In collaboration with researchers at the J. Craig Venter Institute, University of Minnesota, and Santa Fe Institute, we published a paper describing 2 years of attempts to derive a cell-free expression (CFE) system based on Mycoplasma bacterium. What seemed to be a simple and straightforward project, turned out to be challenging due to unique features of Mycoplasma biology. As a parasite of mammals, mycoplasmas evolved to scavenge its surrounding environment for nutrients. Therefore, surface nucleases are essential for survival. For producing lysates, such nucleases degraded important nucleic acids (e.g. ribosomal RNA), which prevented in vitro transcription-translation reactions. A series of new methods were designed for testing the quality of lysates and for producing lysates with lower nuclease activity.”
You can find the new article here.
Congratulations Andrei, Wilhelm and all collaborators!