The Biochemist Blog

Epigenetics: past and present

By David Hornby, University of Sheffield

Forty years ago this month I sat in my first lecture, an intensive introduction to ‘University Chemistry’. This was partially tempered with an Integrated Biology course on Darwinian evolution. Maybe this ‘christening by fire’ gave me the strong view that all biochemists should be equally grounded in both of these subjects. I also remember being told at school that Darwin’s ideas were all about chance and selection, while Lamarck’s theory centred on inter-generational adaptation. Who hasn’t been told about Lamarck’s giraffes!

Why can tendons tell time?

By Chloé Yeung, Institute of Sports Medicine Copenhagen, Denmark

At the start of October, the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was awarded jointly to Jeffrey C. Hall, Michael Rosbash and Michael W. Young for their discoveries of molecular mechanisms controlling the circadian rhythm. In recent years, the very same molecular mechanisms have been discovered in our peripheral tissues and we’re now beginning to understand why circadian rhythms are also needed in our musculoskeletal tissues.