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Tagging drugs with heavy hydrogen made as easy as flicking a light switch

Photoredox reaction simplifies metabolism studies by swapping hydrogen for deuterium or tritium Tracking isotope-labelled drugs as they pass through the body might become as easy as switching on a light thanks to a photocatalytic reaction that attaches heavy hydrogen tags to molecules. Almost every pharmaceutical compound contains hydrogen atoms. Swapping some of these for their heavier […]

The chemistry behind cannabinoids explains how CBDs are saving lives (A complex subject)

Scientists are finally beginning to uncover some of the chemical mechanisms underlying the powerful medical benefits of marijuana and its cannabinoid compounds. The breakthrough came with the discovery of the body’s endocannabinoid system, a biological system based around signaling molecules highly similar to many of the phytocannabinoid (plant-based cannabinoid) compounds found in marijuana (cannabis). Cannabinoid receptors are […]

A semi-synthetic organism that stores and retrieves increased genetic information

1, and the most general route to this goal is the creation of semi-synthetic organisms whose DNA harbours two additional letters that form a third, unnatural base pair. Previous efforts to generate such semi-synthetic organisms2 culminated in the creation of a strain of Escherichia colithat, by virtue of a nucleoside triphosphate transporter from Phaeodactylum tricornutum, imports the requisite […]

In the deep ocean, these bacteria play a key role in trapping carbo

The organisms oxidize the nitrogen compound nitrite to “fix” inorganic carbon dioxide A mysterious group of microbes may be controlling the fate of carbon in the dark depths of the world’s oceans. Nitrospinae bacteria, which use the nitrogen compound nitrite to “fix” inorganic carbon dioxide into sugars and other compounds for food and reproduction, are responsible […]