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Open Biosystems s Expression Arrest, Gene Tools, The Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development s Outlook 2004, and Promega s siStrike


Open Biosystems said this week that it has launched the Expression Arrest zebrafish morpholino library, an antisense product for use in gene function analysis experiments in multicellular vertebrates.

According to the company, the library contains hundreds of zebrafish morpholinos designed and synthesized for immediate use. It was designed by Gene Tools and will be marketed exclusively by Open Biosystems, which said it intends to introduce morpholinos from other species in the future.

The Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development released this week its Outlook 2004 report, which included a prediction that the use of RNA interference for the identification of therapeutic drug targets will increase this year.

The report also states that the US Food and Drug Administration will likely approve in the near future the first antisense drug for cancer.

Additional details can be found at

Promega recently introduced the siStrike U6 hairpin cloning systems, which is a series of linearized plasmids designed for the cloning of hairpin target sequences for the expression of siRNA sequences in human cells.

According to the company, two short DNA oligonucleotides are synthesized and annealed to form a DNA insert that contains the hairpin siRNA target sequence. After annealing, the oligonucleotide forms ends that are compatible with the linearized siStrike vector ends and facilitate a sticky-end ligation.

“The plasmids contain the human U6 promoter, which is recognized by RNA polymerase III,” Promega added. “Once transfected, RNA polymerase III transcribes the hairpin target sequences to generate hairpin siRNAs in vivo. This RNA hairpin then interacts with RISC resulting in RNA interference.”

Details about the hairpin cloning system can be found at

The Scan

Two J&J Doses

Johnson & Johnson says two doses of its SARS-CoV-2 vaccine provides increased protection against symptomatic COVID-19, CNN reports.

Pfizer-BioNTech Vaccine Response in Kids

The Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine in a lower-dose format appears to generate an immune response among children, according to the Washington Post.

Chicken Changes to Prevent Disease

The Guardian writes that researchers are looking at gene editing chickens to help prevent future pandemics.

PNAS Papers on Siberian Dog Ancestry, Insect Reproduction, Hippocampal Neurogenesis

In PNAS this week: ancestry and admixture among Siberian dogs, hormone role in fruit fly reproduction, and more.