9,252 reputation
33772
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location Cambridge, United Kingdom
age 29
visits member for 3 years, 9 months
seen 17 hours ago

I’m a bioinformatics PhD student at EMBL-EBI and the University of Cambridge but I’m originally from Berlin.

My programming interests span from C++ over .NET and dynamic languages all the way to XHMTL/CSS and R.

I’m mainly working on genomics using high-throughput sequencing data. My thesis is about the regulation and expression of non-coding RNA (especially tRNA) in mammals.

Here’s my …

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github-pic Github account
cv-pic Resume


Nov
12
comment Is Lamarckian evolution still considered credible?
@M.Herzkamp I’ve never heard it being described this way, it’s nonsense. “Lamarckism” is being thrown around like crazy recently but that’s all just to make the research sound more controversial than it is. There’s nothing Lamarckian to it because, as I’ve described in my answer, Lamarckism simply does not meaningfully apply to single-celled organisms. And CRISPR/Cas9 isn’t even unique in helping acquire traits: normal lateral gene transfer via plasmids has the same effect.
Nov
4
comment Is standing near Lake Karachay for an hour fatal?
On that subject, I would trust Wikipedia over almost anything else. Every general-purpose source of information, certainly. It’s repeatedly been shown to be more reliable than any other such source.
Aug
13
comment Is race a discredited scientific concept in biology?
@SigmaX This has been studied by – amongst others – Sarah Tishkoff and published in Science. It’s worth nothing that her research has been misrepresented by Nicholas Wade (and others) as support for the race concept. To which she, along with other evolutionary biologists, has replied, explicitly rejecting this interpretation.
Aug
12
comment Did Russian hackers obtain billions of passwords?
@Ladadadada He’s a special advisor of Holden Sec: holdsecurity.com/about/advisory-board – As a special advisor he’s probably not paid by them (otherwise he would be lying) but he’s definitely got a vested interest in their success. More information about this (and generally relevant to this question) here: youarenotpayingattention.com/2014/08/08/…
Aug
12
comment Did Russian hackers obtain billions of passwords?
@Ladadadada It should be noted that Brian Krebs has a financial stake in the matter so he isn’t impartial.
Aug
10
comment Does a fish pedicure do any good?
@Lola No, they “cover” it as in, they pay for the treatment. They’re a health insurance, not a liability insurance.
Jul
28
comment Is gun control effective?
@Jasmine I don’t understand how you can come to this conclusion, given that my answer starts with this sentence: “ I don’t know how well a single case-study can be generalised, or applied in a different cultural setting.”
Jul
26
comment Is gun control effective?
@Jasmine (a) “The gun control pushers” are not a homogeneous group. (b) There is literally only one alternative to a buyback, if you prohibit guns which are currently in circulation: make all people possessing these guns felons. Nobody is suggesting this. By exclusion, people are arguing (implicitly) for a buyback (or maybe a non-reimbursed relinquishment, but I don’t think anybody honestly believes that could work).
Jul
25
comment Is gun control effective?
@Jasmine No. Your point is a pure straw man: A law without enforcement is irrelevant. For what it’s worth, I agree that the situation is fundamentally different in e.g. the US, and that a similar thing may well not work. But that isn’t fundamentally because gun control is ineffective (it can be, Australia shows that) but because there’s no easy way to implement it in a particular setting. So maybe we can meet on middle ground: gun control can be effective but it isn’t automatically so.
Jul
24
comment Is gun control effective?
@Jasmine The buyback enforced the law. Without the law there wouldn’t have been a buyback. I agree that a poorly implemented law obviously wouldn’t be effective, but that’s a rather boring point to make.
Jun
27
comment Are there signification health risks with long term use of headphones on a cellphone?
You can link to the source of these bogus claims, the BioInitiative Report, directly. That said, it’s not hard to find good sources which pick holes in the report.
Jun
17
comment Is refusing to decrypt data for the police illegal in England and Wales?
@DJClayworth (1) It also doesn’t say anything about requiring to do so. This is at the least open to abuse, and at worst an open invitation to do so. (2) You are simply wrong, and I have stated so repeatedly. This also relates to (3): You have the logic wrong, and my interpretation is supported by others as well. The “sufficient evidence” is to show that you do not possess the key, not, as you allege, to show that you do possess the key.
Jun
4
comment Is domestic violence the leading cause of injury to women between ages of 15 and 44?
@DJClayworth To some extent, yes. I’m contending that this is a loaded question though. And so that we don’t misunderstand each other (as is wont in such discussions): I am not denying that we have a rampant sexism problem, and that (sexual) violence against women forms a big part of that. I do contend, though, that domestic violence should not be confounded with that.
Jun
4
comment Is domestic violence the leading cause of injury to women between ages of 15 and 44?
Is there a reason to assume that this is special for women? Or is it also true for men? After all, domestic violence against men seems to be roughly on par with that against women (at least according to some statistics, the numbers vary extremely widely).
May
27
comment Is it possible for ingested dsRNA (or other genetic materials) to affect human gene expression?
I’d be wary of an article that gets its biology wrong in the very first paragraph: “Most genetically modified (GM) crops are based on moving DNA from one organism to another to introduce a new protein. Now a growing number of genetically modified crops are based on intentionally changing RNA.” – That’s of course nonsense, in all cases the DNA is changed, and in all cases the RNA is affected. The only difference is that some newer modifications don’t code for proteins but rather for smaller fragments which form double strands. What’s more, this is a staple defence of cells against viruses.
May
12
comment Spontaneous human combustion, is it possible?
@Bobson That would count as “from inside” in this context, but as the quoted text remarked, there don’t seem to be cases of that known; although it should be theoretically possible.
Apr
27
comment Are discussions about suicide themselves suicide triggers?
The second paragraph is a lot of idle speculation, and some of it flat out wrong (the media focused quite extensively on Cobain’s death).
Apr
27
comment Are discussions about suicide themselves suicide triggers?
Isn’t the concept of a “psychological trigger” itself highly controversial (not the fact that they exist, just the claim that they can be predicted, and avoided)?
Apr
24
comment Has most peer-reviewed research on homeopathy given positive results?
I would have written a quite similar answer, but it might help to state explicitly and unequivocally: the Linde study, while well-intentioned, was methodologically flawed, hence the misleading conclusion.
Apr
4
comment If the viewable part of lightning goes from the ground up, why does it look like lightning goes from the sky down?
“it is clear …” – not really. What you’re seeing there is not the lightning. The lightning comes at the very end, and it’s indeed from the bottom up.