General microbiology and science

Some new bioinformatic tools,  dengue response and vaccines, and host response and transcriptomics.

Host response and gene expression

Single-cell RNA-seq: advances and future challenges – Antoine-Emmanuel Saliba – Nucleic Acids Research

“Different single-cell RNA-seq protocols have been introduced and are reviewed here—each one with its own strengths and current limitations.”

Corset: enabling differential gene expression analysis for de novo assembled transcriptomes – Nadia M Davidson and Alicia Oshlack – Genome Biology

“Here we present Corset, a method that hierarchically clusters contigs using shared reads and expression, then summarizes read counts to clusters, ready for statistical testing. Using a range of metrics, we demonstrate that Corset out-performs alternative methods.”


Suffix tree searcher: exploration of common substrings in large DNA sequence sets
David Minkley – BMC Research Notes

“The program accommodates very large numbers of very large sequences, with aggregate size reaching tens of billions of nucleotides. The program makes use of pre-sorted persistent “building blocks” to reduce the time required to construct new trees.”

SnipViz: a compact and lightweight web site widget for display and dissemination of multiple versions of gene and protein sequences – Daniel Jaschob – BMC Research Notes

“SnipViz is a client-side software tool designed to disseminate multiple versions of related gene and protein sequences on web sites. SnipViz has a space-efficient, interactive, and dynamic interface for navigating, analyzing and visualizing sequence data.”



Dengue vaccine trial poses public health quandary – Dennis Normile – Science


“The vaccine, developed by Sanofi Pasteur, proved safe, had an overall efficacy rate of 56.5%, and reduced cases of severe disease by 88.5%. But it had limited efficacy against dengue 2, one of four dengue virus serotypes in circulation.”

Predictors of hospital stay and mortality in dengue virus infection-experience from Aga Khan University Hospital Pakistan – Muhammad Abdul Khalil – BMC Research Notes

“Increasing age, coagulopathy and acute kidney injury in patients with DVI is associated with increased hospital stay.”



Science and publishing

A crisis of trust – Pubpeer

“As PubPeer developed, and especially once we enabled anonymous posting, we were shocked at the number of comments pointing out much more fundamental problems in papers, involving very questionable research practices and rather obvious misconduct. “

Dr. Bik’s Picks

Note to Science: The GOP’s Just Not That That Into You – Jeffrey Kluger – Time

“If the Speaker, by his own admission, isn’t qualified to debate climate change, fine, he’s excused from the conversation—and he should be expected not to offer further opinion on the matter. “

The first Science Hack Day in China – Ariel Waldman – BoingBoing

“Over the course of the weekend in a Shanghai incubator space, kids, parents, scientists, artists and technologists joined forces to play with science and prototype ideas. “

Exclusive: Naked Mole Rat Filled With Regret Over Evolutionary Choices – The Allium

“In an exclusive interview with The Allium, the Naked Mole Rat has revealed its regret at some of the evolutionary choices it has made, in particular the whole nakedness and the teeth.”



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