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This netcast explores the rapidly changing world of biotech, with a penchant towards getting a better understanding of who we are and where we are going. The living world will soon be a true substrate for engineering. Our world will change, and so will we. 
We bring a first hand account from the scientists that are moving us into this new technological era: the era of biotech. 

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    FiB Episode 012: The Era of Shock and Awe Proteomics

    Dr. John Bergeron describes how proteomics could revolutionize modern medicine...

    Hosts: Marc Pelletier and Leo Laporte

    Guests: Dr. John J. Bergeron is Professor and Chair of the Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology at McGill University, and former President of the Human Proteome Organization (HUPO), and founder of Caprion Proteomics

    John has just completed his tenure as president of the Human Proteome Organization (HUPO). He explains how the science of proteomics is bringing us toward a COMPLETE understanding of the human anatomy down to the molecular (protein) level. We are moving toward a new level of molecular medicine with a near atomic "atlas" of the human body. Diagnosing cancer could eventually be done using a minute sample of blood, and earlier than ever imagined, by simply looking at protein profiles. It is clear that any conversation about biotechnology must inevitably include proteomics...


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    Reader Comments (5)

    Fantastic stuff on all these podcasts. It's great to hear such experienced people explaining complex subjects so well.

    March 2, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

    Remember how about a century ago there was talk about closing the US Patent Office because just about everything had been invented? Well, FIB is illustrating how, in contrast, the horizons of medicine and medical technology are now unfathomably huge and exciting. Keep up wonderful work in keeping us informed and excited!

    Special thanks to Dr. Bergeron for his description of Proteomics and how it evolved from Genomics.

    April 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterRobert

    Protein Folding Uniqueness?

    In his excellent podcast on 'Futures in Biotech' Dr. John Bergeron described both the importance of protein molecule folding, and the enormous variety of protein manifestations that nonetheless share the same molecular sequence. But he also talked about 'minimum-energy-state' folding. 'Minimum' suggests uniqueness, which would seem to be against variety. So, do proteins routinely have multiple foldings, or is folding state not a contributor to variety of protein manifestations sharing the same amino acid sequence?

    [See same question here:]

    April 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterBob Maher

    Proteins can have several low energy states. If you were to plot the spectrum of states on a three dimensional plot, it would resemble a crater with several small "volcano shaped" peaks in the middle with calderas. If the protein energy state falls within the caldera and can't get out, it has reached a minimum, but not the lowest possible state. The proteins discussed in FiB episode 1 - those involved in signaling (hence must have at least two states (on and off) have minimums that are easy to overcome.

    Proteins involved protein folding disease, like b-amyloid or prions (Alzheimer's and Mad Cow), have energy states that are very difficult to reverse, that are in "deep calderas"

    Hope these analogies make sense...

    Also molecular chaperones can help proteins move around in the crater...

    April 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMarc Pelletier

    And YES, protein folding is a contributor to protein manifestations. Proteins can have the same exact amino acid sequene and in one specific folding state be lethal to the individual, while in another, harmless...

    April 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMarc Pelletier

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