CRISPR-Cas9 technology and personalized medicine: What about Canada?

by Rick Gierczak, guest contributor CRISPR-Cas9 technology was accidentally discovered in the 1980s when scientists were researching how bacteria defend themselves against viral infection. While studying bacterial DNA called clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR), they identified additional CRISPR-associated (Cas) protein molecules. Together, CRISPR and one of those protein molecules, termed Cas9, can locate […]

Continue reading


A mathematical picture of the genome

tarsier

By Malgosia Ip, Mathematics and Statistics Editor Meet the Philippine tarsier: a tiny primate with giant eyes that’s native to the Philippine archipelago. Despite its small size, this little fella has been the subject of controversy for over a century—is it more closely related to the lemur (a so-called “wet-nosed” primate) or to apes and […]

Continue reading


Is extinction really forever?

mammoth-skeleton_Wilhelm-Tilesius

By Robert Gooding-Townsend, Science in Society co-editor Can biotechnology bring back extinct species? If it can, should it? In her new book Rise of the Necrofauna, Britt Wray chronicles the nascent movement to bring back extinct species. She calls these resurrected creatures “necrofauna”, conjuring images of undead mammoths, passenger pigeons, and more. As compelling as the […]

Continue reading


CRISPR-Cas9: how the quest for better cheese revolutionized biological research

By Sunitha Chari, Biology and Life Sciences Co-editor   To understand the story of CRISPR-Cas9, you need to appreciate the significance of accidental discoveries in science. Imagine a world where Alexander Fleming did not discover a fungus capable of killing the bacteria on his forgotten bacterial plate. Or, imagine a world where Wilhelm Röngten did […]

Continue reading


8 Canadian Chemists Who Reshaped How We See Our World

chemistry nobel

by Mika McKinnon, Editorial Manager Eight Canadians changed the path of chemistry, winning Nobel Prizes for their innovative research. These are their discoveries, from exploring ultimate chill to probing the basic mechanics of reactions. Since the first Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded in 1901, 171 people have shared 107 prizes. Only eight of those prizes […]

Continue reading