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Rxivist combines biology preprints from bioRxiv and medRxiv with data from Twitter to help you find the papers being discussed in your field. Currently indexing 212,235 papers from 844,985 authors.

Most downloaded biology preprints, all time

in category bioengineering

4,666 results found. For more information, click each entry to expand.

1: Endonuclease fingerprint indicates a synthetic origin of SARS-CoV-2
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Posted 20 Oct 2022

Endonuclease fingerprint indicates a synthetic origin of SARS-CoV-2
72,022 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Valentin Bruttel, Alex Washburne, Antonius VanDongen

To prevent future pandemics, it is important that we understand whether SARS-CoV-2 spilled over directly from animals to people, or indirectly in a laboratory accident. The genome of SARS-COV-2 contains a peculiar pattern of unique restriction endonuclease recognition sites allowing efficient dis- and re-assembly of the viral genome characteristic of synthetic viruses. Here, we report the likelihood of observing such a pattern in coronaviruses with no history of bioengineering. We find that SARS-CoV-2 is an anomaly, more likely a product of synthetic genome assembly than natural evolution. The restriction map of SARS-CoV-2 is consistent with many previously reported synthetic coronavirus genomes, meets all the criteria required for an efficient reverse genetic system, differs from closest relatives by a significantly higher rate of synonymous mutations in these synthetic-looking recognitions sites, and has a synthetic fingerprint unlikely to have evolved from its close relatives. We report a high likelihood that SARS-CoV-2 may have originated as an infectious clone assembled in vitro.

2: Paperfuge: An ultra-low cost, hand-powered centrifuge inspired by the mechanics of a whirligig toy
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Posted 30 Aug 2016

Paperfuge: An ultra-low cost, hand-powered centrifuge inspired by the mechanics of a whirligig toy
33,453 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

M. Saad Bhamla, Brandon Benson, Chew Chai, Georgios Katsikis, Aanchal Johri, Manu Prakash

Sample preparation, including separation of plasma from whole blood or isolation of parasites, is an unmet challenge in many point of care (POC) diagnostics and requires centrifugation as the first key step. From the context of global health applications, commercial centrifuges are expensive, bulky and electricity-powered, leading to a critical bottle-neck in the development of decentralized, electricity-free POC diagnostic devices. By uncovering the fundamental mechanics of an ancient whirligig toy (3300 B.C.E), we design an ultra-low cost (20 cents), light-weight (2 g), human-powered centrifuge that is made out of paper ("paperfuge"). To push the operating limits of this unconventional centrifuge, we present an experimentally-validated theoretical model that describes the paperfuge as a non-linear, non-conservative oscillator system. We use this model to inform our design process, achieving speeds of 125,000 rpm and equivalent centrifugal forces of 30,000 g, with theoretical limits predicting one million rpm. We harness these speeds to separate pure plasma in less than 1.5 minutes and isolate malaria parasites in 15 minutes from whole human blood. By expanding the materials used, we implement centrifugal microfluidics using PDMS, plastic and 3D-printed devices, ultimately opening up new opportunities for electricity-free POC diagnostics, especially in resource-poor settings.

3: Drag-and-drop genome insertion without DNA cleavage with CRISPR-directed integrases
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Posted 01 Nov 2021

Drag-and-drop genome insertion without DNA cleavage with CRISPR-directed integrases
21,783 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Eleonora I. Ioannidi, Matthew T. N. Yarnall, Cian Schmitt-Ulms, Rohan N. Krajeski, Justin Lim, Lukas Villiger, Wenyuan Zhou, Kaiyi Jiang, Nathaniel Roberts, Liyang Zhang, Christopher A. Vakulskas, John A Walker, Anastasia P Kadina, Adrianna E. Zepeda, Kevin Holden, Jonathan S Gootenberg, Omar O Abudayyeh

