Helicase Wiki Research Project

Helicase Wiki Research Project
The speed at which molecular biology moves often makes certain aspects of
textbooks obsolete within a few years. The aim of this project is to keep our
course up to date with the latest findings in molecular biology and look at their
impact on our understanding of the fundamental underpinnings of the central
dogma: DNA to RNA to Protein. Rather than have you write a research paper
that gets filed away in some filing cabinet, the result of this project will be a
public document that anyone can access to get information on your topic. Future
students in the class will read them and others may add new information to your
work. Think of it as a dynamic textbook that you will be contributing chapters to.
The second goal of the project is to encourage you to realize the potential of using
web-based technologies so that you can design a truly interactive entry on our
I want the topics to be driven by your interests not mine, so I will give you
relatively free reign in determining your subject matter. The only constraint is
that there has to be some connection to an aspect of the central dogma. Here are
three broad topic areas you might consider:
Human Disease Genes: This wiki page would have an in-depth description of
the particular disease and it symptoms. It would then describe what gene,
when mutated, causes the disease including what is know about its function
how that may cause the disease. The only requirement here is that you must
pick a disease about which a fair bit is known about the mutation that causes
New Therapeutics: This wiki page would have an in depth description of
particular medicines, how they work, and what diseases they are used for.
This can include RNA interference, antibiotics, anti-virals, new
chemotherapeutics, gene therapy approaches, and antibody based therapies
New Lab Technologies: This wiki page would have an in depth description of
cutting edge techniques in molecular biology, how they work, and how they
have helped us understand some aspect of molecular biology. This could
include new DNA sequencing technologies, new microarray based
technologies, gene-chips for genotyping humans, gene-chips for tracking
pathogens, single molecule microscopy, and the use fluorescent proteins.
No matter which topic you choose, you must have 20 peer-reviewed references.
We will have a discussion about peer-review issues and web-based resources on
September 23rd.
If you have an idea, but you are unsure if it is appropriate, just stop by and we can
discuss it.
Grading: I have attached the grading rubric that I will use to evaluate your wiki
project. It outlines exactly what I am looking for and how many points will be
assigned for each requirement. As you can see, I will be grading on content but
also wiki design and interactivity. Since we are working in pairs, I ask that you
divide the work equally between the two partners and indicate in your initial
outline/wiki development plan which partner is responsible for particular parts
of the wiki. Ultimately, as administrator of the wiki, I will be able to see who has
added which sections of your page. You will have the opportunity to
anonymously critique the contributions of your partner. This will be taken into
account when I assign the final grade.
Project Timeline and Due Dates
(You will receive a 1 point deduction from your final grade for each day past the
due date an assignment is turned in)
Topic Approval: Topic must be approved by September 23rd
Wiki Page Activated and Detailed Outline: Due on October 7th
This must include a break down of each partner’s responsibilities
Final Draft of Wiki Page: Due on November 4th
Anonymous Peer-review: Due on November 11th
Final Wiki Due: Due on November 25th
The complete project is worth 125 points:
10 points assigned based on the final draft
5 points assigned based on usefulness of your peer-review
10 points assigned based on your contribution to project
100 points assigned as outlined in the grading rubric
Note: It is possible for two partners to receive different grades based on their
overall contribution to the project.