It is a gloomy, rainy day here in the Washington, DC area. It's the kind of weather that, when it goes on too long, can cause one's mood to swing to the decidedly negative side of the pendulum. As it turns out, two factors in the opening sentences of this post - cynicism and low levels of vitamin D - may play a role in developing Alzheimer's and dementia according to two recent studies.Read More
Up at 5AM: The 5AM Solutions Blog
The Wall Street Journal reported on an in interesting development in life sciences research. Silicon Valley has begun sprouting cloud-based laboratories that could lower one of the highest barriers to entry for researchers: the cost of setting up a lab.
Performing research for any disease takes hard work, but it is nearly impossible to conduct ground-breaking research and advance science in an expedient manner without a solid starting point--The specimens. The raw material for most of the good work to happen in the life sciences can likely be found in ample quantities of quality-controlled and well-catalogued specimens linked to information about the person from whom they came and their health status.
During bioinformatics engagements, many of our clients use Microsoft Excel for working with their data. Indeed, the projects often begin and end with the delivery of a spreadsheet. Although Excel is ubiquitous and has many attractive features, there are some common pitfalls. This blog post details the first of the five issues we take a look at--To dowload the full "Using Excel for Bioinformatics Data" whitepaper, featuring five common issues and some great solutions, click here.
Working in the biobanking field and observing researchers use tissue samples to help cure cancer is fascinating stuff. I see stories all the time about people who have rare diseases, and because there just isn't enough of the population with that disease to collect samples, no research gets done. Tissue samples become vital to finding the cure. I think we all want to help find a cure for cancer and the great part is that we all could help by donating our tissue samples for use in research. The not so fascinating stuff is seeing the Herculean effort it takes to actually obtain banked samples for research.