Programmable and multiplexed genome integration of large, diverse DNA cargo independent of DNA repair remains an unsolved challenge of genome editing. Current gene integration approaches require double-strand breaks that evoke DNA damage responses and rely on repair pathways that are inactive in terminally differentiated cells. Furthermore, CRISPR-based approaches that bypass double stranded breaks, such as Prime editing, are limited to modification or insertion of short sequences. We present Programmable Addition via Site-specific Targeting Elements, or PASTE, which achieves efficient and versatile gene integration at diverse loci by directing insertion with a CRISPR-Cas9 nickase fused to both a reverse transcriptase and serine integrase. Without generating double stranded breaks, we demonstrate integration of sequences as large as ~36 kb with rates between 10-50% at multiple genomic loci across three human cell lines, primary T cells, and quiescent non-dividing primary human hepatocytes. To further improve PASTE, we discover thousands of novel serine integrases and cognate attachment sites from metagenomes and engineer active orthologs for high-efficiency integration using PASTE. We apply PASTE to fluorescent tagging of proteins, integration of therapeutically relevant genes, and production and secretion of transgenes. Leveraging the orthogonality of serine integrases, we engineer PASTE for multiplexed gene integration, simultaneously integrating three different genes at three genomic loci. PASTE has editing efficiencies comparable to or better than those of homology directed repair or non-homologous end joining based integration, with activity in non-dividing cells and fewer detectable off-target events. For therapeutic applications, PASTE can be delivered as mRNA with synthetically modified guides to programmably direct insertion of DNA templates carried by AAV or adenoviral vectors. PASTE expands the capabilities of genome editing via drag-and-drop gene integration, offering a platform with wide applicability for research, cell engineering, and gene therapy.

4: Investigation of ACE2 N-terminal fragments binding to SARS-CoV-2 Spike RBD
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Posted 20 Mar 2020

Investigation of ACE2 N-terminal fragments binding to SARS-CoV-2 Spike RBD
20,829 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Genwei Zhang, Sebastian Pomplun, A. R. Loftis, X. Tan, A. Loas, Bradley L. Pentelute

Coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) is an emerging global health crisis. With over 7 million confirmed cases to date, this pandemic continues to expand, spurring research to discover vaccines and therapies. SARS-CoV-2 is the novel coronavirus responsible for this disease. It initiates entry into human cells by binding to angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) via the receptor binding domain (RBD) of its spike protein (S). Disrupting the SARS-CoV-2-RBD binding to ACE2 with designer drugs has the potential to inhibit the virus from entering human cells, presenting a new modality for therapeutic intervention. Peptide-based binders are an attractive solution to inhibit the RBD-ACE2 interaction by adequately covering the extended protein contact interface. Using molecular dynamics simulations based on the recently solved cryo-EM structure of ACE2 in complex with SARS-CoV-2-RBD, we observed that the ACE2 peptidase domain (PD) α1 helix is important for binding SARS-CoV-2-RBD. Using automated fast-flow peptide synthesis, we chemically synthesized a 23-mer peptide fragment of the ACE2 PD α1 helix (SBP1) composed entirely of proteinogenic amino acids. Chemical synthesis of SBP1 was complete in 1.5 hours, and after work up and isolation >20 milligrams of pure material was obtained. Bio-layer interferometry (BLI) revealed that SBP1 associates with micromolar affinity to insect-derived SARS-CoV-2-RBD protein obtained from Sino Biological. Association of SBP1 was not observed to an appreciable extent to HEK cell-expressed SARS-CoV-2-RBD proteins and insect-derived variants acquired from other vendors. Moreover, competitive BLI assays showed SBP1 does not outcompete ACE2 binding to Sino Biological insect-derived SARS-CoV-2-RBD. Further investigations are ongoing to gain insight into the molecular and structural determinants of the variable binding behavior to different SARS-CoV-2-RBD protein variants. ### Competing Interest Statement Bradley L. Pentelute is a co-founder of Resolute Bio and Amide Technologies.

5: Directed evolution of TurboID for efficient proximity labeling in living cells and organisms
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Posted 02 Oct 2017

Directed evolution of TurboID for efficient proximity labeling in living cells and organisms
17,733 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Tess C Branon, Justin A Bosch, Ariana D Sanchez, Namrata D. Udeshi, Tanya Svinkina, Steven A Carr, Jessica Feldman, Norbert Perrimon, Alice Y Ting

Protein interaction networks and protein compartmentation underlie every signaling process and regulatory mechanism in cells. Recently, proximity labeling (PL) has emerged as a new approach to study the spatial and interaction characteristics of proteins in living cells. However, the two enzymes commonly used for PL come with tradeoffs: BioID is slow, requiring tagging times of 18-24 hours, while APEX peroxidase uses substrates that have limited cell permeability and high toxicity. To address these problems, we used yeast display-based directed evolution to engineer two mutants of biotin ligase, TurboID and miniTurbo, with much greater catalytic efficiency than BioID, and the ability to carry out PL in cells in much shorter time windows (as little as 10 minutes) with non-toxic and easily deliverable biotin. In addition to shortening PL time by 100-fold and increasing PL yield in cell culture, TurboID enabled biotin-based PL in new settings, including yeast, Drosophila, and C. elegans.

