By Mark Zimmer
Today big, game-changing ideas are less common. New and improved techniques are the driving force behind modern scientific research and discoveries. They allow scientists – including chemists like me – to do our experiments faster than before, and they shine light on areas of science hidden to our predecessors.
Three cutting-edge techniques – the gene-editing tool CRISPR, fluorescent proteins and optogenetics – were all inspired by nature. Biomolecular tools that have worked for bacteria, jellyfish and algae for millions of years are now being used in medicine and biological research. Directly or indirectly, they will change the lives of everyday people. Read more …
Photo: Osamu Shimomura, right, with his wife, Akemi, and their children collecting jellyfish at Friday Harbor in the early 1960s. Shimomura was co-recipient of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for the discovery of Green Fluorescent Protein. Photo courtesy of Sachi Shimomura.