They were only discovered in 1977 and they get more unusual all the time: Microbes called archaea package their genetic material into flexible shapes that flop open in unusual ways, Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Investigator Karolin Luger reports March 2, 2021, in the journal eLife. “Very much to our surprise, we found that these Read More…
U Buffalo: “Researchers analyzed the dog’s mitochondrial genome, and concluded that the animal belonged to a lineage of dogs whose evolutionary history diverged from that of Siberian dogs as early as 16,700 years ago.”
At The Conversation on junk DNA: Bewilderingly, scientists found that the non-coding genome was actually responsible for the majority of information that impacted disease development in humans. Such findings have made it clear that the non-coding genome is actually far more important than previously thought.
At Sapiens: Thanks to this work, we now know details about Neanderthals that the archaeological record alone could never have provided. For example, fragments of DNA from specimens found in Spain and Italy showed that at least some Neanderthals likely had pale skin and reddish hair—although, interestingly, the variations for this coloring are different from the variants found in modern humans. Apparently, redheads among Homo sapiens evolved separately…
Some of us remember when we were 99% chimpanzee… But that is so last decade … This type of finding makes more sense. If we were really 99% genetically similar to chimpanzees, the logical deduction is that the genome doesn’t tell us much about a life form. Would be nice if it did, right?
AI natural language processors analyze sentences in human languages but the human genome is a language with sentences too.
We remember when genetics was simple and determinist.
All of this attempted reconstruction depends on the assumption that the platypus is not just an oddity of nature but a manuscript of genetic changes. Well, we shall see.
Researchers: Achromatium is special in many respects: It is 30,000 times larger than its “normal” counterparts that live in water and owing to its calcite deposits it is visible to the naked eye. It has several hundred chromosomes, which are most likely not identical. This makes Achromatium the only known bacterium with several different genomes.
Researcher: “Missing overlapping genes puts us in peril of overlooking important aspects of viral biology,” said Nelson. “In terms of genome size, SARS-CoV-2 and its relatives are among the longest RNA viruses that exist. They are thus perhaps more prone to ‘genomic trickery’ than other RNA viruses.”
They said it. We didn’t. “Blowing the dogma out of the water”
Erik Parens: They are unfailingly clear about the fact that, when they add up the tiny genetic effects, the aggregate is small compared with, say, the total effect of the environment. They are relentless in their rejection of genetic determinism, and vigorous in their reiteration that environments play a huge role in explaining the outcomes they study.
Sure but then what about the famous twin studies that were supposed to prove so much about human nature? No? Then it’s probably best for the New Scientists to just get out of the “gene for that” hell while they can.
Imagine, all that information in there doesn’t weigh anything. But it matters.
At Nature: The genome produced by Gemmell and co-workers is one of the largest vertebrate genomes published so far. At more than 5 gigabases, it is about 50% larger than the human genome… Tuatara have a close resemblance to their forebears from the early Mesozoic era, between 240 million and 230 million years ago…