6: Development of CRISPR as a prophylactic strategy to combat novel coronavirus and influenza
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Posted 14 Mar 2020

Development of CRISPR as a prophylactic strategy to combat novel coronavirus and influenza
15,287 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Timothy R. Abbott, Girija Dhamdhere, Yanxia Liu, Xueqiu Lin, Laine Goudy, Leiping Zeng, Augustine Chemparathy, Stephen Chmura, Nicholas S Heaton, Robert Debs, Tara Pande, Drew Endy, Marie La Russa, David B Lewis, Lei S Qi

The outbreak of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has infected more than 100,000 people worldwide with over 3,000 deaths since December 2019. There is no cure for COVID-19 and the vaccine development is estimated to require 12-18 months. Here we demonstrate a CRISPR-Cas13-based strategy, PAC-MAN (Prophylactic Antiviral CRISPR in huMAN cells), for viral inhibition that can effectively degrade SARS-CoV-2 sequences and live influenza A virus (IAV) genome in human lung epithelial cells. We designed and screened a group of CRISPR RNAs (crRNAs) targeting conserved viral regions and identified functional crRNAs for cleaving SARS-CoV-2. The approach is effective in reducing respiratory cell viral replication for H1N1 IAV. Our bioinformatic analysis showed a group of only six crRNAs can target more than 90% of all coronaviruses. The PAC-MAN approach is potentially a rapidly implementable pan-coronavirus strategy to deal with emerging pandemic strains.

7: Potent neutralization of 2019 novel coronavirus by recombinant ACE2-Ig
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Posted 02 Feb 2020

Potent neutralization of 2019 novel coronavirus by recombinant ACE2-Ig
12,612 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Changhai Lei, Wenyan Fu, Kewen Qian, Tian Li, Sheng Zhang, Min Ding, Shi Hu

2019-nCoV, which is a novel coronavirus emerged in Wuhan, China, at the end of 2019, has caused at least infected 11,844 as of Feb 1, 2020. However, there is no specific antiviral treatment or vaccine currently. Very recently report had suggested that novel CoV would use the same cell entry receptor, ACE2, as the SARS-CoV. In this report, we generated a novel recombinant protein by connecting the extracellular domain of human ACE2 to the Fc region of the human immunoglobulin IgG1. An ACE2 mutant with low catalytic activity was also used in the study. The fusion proteins were then characterized. Both fusion proteins has high affinity binding to the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV and 2019-nCoV and exerted desired pharmacological properties. Moreover, fusion proteins potently neutralized SARS-CoV and 2019-nCoV in vitro. As these fusion proteins exhibit cross-reactivity against coronaviruses, they could have potential applications for diagnosis, prophylaxis, and treatment of 2019-nCoV.

8: Octopi: Open configurable high-throughput imaging platform for infectious disease diagnosis in the field
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Posted 27 Jun 2019

Octopi: Open configurable high-throughput imaging platform for infectious disease diagnosis in the field
12,187 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Hongquan Li, Hazel Soto-Montoya, Maxime Voisin, Lucas Fuentes Valenzuela, Manu Prakash

Access to quantitative, robust, yet affordable diagnostic tools is necessary to reduce global infectious disease burden. Manual microscopy has served as a bedrock for diagnostics with wide adaptability, although at a cost of tedious labor and human errors. Automated robotic microscopes are poised to enable a new era of smart field microscopy but current platforms remain cost prohibitive and largely inflexible, especially for resource poor and field settings. Here we present Octopi, a low-cost ($250-$500) and reconfigurable autonomous microscopy platform capable of automated slide scanning and correlated bright-field and fluorescence imaging. Being highly modular, it also provides a framework for new disease-specific modules to be developed. We demonstrate the power of the platform by applying it to automated detection of malaria parasites in blood smears. Specifically, we discovered a spectral shift on the order of 10 nm for DAPI-stained Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites. This shift allowed us to detect the parasites with a low magnification (equivalent to 10x) large field of view (2.56 mm^2) module. Combined with automated slide scanning, real time computer vision and machine learning-based classification, Octopi is able to screen more than 1.5 million red blood cells per minute for parasitemia quantification, with estimated diagnostic sensitivity and specificity exceeding 90% at parasitemia of 50/ul and 100% for parasitemia higher than 150/μl. With different modules, we further showed imaging of tissue slice and sputum sample on the platform. With roughly two orders of magnitude in cost reduction, Octopi opens up the possibility of a large robotic microscope network for improved disease diagnosis while providing an avenue for collective efforts for development of modular instruments.

