AP Biology class blog for discussing current research in Biology

Author: rectim

CRISPR and Improving Crops

CRISPR and improving crops

The Article: How scientists are using CRISPR to create non-GMO crops   by Yi Li touches upon how CRISPR can replace the usage of conventional GMO crops today. By using CRISPR to make these new crops we can solve the problems that GMO crops provide because for annual crop plants like corn, tomatoes, and rice can have the CRISPR genes bred out of their gene pool. This would make the effects of these CRISPR crops not undoable and therefore would not pose the same threats that GMO crops do. CRISPR crops could also be created faster and be more precise than GMO crops, making crops with powerful resistances to droughts, pests, and poor soil. Creating new plant technology to increase yields is essential to keeping up with the growing human population so some type of man made crop is needed to serve us. This method seems to be a very viable option to solve this problem. This CRISPR technology also will likely lower the price of crops and help boost the economy and could be used to help third world countries with their famines. Yi Li States that the CRISPR will work to change the plant by being inserted inside the plant cells. From there the CRISPR will locate and rewrite the relevant section of the DNA. Do you want your food to be cheaper? Do you want to boost the economy? Do you wanna help those who are hungry? Want to learn More about how the concept of CRISPR crops will work. This article (What are genome editing and CRISPR-Cas9?) explains what CRISPR is and how it works to change the genome. And the article Bypassing GMO regulations with CRISPR gene editing will show you how CRISPR is better than GMO and is able to be outside of those regulations.

How your poop determines your health

How your poop determines your Health

Have you ever looked at your poop and thought what waste? Well after reading this article you’ll think what a waste that I’m not using poop to observe my health. Laurel Hamers in her article Studies can be in vitro, in vivo and now in Fimo- in poop comments on the many medical uses of poop. It can be used to survey the health of your gut micro-biome, a very important but also overlooked piece of one’s health that can affect one’s mood, overall digestive health and much more. There have even been poop transplants to fix gut micro-biomes which has been shown to help fight obesity and certain digestive disorders. Poop can be used to track enzyme activity which can tell you about gut motility and indicate the health of multiple organs in the body such as the liver, pancreas, gallbladder and digestive tract. Poop in addition to those amazing things is a source of your DNA which can be used to tell many things about overall health. Poop can also help indicate specifically if one has colon cancer. With all these great uses for poop Laurel Hamers believes poop extraction will become a popular medical endeavor and should get a new medical name. The name is “in Fimo” coming from the latin word excrete and meaning “in the excrement”. Laurel and her fellow scientists have already begun to use the word in conferences and with their patients. Its likely that later in your life you’ll be at the doctor and they’ll tell you “were gonna have to check your health ‘in fimo’ today”. Other articles you may wanna look at are One mans poop is another’s medicine or what are the causes of Black stool? if you’d like to learn more.

How The gut affects mental health


Image result for the gut microbiome

The article, Gut microbiota’s effect on mental health: The gut-brain axis, touches upon the way in which the gut microbiome is connected to your central nervous system and how they affect each other. It explains how the vagus nerve and afferent fibers connect your gut to your brain and helps control your mood by indirectly affecting the amount of Serotonin in your brain. An unhealthy microbiome or dysbiosis is correlated with a large number mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. It also mentions that the gut microbiome may also be able to affect your immune and endocrine system as well the central nervous system. The article concludes that the improvement of peoples gut microbiota may serve as an effective treatment for those with a number of mental disorders through the means of probiotics. The article Feeling Meh? This is How Your Gut Affects Your Mood(Plus, Exactly How to Fix It)  goes through an example of a man who dealt with serious depression and had tried antidepressants and felt only more unhappy while on them. He decided to change his diet instead to one high in vegetables and fiber as well as healthy amounts of protein and fat. The man felt he had more energy, he felt much less anxious and depressed and even felt he gained a much stronger sense of empathy which improved his relationships only furthering his happiness. Do you want to be Happier? Healthier?  Have a stronger immune system? Well then you better eat your probiotics and prebiotics. If you want to do some more research yourself check out this article: Article 2

Saturated Fat Myth


I chose this article because my whole life my grandparents have told me that the “unhealthy saturated fat myth was a lie” and after seeing on our biology test last week that it caused atherosclerosis I decided to see for my self.

This article looks at a couple of experimental studies done in 2016 and 2017 on saturated fat. They came to the conclusion that the consumption of saturated fat saw little to no association with the development of atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease. They actually found that the consumption of polyunsaturated fatty acids and carbohydrates seemed to pose a greater risk for developing these diseases. This article describes a meta analysis of a number of studies researching this topic which I believe is one of the best ways to prove something. The articles also talks about the over exaggeration of cholesterol in the diet as the cholesterol in your body is tightly regulated by the body, especially if you’re young, and you need a lot of it to function properly. It also talks about the power of exercise in preventing these diseases –  it states that even a brisk walk each day can have a dramatic effect on insulin levels. Do you like butter? Do you like hamburgers, or even coconuts? Research  shows that there is no issue consuming them, so munch away. if you want to do more research here are 2 more articles touching upon the same findings(article1 article2)


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