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Mar 15, 2005 (Vol. 25, No. 6)


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Two young scientists working at The Netherlands Cancer Institute back in the 1990s were such Mac fanatics that they were given the nicknames of Mek and Tosj (a Dutch pronunciation of Macintosh). Fanaticism gave way to creativity and today the two young scientists are the proud creators of four Mac programs in the last three years: LabAssistant (experimental organizer), EnzymeX (restriction enzyme tool), iRNAi (design of oligonucleotides for use in RNA Interference), and 4Peaks (visualization function for DNA sequences, along with BLAST searches). While not by any means comprehensive in nature, the tools are useful in the lab environment and, best of all, free.
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*The opinions expressed are solely those of the author(s) and should not be construed as reflecting the viewpoints of the publisher, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., the publishing house, or employees and affiliates thereof.

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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

Do you agree that ecstasy should be studied for its potential therapeutic benefits?

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