Michio Kaku on Time Travel

April 16th, 2009

The third installment of an hour long interview between Dr. Kiki Sanford and Dr. Michio Kaku. Dr. Kaku talks about time travel.

Michio’s book is out now as a paperback. Here’s a link to buy the book on Amazon.

Distributed by Tubemogul.

Michio Kaku’s Favorite Topic

April 9th, 2009

Part two in a series of excerpts from Dr. Kiki’s interview with Dr. Michio Kaku in which he discussed his favorite topic from The Physics of the Impossible. Distributed by Tubemogul.

Michio’s book is out now as a paperback. I honestly had no idea that my timing of these video interviews would match so well. But, since it did, here’s a link to buy the book on Amazon.  

Making Stem Cells Virus-Free

March 26th, 2009

A report out today from the University of Wisconsin – Madison suggests that the first virus-free human induced pluripotent stem cells have been created. This is significant in the search for alternatives to embryonic stem cells, which have the ability to become any cell type.

To date, one major stumbling block to the use of adult stem cells induced to be pluripotent has been the use of viral vectors. Foreign genetic material from the viral vectors can integrate itself into the host cell DNA and have negative consequences on cell processes and experimental results.

From the press releaese:

The new work was accomplished using a plasmid, a circle of DNA, and cells from the foreskins of newborns. “The plasmids carry all the needed transgenes, but don’t integrate into the host DNA, they just float around as episomes” in the cell, Thomson says.

The plasmids replicate, but they do so somewhat inefficiently, Thomson explains, so that after they perform the job of reprogramming, they can subsequently be weeded out, leaving the induced cells free of any exotic genetic material. “Once the transgenes have done their job and are no longer needed, one can merely recover induced pluripotent stem cells that have lost their episomes.”

The resulting cells, says Thomson, are remarkably similar to embryonic stem cells and show the same capacity to proliferate indefinitely in culture and diversify into all the cell types of the human body.

The fact that these induced cells are so similar to embryonic cells suggests that the research is on the right track. However, there are several possible methods of reprogramming adult cells under investigation. Another method might turn out to be more efficient or successful at reaching the end goal of turning back the clock on adult cells.

I am waiting for the press releases to fill my inbox suggesting that science has solved all the problems with adult stem cell research, and that we no longer need embryonic stem cells. This is one more step in the process of understanding how our cells work, but it by no means has answered all the questions.

Dr. Kiki’s Flame Tube

February 25th, 2009

I love my flame tube. Distributed by Tubemogul.

There is something primal about watching flames jump to the sound of music.

The Science Word 08_12_20

February 2nd, 2009
A quick review of some interesting research involving cell phones by Dr. Kiki Sanford. Distributed by Tubemogul.

The Science Word 08_12_18

January 15th, 2009
Dr. Kiki briefly runs through a few of the more interesting recent science news stories to hit the presses. Distributed by Tubemogul.

The Science Word 08_12_02

December 4th, 2008
Dr. Kiki Sanford talks about recent scientific work in HIV research, robotics, and plastic lab equipment in this episode of The Science Word. Distributed by Tubemogul.

The Science Word 08_11_11

November 20th, 2008
A brief summary of some interesting science news by Dr. Kiki. The topic of the day is genetics. Distributed by Tubemogul.

The Science Word 08_10_04

November 7th, 2008
Brief summaries of science news brought to you by Dr. Kiki Sanford. Distributed by Tubemogul.

Science Word 08_09_27

October 29th, 2008
Dr. Kiki dishes up some tasty science morsels for you to chew on a bit. Distributed by Tubemogul.