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Latest Chromosome Stories

2011-10-03 15:45:04

When cells divide normally, DNA gets copied perfectly and distributed among the daughter cells with an even hand. Occasionally though, DNA breaks during division and is rearranged, resulting in duplications or deletions of important parts of the blueprint. Now researchers at Baylor College of Medicine who study families with such genomic disorders have found a shared, yet unusual, architecture resulting from this jumble that is associated with very severe forms of disease. They also...

2011-09-19 23:08:35

Research Disputes Established Theory on Chromosome Activity Fruit flies have been indispensible to our understanding of genetics and biological processes in all animals, including humans. Yet, despite being one of the most studied of animals, scientists are still finding the fruit fly to be capable of surprises, as evidenced by new research at the University of Rochester. The latest revelation has to do with the activity of the X chromosome in male fruit flies. It was widely accepted...

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2011-09-14 23:06:31

Scientists have synthesized from scratch a so-called chromosome "arm"--one of the largest DNA molecules ever synthesized, and developed a new method for shuffling an organism's genetic deck Scientists have replaced all of the DNA in the arm of a yeast chromosome with computer-designed, synthetically produced DNA that is structurally distinct from its original DNA to produce a healthy yeast cell. (Yeast chromosomes are often depicted as bow tie-shaped--with each chromosome bearing two...

2011-09-14 22:20:02

Johns Hopkins researchers create man-made system with built-in diversity generator In the quest to understand genomes–how they're built, how they're organized and what makes them work–a team of Johns Hopkins researchers has engineered from scratch a computer-designed yeast chromosome and incorporated into their creation a new system that lets scientists intentionally rearrange the yeast's genetic material. A report of their work appears September 14 as an Advance Online...

2011-09-08 20:54:30

Researchers at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) have obtained the first high-resolution, three-dimensional images of a cell with a nucleus undergoing cell division. The observations, made using a powerful imaging technique in combination with a new method for slicing cell samples, indicate that one of the characteristic steps of mitosis is significantly different in some cells. During mitosis, two sets of chromosomes get paired up at the center of the cell's nucleus. Then...

Scientists Create Mammalian Cells With Single Chromosome Set
2011-09-08 06:14:18

  Researchers have created mammalian cells containing a single set of chromosomes for the first time in research funded by the Wellcome Trust and EMBO. The technique should allow scientists to better establish the relationships between genes and their function. Mammal cells usually contain two sets of chromosomes — one set inherited from the mother, one from the father. The genetic information contained in these chromosome sets helps determine how our bodies develop. Changes...

2011-08-30 12:23:50

A team at the Stanford University School of Medicine has cataloged, down to the letter, exactly what parts of the genetic code are essential for survival in one bacterial species, Caulobacter crescentus. They found that 12 percent of the bacteria's genetic material is essential for survival under laboratory conditions. The essential elements included not only protein-coding genes, but also regulatory DNA and, intriguingly, other small DNA segments of unknown function. The other 88 percent...

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2011-08-25 10:38:22

  Why different species have dissimilar sets of chromosomes? Why the differentiated species often conserve apparently identical chromosome complements? Furthermore, why, while chromosome rearrangements can considerably change the course of species evolution, certain variation among individuals and populations of some species persists indefinitely? Such questions motivate researchers to compare chromosomes in closely related species. To understand the nature of chromosome changes in...

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2011-08-24 11:21:58

  An international team of researchers has used ancient DNA to produce compelling evidence that the lack of genetic diversity in modern stallions is the result of the domestication process. The team, which was led by Professor Michi Hofreiter from the University of York, UK, has carried out the first study on Y chromosomal DNA sequences from extinct ancient wild horses and found an abundance of diversity. The results, which are published in Nature Communications, suggest the...

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2011-08-18 13:48:11

When an egg cell is being formed, the cellular machinery which separates chromosomes is extremely imprecise at fishing them out of the cell's interior, scientists at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany, have discovered. The unexpected degree of trial-and-error involved in this process could explain why errors in the number of chromosomes in the egg cell are the leading cause of miscarriages and severe congenital diseases such as trisomies like Down's...


Word of the Day
tessitura
  • The prevailing range of a vocal or instrumental part, within which most of the tones lie.
This word is Italian in origin and comes from the Latin 'textura,' web, structure.