9: DNA microscopy: Optics-free spatio-genetic imaging by a stand-alone chemical reaction
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Posted 19 Nov 2018

DNA microscopy: Optics-free spatio-genetic imaging by a stand-alone chemical reaction
9,525 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Joshua A. Weinstein, Aviv Regev, Feng Zhang

Analyzing the spatial organization of molecules in cells and tissues is a cornerstone of biological research and clinical practice. However, despite enormous progress in profiling the molecular constituents of cells, spatially mapping these constituents remains a disjointed and machinery-intensive process, relying on either light microscopy or direct physical registration and capture. Here, we demonstrate DNA microscopy, a new imaging modality for scalable, optics-free mapping of relative biomolecule positions. In DNA microscopy of transcripts, transcript molecules are tagged in situ with randomized nucleotides, labeling each molecule uniquely. A second in situ reaction then amplifies the tagged molecules, concatenates the resulting copies, and adds new randomized nucleotides to uniquely label each concatenation event. An algorithm decodes molecular proximities from these concatenated sequences, and infers physical images of the original transcripts at cellular resolution. Because its imaging power derives entirely from diffusive molecular dynamics, DNA microscopy constitutes a chemically encoded microscopy system.

10: Far-UVC light: A new tool to control the spread of airborne-mediated microbial diseases
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Posted 28 Dec 2017

Far-UVC light: A new tool to control the spread of airborne-mediated microbial diseases
8,334 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

David Welch, Manuela Buonanno, Veljko Grilj, Igor Shuryak, Connor Crickmore, Alan W Bigelow, Gerhard Randers-Pehrson, Gary W Johnson, David J Brenner

Airborne-mediated microbial diseases such as influenza and tuberculosis represent major public health challenges. A direct approach to prevent airborne transmission is inactivation of airborne pathogens, and the airborne antimicrobial potential of UVC ultraviolet light has long been established; however, its widespread use in public settings is limited because conventional UVC light sources are both carcinogenic and cataractogenic. By contrast, we have previously shown that far-UVC light (207-222 nm) efficiently kills bacteria without harm to exposed mammalian skin. This is because, due to its strong absorbance in biological materials, far-UVC light cannot penetrate even the outer (non living) layers of human skin or eye; however, because bacteria and viruses are of micrometer or smaller dimensions, far-UVC can penetrate and inactivate them. We show for the first time that far-UVC efficiently kills airborne aerosolized viruses, a very low dose of 2 mJ/cm2 of 222-nm light inactivating >95% of aerosolized H1N1 influenza virus. Continuous very low dose-rate far-UVC light in indoor public locations is a promising, safe and inexpensive tool to reduce the spread of airborne-mediated microbial diseases.

11: De novo protein design by deep network hallucination
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Posted 23 Jul 2020

De novo protein design by deep network hallucination
7,945 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Ivan Anishchenko, Tamuka M. Chidyausiku, Sergey Ovchinnikov, Sam Pellock, David Baker

There has been considerable recent progress in protein structure prediction using deep neural networks to infer distance constraints from amino acid residue co-evolution. We investigated whether the information captured by such networks is sufficiently rich to generate new folded proteins with sequences unrelated to those of the naturally occurring proteins used in training the models. We generated random amino acid sequences, and input them into the trRosetta structure prediction network to predict starting distance maps, which as expected are quite featureless. We then carried out Monte Carlo sampling in amino acid sequence space, optimizing the contrast (KL-divergence) between the distance distributions predicted by the network and the background distribution. Optimization from different random starting points resulted in a wide range of proteins with diverse sequences and all alpha, all beta sheet, and mixed alpha-beta structures. We obtained synthetic genes encoding 129 of these network hallucinated sequences, expressed and purified the proteins in E coli, and found that 27 folded to monomeric stable structures with circular dichroism spectra consistent with the hallucinated structures. Thus deep networks trained to predict native protein structures from their sequences can be inverted to design new proteins, and such networks and methods should contribute, alongside traditional physically based models, to the de novo design of proteins with new functions. ### Competing Interest Statement The authors have declared no competing interest.

