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Oct 15, 2011 (Vol. 31, No. 18)

Sequilab Research Portal

URL:www.sequilab.org
  • Great site design, centralized data-analysis resources
  • Weak help section

In a world where research progress occurs in baby steps, along come the people behind the Sequilab Research Portal, boldly proclaiming that their website is an entire leap forward for genetics researchers. Now I’m no expert on the difference between steps and leaps of progress, but I can say that the Sequilab Research Portal is pretty nifty. Beautifully designed (and with the tools to back up the eye candy), this site allows researchers to create customized toolbars consisting of tools like DNA BLAST, enzyme-cutting resources, and primer-design tools. Registration is free and provides access to not only the many analysis tools on the site, but also to centralized job postings, recent publications, and a conference calendar. One of the nicest features of the site is that researchers can save their projects in one central location, thereby eliminating the need to redo that BLAST search yet again because you forgot where you saved the results file. (But who has ever done that...?)

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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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