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Sep 01, 2008 (Vol. 28, No. 15)

Oralgen Databases

  • Excellent coverage of topic
  • None
There are “good” bacteria and there are “bad” bacteria. Oralgen Databases is a site that focuses on the latter and throws viruses in, to boot. The opening page says that the scope of the site “includes molecular information pertaining to oral pathogens” and this pretty much sums it up, though it is a bit modest. For example, besides basic DNA/protein sequence info (complete with search functions), the site also includes metabolic pathway info for the various organisms, info on ABC transporters (ATP binding proteins), non-coding small RNAs, insertion sequence elements, and predictions of cellular locations. Twelve bacterial strains are comprehensively covered and ten more are on the way. Viruses featured on the site include four different Herpes variants and a pseudorabies one, as well. A site that bulldozes an enormous path through the mouth, Oralgen Databases is a must for anyone interested in molecular perspectives of oral health.
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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.

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