specifically clean freshwater habitats with very few nutrients. He discusses the genome of Caulobacter crescentus, a stalked bacterium that can either swim or attached itself to a substrate.
In this episode from a survey of genomes, Daijah Sek from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course walks us through the genome of the syphilis pathogen Treponema pallidum.
Being at the wrong place at the wrong time can sometimes mean trouble and that is exactly what happens when a particular soil bacterium gets into a wound. Ashley Redman from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course spills the dirt on the leading cause of gas gangrene - Clostridium perfringens.
In this episode from the survey of genomes, Taylor Yamamoto from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course discusses the genome of E. coli O157:H7, not a microbe you want to meet in a dark alley or in an undercooked hamburger.
In this episode from the survey of genomes, Alexis Polcawich from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course talks about Yersinia pestis, the microbe behind one of the deadliest diseases in human history - the Black Plague.
Zoe Ceballos introduces us to a member of the Domain Archaea that lives in a very extreme habitat - salt at saturating concentration (> 5 molar). Halobacterium and its obligate halophile relatives have evolved a salt-dependent lifestyle, unlike virtually all other cellular lifeforms.
There are 3-5 major groups within the Domain Archaea. One of those is called the Crenarcheota and Brayla Stokes from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course tells us about the first genome sequenced from the Crenarchaeota - Aeropyrum pernix strain K1.
What do lice, flying squirrels, and World War I have in common? That weird question is answered by Jake Lininger from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course as he introduces us to the cause of epidemic typhus - the pathogenic bacterium Rickettsia prowazekii.
In this episode from the survey of genomes, Nikkia Schady from 2019 Hiram College Genetics course and the Women’s Volleyball team will introduce us to a member of the Archaea, the 3rd domain of life not recognized until 1977.
The first group of Archaea were methanogens - microbes that produce methane as a byproduct of their metabolism. The first ever Archaea genome sequenced was from the methanogen Methanococcus jannaschii. Kritika Bhau from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course walks us through the implications of its genome.
Brad jumps in amongst the Survey of Genomes to speak to the question of “why do we need to sequence the genome of a pathogen we just want to kill?”
Brad puts the dreaded “P-word” (Prokaryote) to rest and introduces the Archaea, the 3rd domain of life only recognized as distinct in 1977.
Brad jumps back in to comment on the extreme lifestyles seen in some microbes.
Look out your window at that beautiful tree or shrub nearby. Now imagine it living in a hot springs at over 50C doing photosynthesis without oxygen as a byproduct but rather by excreting elemental sulfur. Kerry Vickers from the 2019 Hiram College Genetics course tells us about a microbial anaerobic thermophilic phototroph, Chlorobium tepidum strain TLS, that does just that.