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Contact: Jeff Falk
jfalk@rice.edu
713-348-6775
Rice University

Vertical Escherichia coli

Caption: Rice University scientists engineered a synthetic genetic clock inside a mutant Escherichia coli bacteria that keeps time despite rising or falling temperature. In an experiment, the researchers isolated a small number of engineered bacteria under a fluorescent microscope and captured images over three hours as a single cell (yellow arrow) oscillated at a regular clip between states despite changing conditions. They found altering one amino acid to make a regulator protein sensitive to temperature provided the right feedback to the bacteria's circadian clock.

Credit: Bennett Lab/Rice University

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Related news release: Synthetic genetic clock checks the thermometer


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