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Gordon Wells
Worked at Emory University
Lives in Stellenbosch
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Gordon Wells

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"Adaptation without Darwinian selection" #fw #fb https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e91D5UAz-f4
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Gordon Wells

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The fundamental philosophical dilemma of chemistry #fb #fw 
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Gordon Wells

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Erik Wernquist >> Neill Blomkamp https://vimeo.com/132183032 #fw  #fb 
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Neal Stephenson and friends get down to brass tacks wrt building a 20 km steel tower https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BU7antoxCzg #fb   #fw  
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This looks better than Petridish, the tiered reward system of Kickstarter doesn't make sense here #fb   #fw  

https://experiment.com/projects/sequencing-the-black-rhinoceros-genome?s=home
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Gordon Wells

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"Magna Carta, properly so-called, was a deeply conservative document. It sought to enforce on the King conventions which were profoundly traditional, and obligations which he and his predecessors had acknowledged for more than a century. There are no high-flown declarations of principle. No truths are held to be self-evident. Indeed, there are hardly any provisions that can be called constitutional at all."

Magna Carta then and now
Address to the Friends of the British Library
Lord Sumption
9 March 2015

https://www.supremecourt.uk/docs/speech-150309.pdf
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#fw  #fb
You could call it the magical mystery chord. The opening clang of the Beatles' 1964 hit, 'A Hard Day's Night,' is one of the most famous and distinctive sounds in rock and roll history, and yet for a long time no one could quite figure out what it was.
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Happy to report that OSM's voice nav also says street names in SA #fw #fb https://www.openstreetmap.org/relation/1252792
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Ha ha! I think it's gotten better in CT though, it drove me crazy a few back having to look for street names on the floor.

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"Books are much better at being books, you can drop them" Unlike my Kobo :( #fb  #fw

http://longnow.org/seminars/02015/jun/09/how-stories-last/
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Gordon Wells

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George Church is formidable. Getting Big Data right #fb  #fw 
 
George Church: The Powerhouse on the Latest Molecular Biology Technology
One hour talk plus Q&A. Main takeaway points include:

➜ Going from painstakingly aiming for 1x coverage of human genome sequencing to routinely doing 50x coverage of human genome sequencing and 1000x bacterial genome sequencing . . . just for kicks.

➜ Going from painstakingly aiming for 10^-1 to 10^-2 error rates in genome sequencing to routine 10^-9 error rates.

➜ Breaking genome sequencing monopolies with shifts in technology and aiming for MinION nanopore + protein motor sequencing architectures for the next disruption measuring pico-Amperes per base pair. 

➜ Going from 30x coverage of a human genome sequence taking up 9 Terabytes of data, down to 2.5 Megabytes of data per human genome sequence . . . as compared to the human reference genome. That's right, the relative information content of your genome is 2.5MB. Our whole species population is 2 Petabytes. 

➜ Using CRIPSR in conjunction with human organoids on microfluidic chips and vastly exceeding the sophistication of conventional tissue culture models by including mechanical stressors for example. 

➜ Using CRISPR to quickly identify the single base pairs that are responsible for particular genetic disorders, and restoring the disease phenotype to healthy by adding correctly coded mRNAs.

➜ Sequencing entire genomes to identify off-target modifications caused by unintentional CRISPR edits, and trying to avoid any modification of tumour suppressor genes or activating oncogenes. 

➜ State of the art for CRISPR off-target modification is zero in 3x10^14 base pairs, possibly higher, and this only with off-the-shelf CRISPR: paired nickases etc are better CRISPRs that result in much better specificity, many orders of magnitude more specific. 

➜ Aging as the universal disease. Co-opting common alleles from supercentenarians. Co-opting parabiosis findings such as GDF11 that reverses many age-related problems. Influencing mitochondrial homeostasis with small molecules such as nicotinamide or using CRISPR to induce equivalently useful epigenetic changes. Dialing changes and gene expression up and down to 47 fold greater or less. 

➜ Out-of-date CRISPR technology is anything greater than 3 months old: innovating at a tremendous rate. 

➜ Multiple transcriptional activation domains bound to dead CRISPR (CRISPR that binds DNA but doesn't cleave DNA) can result in 20,000-fold upregulation of gene activity, e.g. for the human titan gene that is 100,000 base pairs long and almost impossible to deliver via gene therapy. 

➜ Examining asymmetric distribution of individual proteins and RNAs via subcellular localisation of these biomolecules using confocal multi-layer imaging and expansion microscopy and getting down to 10nm imaging resolution of 3D cells. 

#crispr   #syntheticbiology   #genomics  
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Work
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Employment
  • Emory University
    Post Doc, Chemistry Dept., 2011 - 2013
  • University of Pretoria
    Post Doc, Biochemistry Dept. Malaria Research Group, 2010 - 2011
  • Meraka Institute, CSIR
    Scientific Officer, HPC Research Group, 2008 - 2010
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Stellenbosch
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Pretoria - Decatur - Hamburg
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