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Latest Natural selection Stories

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2010-08-10 09:30:07

A study led by scientists from the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew's Jodrell Laboratory, which focuses on epigenetics in European common marsh orchids, has revealed that some plants may be able to adapt more quickly to environmental change than previously thought. The new study, published in Molecular Biology and Evolution, brings new hope to plant conservation. Epigenetics comprises hidden influences upon gene functions that occur without a change in the DNA sequence, but are potentially...

2010-07-21 15:30:56

Plant scientists at the John Innes Centre have provided a new solution to an old debate on why species hybrids can be more vigourous than their parents. In a study to be published online next week in the online open access journal PLoS Biology, the researchers found a type of genetic "noise" caused by a surprising degree of variation in gene activity even for highly similar traits in closely related species. They found that when species hybridise, some of the variation in gene activity may be...

2010-07-09 08:30:00

ROCHESTER, N.Y., July 9 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- It has been a basic principle of evolution for more than a century that plants and animals can adapt genetically in ways that help them better survive and reproduce. Now, in a paper to be published in the journal Science, University of Rochester biologist John Jaenike and colleagues document a clear example of a new mechanism for evolution. In previous well documented cases of evolution, traits that increase an animal's ability to...

2010-05-10 15:49:09

A new paper by a team of researchers led by University of Notre Dame biologist Jeffrey Feder could herald an important shift in thinking about the genomics of speciation. Titled "Widespread genomic divergence during sympatric speciation," the paper appears in today's edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The prevailing assumption among scientists about how the genomes of newly forming species should differ during the earliest stages of divergence with gene flow...

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2010-05-10 11:05:00

By using entire islands as experimental laboratories, two Dartmouth biologists have performed one of the largest manipulations of natural selection ever conducted in a wild animal population. Their results, published online on May 9 by the journal Nature, show that competition among lizards is more important than predation by birds and snakes when it comes to survival of the fittest lizard. "When Tennyson wrote that nature is 'red in tooth and claw', I think the image in his head was...

2010-04-12 18:15:51

To look at the tobacco budworm moth and its close cousin, you wouldn't be able to tell the fuzzy-looking, fingertip-size moths apart. But put males of each species as far as six car-lengths away from females,  and even in the darkness of midnight they easily find their way to mates from their own species while ignoring females from the other species. Today, the genes that keep the species sexually isolated are no longer a mystery, thanks to research from North Carolina State University...

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2010-04-05 07:49:32

Mothers win the genetic tug of war by producing more sons with larger fathers and more daughters with smaller fathers "Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies." Mother Teresa's words echo throughout the world. They ring particularly true in the biological kingdom among brown anole lizards, as evidenced in research detailed in the April 2 edition of the journal Science. Dartmouth researchers Ryan Calsbeek and Bob Cox study male and female brown anole lizards...

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2010-03-04 14:58:03

Two Dartmouth biologists have found that brown anole lizards make an interesting choice when deciding which males should father their offspring. The females of this species mate with several males, then produce more sons with sperm from large fathers, and more daughters with sperm from smaller fathers. The researchers believe that the lizards do this to ensure that the genes from large fathers are passed on to sons, who stand to benefit from inheriting the genes for large size. The study is...

2010-02-25 10:24:23

The team observed viruses as they evolved over hundreds of generations to infect bacteria. They found that when the bacteria could evolve defenses, the viruses evolved at a quicker rate and generated greater diversity, compared to situations where the bacteria were unable to adapt to the viral infection. The study shows, for the first time, that the American evolutionary biologist Leigh Van Valen was correct in his 'Red Queen Hypothesis'. The theory, first put forward in the 1970s, was named...

2010-02-17 14:07:53

The unexpected discovery of a new type of genetic variation suggests that natural selection "“ the force that drives evolution "“ is both more powerful and more complex than scientists have thought. "We have discovered that natural selection can act not only on whole organisms and individual genes, but also on gene networks," says Antonis Rokas, assistant professor of biological sciences at Vanderbilt University and senior author of the paper reporting the discovery that was...


Word of the Day
baudekin
  • A rich embroidered or brocaded silk fabric woven originally with a warp of gold thread.
'Baudekin' seems to be an alternative form of 'baldachin,' from the Italian 'Baldacco,' Baghdad, the city where the material was made.
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