'Junk DNA' Cell biology Genetics Intelligent Design

Wouldn’t you know, jumping “junk DNA” can be lethal too

Researchers Nigel Goldenfeld and Thomas Kuhlman noticed that “half of the human genome is made up of retrotransposons [jumping genes, “junk DNA”], but bacteria hardly have them at all” and wondered what would happen if they just inserted some: “We thought a really simple thing to try was to just take one (retrotransposon) out of […]

Cell biology Evolution Intelligent Design

Researchers: Reproductive stem cells have system to fight off jumping genes

Whose triumph would create “catastrophic genomic instability”: Since Carnegie Institution’s Barbara McClintock received her Nobel Prize on her discovery of jumping genes in 1983, we have learned that almost half of our DNA is made up of jumping genes—called transposons. Given their ability of jumping around the genome in developing sperm and egg cells, their […]

Cell biology Design inference Genetics

Researchers: Jumping genes time their activity, await opportunity

From ScienceDaily: Researchers have developed new techniques to track the mobilization of jumping genes. They found that during a particular period of egg development, a group of jumping-genes called retrotransposons hijacks special cells called nurse cells that nurture the developing eggs. These jumping genes use nurse cells to produce invasive material (copies of themselves called […]