Category Archives: Genomics

The Phrase That Makes Bioinformaticians Grind Their Teeth: Another Short-Read Genome Assembler

Michael Barton laments the state of bioinformatics software: Grants are harder and harder to obtain, yet we fund the current attrition of moving bioinformatics software forward one reinvention at a time. Where else is it acceptable to reinvent a tool … Continue reading

Posted in Bioinformatics, Genomics | Leave a comment

Forget Genomics, Just Do the Genetics That We Know How to Do: The Rape Kit Edition

As genomics becomes cheaper and more accessible, the torrent of articles debating and discussing its effects on human health will only increase. My contribution to this genre is to argue that microbial genomics is also critical, and, in the short … Continue reading

Posted in Funding, Genetics, Genomics, Rape

There Is a Microbial Genomics Market and It Is Not a ‘Niche’

Or it shoudn’t be. Last week, a good article summarizing the status of Pacific Biosciences (‘PacBio’) made the rounds in science/genomics bloggysphere–this is a pretty good summary of what PacBio can currently do (boldface mine): Turns out, PacBio didn’t die. … Continue reading

Posted in Genomics | 1 Comment

Sequencing Has Always Been Undemocratic

We just never realized it, thanks to hidden subsidies. Mick Watson asks: It seems such a long time ago (in reality: 5 years) that many people hailed next-generation sequencing as the “democratization” of sequencing. The heart of the idea was … Continue reading

Posted in Genomics | 1 Comment

Some (Hopefully) Final Thoughts on 23andMe

Because the third time is a charm, here are some additional thoughts on the 23andMe story (my first two takes are here and here; David Dobbs has a comprehensive roundup here): 1) If we all had read the relevant literature … Continue reading

Posted in Bidness, Genomics | 2 Comments

Translating Basic Research Tools Into Diagnostics

Because we like to snark around here, let’s snark first: Some of the same people who react with horror when parents, who know they’re being irresponsible, still demand an antibiotic to treat a childhood ear infection are the same people … Continue reading

Posted in Genomics, Public Health | 1 Comment

23andMe Needs Better Fan Boys

Because they’re just not getting it (boldface mine): We, the healthcare consumers of America, demand that we maintain access to genomics testing services like 23andMe’s, which serve as a 100% privately purchased complement to government-regulated healthcare. The FDA grossly overstates … Continue reading

Posted in Fucking Morons, Genomics

Some Thoughts on the FDA Action Against

So the sciency internets are all abuzz about yesterday’s warning letter issued by the FDA to the genetic testing company 23andMe. To me, it’s pretty clear-cut, and, in fact, I thought something like this would happen, so it doesn’t come … Continue reading

Posted in Bidness, Fucking Morons, Genomics | 11 Comments

Sure, The Smithsonian Might Be Shutdown, But That’s No Reason You Can’t See the Genomics Exhibit

So what if you can’t get into the Smithsonian? Cuz I take pictures so you don’t have to. The Natural History Museum has a temporary exhibit, “Genome: Unlocking Life’s Code” that’s pretty good. If you’re in the genomics biz, it … Continue reading

Posted in Cancer, Genomics, Microbiology, Microbiome, Museums etc.

Genomics on the Subway? (Genomicists of the World Unite! You Have Only Your Flow Cells to Lose!)

No, this isn’t some wacky microbiome study. I recently observed this at Cambridge’s Kendall Station: I especially like the pseudo-populist angle. Though I have a better slogan: “E-llumina is E-litist!” Or maybe: Sequencing For All! Genomicists of the World You … Continue reading

Posted in Bullshit As a Load Bearing Structure, Genomics, Propaganda | 1 Comment