E. coli, What a Noisy Bug

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Science  30 Jul 2010:
Vol. 329, Issue 5991, pp. 518-519
DOI: 10.1126/science.1194036

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To study gene expression, researchers often grind up a large number of cells grown under the same conditions and then measure the amounts of gene products, such as messenger RNAs (mRNAs) and proteins, in the soup. Many recent studies, however, have pointed out that beneath such average measurements lies great variation among individual cells, sometimes referred to as “noise” (1, 2).