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Latest Mobile genetic elements Stories

2014-06-28 11:58:41

Rockefeller University Genomic sequencing is supposed to reveal the entire genetic makeup of an organism. For infectious disease specialists, the technology can be used to analyze a disease-causing bacterium to determine how much harm it is capable of causing and whether or not it will be resistant to antibiotics. But new research at Rockefeller University suggests that current sequencing protocols overlook crucial bits of information: isolated pieces of DNA floating outside the bacterial...

2014-06-10 13:27:17

Duke University Ubiquitous protein controls copying of resistant DNA Staph infections that become resistant to multiple antibiotics don't happen because the bacteria themselves adapt to the drugs, but because of a kind of genetic parasite they carry called a plasmid that helps its host survive the antibiotics. Plasmids are rings of bare DNA containing a handful of genes that are essentially freeloaders, borrowing most of what they need to live from their bacterial host. The plasmids...

Edited RNA Plus Invasive DNA Add Individuality
2013-11-08 08:19:46

Brown University A study in Nature Communications finds that an enzyme that edits RNA may loosen the genome’s control over invasive snippets of DNA that affect how genes are expressed. In fruit flies, that newly understood mechanism appears to contribute to differences among individuals such as eye color and life span. The story of why we are all so different goes well beyond the endless mixing and matching of DNA through breeding. A new study in the journal Nature Communications, for...

2013-08-15 21:03:58

UC Riverside geneticists show the COPIA-R7 transposon enhances the immunity of its host against a pathogenic microorganism Transposons are DNA elements that can multiply and change their location within an organism's genome. Discovered in the 1940s, for years they were thought to be unimportant and were called "junk DNA." Also referred to as transposable elements and jumping genes, they are snippets of "selfish DNA" that spread in their host genomes serving no other biological purpose but...

2012-06-29 10:42:42

Genetic engineers and genomics researchers should welcome the news from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) where an international team of scientists has discovered a new and possibly more effective means of editing genomes. This discovery holds potentially big implications for advanced biofuels and therapeutic drugs, as genetically modified microorganisms, such as bacteria and fungi, are expected to play a key role in the green chemistry production of these and other...

LSU Research Finds Orangutans Host Ancient Jumping Genes
2012-05-07 14:34:59

LSU´s Mark Batzer, along with research associate Jerilyn Walker and assistant professor Miriam Konkel, have published research determining that modern-day orangutans are host to ancient jumping genes called Alu, which are more than 16 million years old. The study was done in collaboration with the Zoological Society of San Diego and the Institute of Systems Biology in Seattle and is featured in the new open access journal Mobile DNA. These tiny pieces of mobile DNA are able to copy...

2012-02-16 14:46:21

Worth EUR 1.94 million Dr. Zsuzsanna Izsvák, research group leader at the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine (MDC) Berlin-Buch, has been named recipient of a European Research Council (ERC Advanced) grant worth EUR 1.94 million for her research on "jumping genes" (transposons). With the aid of the ERC grant, in the next five years she will focus on investigating how mobile DNA elements (transposons) influence the pathogenesis of cancer and other...

2012-02-10 16:07:01

Rice University undergraduate simplifies tool for biomolecular research A Rice University undergraduate will depart with not only a degree but also a possible patent for his invention of an efficient way to create protein libraries, an important component of biomolecular research. Rice senior Manan Mehta discovered a method to create libraries of "circularly permuted" proteins at the suggestion of his mentor, bioengineer Jonathan Silberg. The research was reported this week in the...

2012-02-03 19:00:17

Many living organisms suffer from parasites, which use the hosts´ resources for their own purposes. The problem of parasitism occurs at all levels right down to the DNA scale.  Genomes may contain up to 80% “foreign” DNA but details of the mechanisms by which this enters the host genome and how hosts attempt to combat its spread are still the subject of conjecture.  Important new information comes from the group of Christian Schlötterer at the...


Word of the Day
kenspeckle
  • Having so marked an appearance as easily to be recognized.
This word may come from the Swedish 'kanspak,' quick at recognizing persons or things, or else from confusion with 'conspicuous.'