This is no Seurat. It’s not an Andy Warhol. And it’s not your grandmother’s cross-stitch, either. Scientists at NYU Langone Medical Center have genetically altered basic yeast and created these images in living color. This is a live yeast portrait of Gregor Mendel, far right, the ultimate nod to the father of modern genetics.
For centuries, humans have played around with yeast. In ancient days, we domesticated it to make beer and bread. This artwork is just a way to visualize the next frontier of yeast manipulation.
A few years ago, the geneticist Dr. Jef Boeke and his laboratory at NYU got together with researchers worldwide to synthetically recreate the 16-chromosome genome of brewer’s yeast. The goal of the effort, calledSynthetic Yeast 2.0, is to better understand “the complicated web of genetic interactions that underlie all biological processes,” Dr. Boeke said.
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