New Tool Could Help Reshape the Limits of Synthetic Biology

NYU Langone yeast geneticists report they have developed a novel tool—dubbed “the telomerator”—that could redefine the limits of synthetic biology and advance how successfully living things can be engineered or constructed in the laboratory based on an organism’s genetic, chemical base-pair structure. Synthetic biologists aim to use such “designer” microorganisms to produce novel medicines, nutrients, and biofuels. In a report in PNAS, researchers, led by Jef Boeke, PhD, a professor and director of NYULMC Institute for Systems Genetics, say the telomerator should also improve study of yeast genetics and help determine how genes and the chromosomes housing them, interact with each other. Read more…


Innovative Study Utilizing Video Games Shows Sleep Apnea May Affect Memory of Everyday Events

Researchers at NYULMC conclude people took longer to complete a 3D maze when sleep apnea disrupted the REM stage of sleep. The study, published online in Journal of Neuroscience, demonstrates through the playing of a specific video game that disruption of REM sleep as a consequence of sleep apnea impairs spatial memory in humans even when other sleep stages are intact. The research was led by Andrew Varga, MD, PhD, clinical instructor of Medicine in the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine at NYU Langone and an attending physician in NYU’s Sleep Disorders Center. Read more...