12: Large-scale discovery of recombinases for integrating DNA into the human genome
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Posted 06 Nov 2021

Large-scale discovery of recombinases for integrating DNA into the human genome
7,903 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Matthew G. Durrant, Alison Fanton, Josh Tycko, Michaela Hinks, Sita Chandrasekaran, Nicholas T Perry, Julia Schaepe, Peter P Du, Peter Lotfy, Michael C Bassik, Lacramioara Bintu, Ami S Bhatt, Patrick D. Hsu

Recent microbial genome sequencing efforts have revealed a vast reservoir of mobile genetic elements containing integrases that could be useful genome engineering tools. Large serine recombinases (LSRs), such as Bxb1 and PhiC31, are bacteriophage-encoded integrases that can facilitate the insertion of phage DNA into bacterial genomes. However, only a few LSRs have been previously characterized and they have limited efficiency in human cells. Here, we developed a systematic computational discovery workflow that searches across the bacterial tree of life to expand the diversity of known LSRs and their cognate DNA attachment sites by >100-fold. We validated this approach via experimental characterization of LSRs, leading to three classes of LSRs distinguished from one another by their efficiency and specificity. We identify landing pad LSRs that efficiently integrate into native attachment sites in a human cell context, human genome-targeting LSRs with computationally predictable pseudosites, and multi-targeting LSRs that can unidirectionally integrate cargos with similar efficiency and superior specificity to commonly used transposases. LSRs from each category were functionally characterized in human cells, overall achieving up to 7-fold higher plasmid recombination than Bxb1 and genome insertion efficiencies of 40-70% with cargo sizes over 7 kb. Overall, we establish a paradigm for the large-scale discovery of microbial recombinases directly from sequencing data and the reconstruction of their target sites. This strategy provided a rich resource of over 60 experimentally characterized LSRs that can function in human cells and thousands of additional candidates for large-payload genome editing without double-stranded DNA breaks.

13: DeepImageJ: A user-friendly environment to run deep learning models in ImageJ
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Posted 16 Oct 2019

DeepImageJ: A user-friendly environment to run deep learning models in ImageJ
7,806 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Estibaliz Gómez-de-Mariscal, Carlos García-López-de-Haro, Wei Ouyang, Laurène Donati, Emma Lundberg, Michael Unser, Arrate Munoz-Barrutia, Daniel Sage

DeepImageJ is a user-friendly solution that enables the generic use of pre-trained deep learning (DL) models for biomedical image analysis in ImageJ. The deepImageJ environment gives access to the largest bioimage repository of pre-trained DL models (BioImage Model Zoo). Hence, non-experts can easily perform common image processing tasks in life-science research with DL-based tools including pixel and object classification, instance segmentation, denoising or virtual staining. DeepImageJ is compatible with existing state-of-the-art solutions and it is equipped with utility tools for developers to add new models. Very recently, several training frameworks have adopted the deepImageJ format to deploy their work in one of the most used software in the field (ImageJ). Beyond its direct use, we expect deepImageJ to contribute to the broader dissemination and reuse of DL models in life-sciences applications and bioimage informatics.

14: Reading canonical and modified nucleotides in 16S ribosomal RNA using nanopore direct RNA sequencing
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Posted 29 Apr 2017

Reading canonical and modified nucleotides in 16S ribosomal RNA using nanopore direct RNA sequencing
7,278 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Andrew M Smith, Miten Jain, Logan Mulroney, Daniel R Garalde, Mark Akeson

The ribosome small subunit is expressed in all living cells. It performs numerous essential functions during translation, including formation of the initiation complex and proofreading of base-pairs between mRNA codons and tRNA anticodons. The core constituent of the small ribosomal subunit is a ~1.5 kb RNA strand in prokaryotes (16S rRNA) and a homologous ~1.8 kb RNA strand in eukaryotes (18S rRNA). Traditional sequencing-by-synthesis (SBS) of rRNA genes or rRNA cDNA copies has achieved wide use as a "molecular chronometer" for phylogenetic studies [1], and as a tool for identifying infectious organisms in the clinic [2]. However, epigenetic modifications on rRNA are erased by SBS methods. Here we describe direct MinION nanopore sequencing of individual, full-length 16S rRNA absent reverse transcription or amplification. As little as 5 picograms (~10 attomole) of E. coli 16S rRNA was detected in 4.5 micrograms of total human RNA. Nanopore ionic current traces that deviated from canonical patterns revealed conserved 16S rRNA base modifications, and a 7-methylguanosine modification that confers aminoglycoside resistance to some pathological E. coli strains. This direct RNA sequencing technology has promise for rapid identification of microbes in the environment and in patient samples.

