CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Dec. 3, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --Scientists find that games and graphics help break down complex topics like plasmid cloning.
Plasmid Land is a simplistic game created to explain the importance of plasmid cloning in science. It shows that using a plasmid repository can save an incredible amount of time in biological research. Additionally, it shows the steps of molecular cloning including gene extraction and sequencing.
Addgene is the repository that created this game for industry use. Their hope is that those outside of the field will be able to understand and appreciate the process. Currently they have more than 18,000 plasmids available for order from dozens of various species. Their website describes plasmids as "highly versatile DNA-based tools used by biomedical researchers in a broad range of applications."
A plasmid repository is comparable to a library full of plasmid clones that scientists and researchers can share with each other to speed up research. Each one plasmid is an isolated piece of DNA. Gene sharing is now done internationally by repositories that act as an intermediary.
There are benefits for both parties in the exchange. Those who originally create and deposit the plasmid get free storage and will always have access to their work. Those who order clones can order one for less than $70. This means they can use the money they saved toward further research.
Scientists already share their written research and this is another way to increase productivity. The end result being biological and medical advancements that have the potential to improve lives. And that is a win-win situation for everyone.
Addgene is a non-profit repository that started in 2004. They make archiving, record keeping and distribution easy and organized. They have over 1,000 depositors and have already distributed hundreds of thousands of genes. Their central goal is to make research easier for scientists around the globe. To see more about Addgene go to https://www.addgene.org/.