Tag Archives | DNA

dna_primordial

Primordial DNA could have appeared spontaneously, suggests new study

The self-organization properties of DNA-like molecular fragments four billion years ago may have guided their own growth into repeating chemical chains long enough to act as a basis for primitive life, say an international team of scientists from the University of Colorado Boulder and the University of University of Milan. A paper describing the intriguing […]

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male_diverse

Male genetic diversity strangled by wealth and power




Genetic researchers have discovered an extremely dramatic decline in male genetic diversity between 4,000 and 8,000 years ago, while in contrast, female genetic diversity was on the rise. The work, by scientists from Arizona State University (ASU), the University of Cambridge, and the University of Tartu (Estonia), has been published in the journalGenome Research. It […]




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cryptophyte

Algae turn quantum coherence on and off




A team of researchers has discovered how algae that survive in very low levels of light are able to switch on-and-off a quantum phenomenon known as coherence. The function of coherence in the algae remains a mystery, but the researchers think it could help the organisms harvest energy from the Sun much more efficiently. The […]




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dna_face

Mug shots from DNA possible, say scientists




DNA can already tell us the sex and ancestry of unknown individuals, but now an international team of researchers is beginning to connect genetics with facial features, degrees of femininity, and racial characteristics. Writing about their work in PLOS Genetics, the researchers detail how by jointly modeling sex, genomic ancestry, and genotype, the independent effects […]




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sperm_bot2

Sperm-like biological robot displays “remarkable” self-organization




Powered by cultured heart cells, tiny, self-organizing bio-hybrid machines that swim like sperm have been created by scientists at the University of Illinois. A report on the synthetic self-propelled bio-bots appears in the journal Nature Communications. “Micro-organisms have a whole world that we only glimpse through the microscope,” said Taher Saif, lead scientist on the […]




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meditation

Gene expression altered with meditation




Previous studies have shown that meditation can trigger changes in the brain and body but the biological mechanism for these effects has remained a mystery. Now, in the journalPsychoneuroendocrinology, researchers are reporting the first evidence of specific molecular changes in the body following a period of meditation. The new work, by researchers in the U.S., […]




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cell_circuit

Bio-computer combines DNA memory and cellular logic gates




MIT scientists have created genetic circuits in bacterial cells that not only perform logic functions, but also remember the results, which are encoded in the cell’s DNA and passed on for dozens of generations. The circuits, described in aNature Biotechnology paper, could be used as long-term environmental sensors, control mechanisms for biomanufacturing, or to program […]




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