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Genetics News
Tue, 03 May 2016 13:16:56 EDT
Seeking to rewind mammalian extinction: The effort to save the northern white rhino
In December 2015 an international group of scientists convened to discuss the imminent extinction of the northern white rhinoceros and the possibility of bringing the species back from brink of extinction.
Tue, 03 May 2016 13:13:59 EDT
Scientists reveal how cell corrects errors made in gene transcription
The dynamics of the RNA polymerase II (Pol II) backtracking process is poorly understood. Scientists have now built a Markov State Model from extensive molecular dynamics simulations to identify metastable intermediate states and the dynamics of backtracking at atomistic detail. The results reveal that Pol II backtracking occurs in a stepwise mode where two intermediate states are involved.
Tue, 03 May 2016 13:03:42 EDT
Why Labrador retrievers are more interested in food than other breeds
Dog owners tell their vets that Labrador retrievers are always interested in food, and new work shows there might be a biological truth to the claim. A study links a gene alteration specifically found in Labs to greater food-motivated behavior, describing the first gene associated with canine obesity. The variation also occurs more frequently in Labradors chosen as assistance dogs, and might explain why these canines seem more trainable with food rewards.
Tue, 03 May 2016 10:44:37 EDT
Biophysics of bacterial cell division: Closing the ring
How bacterial cells divide in two is not fully understood. Physicists now show that, at high concentrations, a crucial protein can assemble into ring-shaped filaments that constrict the cell, giving rise to two daughter cells.
Tue, 03 May 2016 10:41:45 EDT
Bacteria use traffic-cop-like mechanism to infect gut
A study has found that a cellular syringe-like device used to invade intestinal cells also acts as a traffic cop -- directing bacteria where to go and thereby enabling them to efficiently carry out infection. This mechanism is critical to a pathogen's success.
Tue, 03 May 2016 07:25:57 EDT
The herring genome provides new insight on how species adapt to their environment
How species genetically adapt to their environment is a central question related to the evolution of biodiversity. In a new study scientists report that whole genome sequencing of Atlantic and Baltic herring revealed hundreds of loci underlying adaptation to the brackish Baltic Sea or timing of reproduction. The study is published today in eLife.
Mon, 02 May 2016 16:11:08 EDT
Methane production reduced in ruminants
Livestock farming is responsible for 18 percent of the world's greenhouse gases, and ruminants such as cattle, sheep and goats generate 35 percent of one of these gases -- methane, and according to experts they make a significant contribution to climate change.
Mon, 02 May 2016 13:15:07 EDT
Endangered venomous mammal predates dinosaurs' extinction, study confirms
Biologists have completely sequenced the mitochondrial genome for the Hispaniolan solenodon, filling in the last major branch of placental mammals on the tree of life. The study confirmed that the venomous mammal diverged from all other living mammals 78 million years ago, long before an asteroid wiped out the dinosaurs.
Mon, 02 May 2016 13:10:06 EDT
How DNA can take on the properties of sand or toothpaste
When does DNA behave like sand or toothpaste? When the genetic material is so densely packed within a virus, it can behave like grains of sand or toothpaste in a tube.That's essentially what biophysicists discovered when they began closely examining the physical properties of DNA jammed inside viruses.
Mon, 02 May 2016 11:14:30 EDT
Nuclear pores captured on film
Using an ultra fast-scanning atomic force microscope, a team of researchers has filmed “living” nuclear pore complexes at work for the first time. Nuclear pores are molecular machines that control the traffic entering or exiting the cell nucleus. In a new article, the researchers explain how the passage of unwanted molecules is prevented by rapidly moving molecular “tentacles” inside the pore.
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