15: Designing Peptides on a Quantum Computer
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Posted 02 Sep 2019

Designing Peptides on a Quantum Computer
7,023 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Vikram Khipple Mulligan, Hans Melo, Haley Irene Merritt, Stewart Slocum, Brian D. Weitzner, Andrew M Watkins, P. Douglas Renfrew, Craig Pelissier, Paramjit S Arora, Richard Bonneau

Although a wide variety of quantum computers are currently being developed, actual computational results have been largely restricted to contrived, artificial tasks. Finding ways to apply quantum computers to useful, real-world computational tasks remains an active research area. Here we describe our mapping of the protein design problem to the D-Wave quantum annealer. We present a system whereby Rosetta, a state-of-the-art protein design software suite, interfaces with the D-Wave quantum processing unit to find amino acid side chain identities and conformations to stabilize a fixed protein backbone. Our approach, which we call the QPacker , uses a large side-chain rotamer library and the full Rosetta energy function, and in no way reduces the design task to a simpler format. We demonstrate that quantum annealer-based design can be applied to complex real-world design tasks, producing designed molecules comparable to those produced by widely adopted classical design approaches. We also show through large-scale classical folding simulations that the results produced on the quantum annealer can inform wet-lab experiments. For design tasks that scale exponentially on classical computers, the QPacker achieves nearly constant runtime performance over the range of problem sizes that could be tested. We anticipate better than classical performance scaling as quantum computers mature.

16: Applicability of Drug Response Metrics for Cancer Studies using Biomaterials
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Posted 07 Sep 2018

Applicability of Drug Response Metrics for Cancer Studies using Biomaterials
6,894 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Elizabeth A. Brooks, Sualyneth Galarza, Maria F. Gencoglu, R. Chase Cornelison, Jennifer M Munson, Shelly R Peyton

Bioengineers have built increasingly sophisticated models of the tumor microenvironment in which to study cell-cell interactions, mechanisms of cancer growth and metastasis, and to test new potential therapies. These models allow researchers to culture cells in conditions that include features of the in vivo tumor microenvironment (TME) implicated in regulating cancer progression, such as ECM stiffness, integrin binding to the ECM, immune and stromal cells, growth factor and cytokine depots, and a 3D geometry more representative of the TME than tissue culture polystyrene (TCPS). These biomaterials could be particularly useful for drug screening applications to make better predictions of efficacy, offering better translation to preclinical in vivo models and clinical trials. However, it can be challenging to compare drug response reports across different platforms and conditions in the current literature. This is, in part, as a result of inconsistent reporting and use of drug response metrics, and vast differences in cell growth rates across a large variety of biomaterial design. This perspective paper attempts to clarify the definitions of drug response measurements used in the field, and presents examples in which these measurements can and cannot be applied. We suggest as best practice to include appropriate controls, always measure the growth rate of cells in the absence of drug, and follow our provided decision tree matrix when reporting drug response metrics.

17: Exponential fluorescent amplification of individual RNAs using clampFISH probes
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Posted 21 Nov 2017

Exponential fluorescent amplification of individual RNAs using clampFISH probes
6,885 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Sara H Rouhanifard, Ian A Mellis, Margaret Dunagin, Sareh Bayatpour, Orsolya Symmons, Allison Coté, Arjun Raj

Non-enzymatic, high-gain signal amplification methods with single-cell, single-molecule resolution are in great need. We present click-amplifying FISH (clampFISH) for the fluorescent detection of RNA that combines the specificity of oligonucleotides with bioorthogonal click chemistry in order to achieve high specificity and extremely high-gain (>400x) signal amplification. We show that clampFISH signal enables detection with low magnification microscopy and separation of cells by RNA levels via flow cytometry. Additionally, we show that the modular design of clampFISH probes enables multiplexing, that the locking mechanism prevents probe detachment in expansion microscopy, and that clampFISH works in tissue samples.

