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Showing posts from July, 2014

DREADDs for deconstructing signaling pathways in cellular processes

Two nice papers by the Gutkind lab (NIH) have used DREADDs in a synthetic biology context for deconstructing signaling pathways involved in processes in triple negative breast cancer (Science Signaling) and in mitogenic processes (Molecular Cell).

The paper in Molecular Cell is particularly interesting (IMHO) because it lays out a strategy whereby DREADDs as a synthetic biology platform are combined with genome-wide RNAi to identify down-stream signaling nodes and networks.

One can imagine such an approach being particularly useful in model organisms such as Drosophila and C. elegans as well as utilizing CRISPR-based strategies for genome-wide interrogation of functionalities.

Probably y'all can imagine other utilities...

DREADD-assisted metabolic mapping (DREAMM)

An interesting and potentially useful technology combining DREADDs and microPET imaging has been described recently.  Essentially it allows for identification of circuits involved in various behaviors in freely moving animals.