18: High-throughput, low-cost and rapid DNA sequencing using surface-coating techniques
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Posted 11 Dec 2020

High-throughput, low-cost and rapid DNA sequencing using surface-coating techniques
6,745 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Yanzhe Qin, Stephan Koehler, Shengming Zhao, Ruibin Mai, Zhuo Liu, Hao Lu, Chengmei Xing

The speed, expense and throughput of genomic sequencing impose limitations on its use for time-sensitive acute cases, such as rare or antibiotic resistant infections, and large-scale testing that is necessary for containing COVID-19 outbreaks using source-tracing. The major bottleneck for increasing the bandwidth and decreasing operating costs of next-generation sequencers (NGS) is the flow cell that supplies reagents for the biochemical processes; this subsystem has not significantly improved since 2005. Here we report a new method for sourcing reagents based on surface coating technology (SCT): the DNA adhered onto the biochip is directly contacted by a reagent-coated polymeric strip. Compared with flow cells the reagent layers are an order of magnitude thinner while both the reagent exchange rate and biochip area are orders of magnitude greater. These improvements drop the turn-around time from days to twelve hours and the cost for whole genome sequencing (WGS) from about $1000 to $15, as well as increase data production by several orders of magnitude. This makes NGS more affordable than many blood tests while rapidly providing detailed genomic information about microbial and viral pathogens, cancers and genetic disorders for targeted treatments and personalized medicine. This data can be pooled in population-wide databases for accelerated research and development as well providing detailed real-time data for tracking and containing outbreaks, such as the current COVID-pandemic.

19: Corrigendum and follow-up: Whole genome sequencing of multiple CRISPR-edited mouse lines suggests no excess mutations.
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Posted 23 Jun 2017

Corrigendum and follow-up: Whole genome sequencing of multiple CRISPR-edited mouse lines suggests no excess mutations.
6,518 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Kellie A. Schaefer, Benjamin W Darbro, Diana F. Colgan, Stephen H. Tsang, Alexander G. Bassuk, Vinit B. Mahajan

Our previous publication suggested CRISPR-Cas9 editing at the zygotic stage might unexpectedly introduce a multitude of subtle but unintended mutations, an interpretation that not surprisingly raised numerous questions. The key issue is that since parental lines were not available, might the reported variants have been inherited? To expand upon the limited available whole genome data on whether CRISPR-edited mice show more genetic variation, whole-genome sequencing was performed on two other mouse lines that had undergone a CRISPR-editing procedure. Again, parents were not available for either the Capn5 nor Fblim1 CRISPR-edited mouse lines, so strain controls were examined. Additionally, we also include verification of variants detected in the initial mouse line. Taken together, these whole-genome-sequencing-level results support the idea that in specific cases, CRISPR-Cas9 editing can precisely edit the genome at the organismal level and may not introduce numerous, unintended, off-target mutations.

20: Proteomics of spatially identified tissues in whole organs
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Posted 04 Nov 2021

Proteomics of spatially identified tissues in whole organs
6,490 downloads bioRxiv bioengineering

Harsharan Singh Bhatia, Andreas-David Brunner, Zhouyi Rong, Hongcheng Mai, Marvin Thielert, Rami Al-Maskari, Johannes Christian Paetzold, Florian Kofler, Mihail Ivilinov Todorov, Mayar Ali, Muge Molbay, Zeynep Ilgin Kolabas, Doris Kaltenecker, Stephan Mueller, Stefan F. Lichtenthaler, Bjoern H. Menze, Fabian J Theis, Matthias Mann, Ali Erturk

Spatial molecular profiling of complex tissues is essential to investigate cellular function in physiological and pathological states. However, methods for molecular analysis of biological specimens imaged in 3D as a whole are lacking. Here, we present DISCO-MS, a technology combining whole-organ imaging, deep learning-based image analysis, and ultra-high sensitivity mass spectrometry. DISCO-MS yielded qualitative and quantitative proteomics data indistinguishable from uncleared samples in both rodent and human tissues. Using DISCO-MS, we investigated microglia activation locally along axonal tracts after brain injury and revealed known and novel biomarkers. Furthermore, we identified initial individual amyloid-beta plaques in the brains of a young familial Alzheimer's disease mouse model, characterized the core proteome of these aggregates, and highlighted their compositional heterogeneity. Thus, DISCO-MS enables quantitative, unbiased proteome analysis of target tissues following unbiased imaging of entire organs, providing new diagnostic and therapeutic opportunities for complex diseases, including neurodegeneration.

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