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Latest Polymorphism Stories

2014-06-24 10:21:05

Washington University in St. Louis Scientists have identified a ‘weakness’ in the clover genome that biases species to evolve the same trait Writing about the weird soft-bodied fossils found in the Burgess Shale in the Canadian Rockies, paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould noted that of 25 initial body plans exhibited by the fossils, all but four were quickly eliminated. If we rewound the tape, he asked, and cast the dice once more, would the same four body plans be selected? He...

2014-05-27 11:56:22

University of Massachusetts at Amherst A new study of how biodiversity arises shows how a mutation in a single gene during development can lead to different consequences not only in jaw shape, but how this leads to different feeding strategies to exploit different ecological niches A new study of how biodiversity arises, by evolutionary biologists at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, shows how a mutation in a single gene during development can lead to different consequences not...

Genetics Also Play A Role In Mate Selection
2014-05-20 11:51:21

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Many of us might think, by looking at friends and family, that people tend to marry someone similar to them – and a new study in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) has found that these similarities often go beyond more than skin deep. According to the study, individuals and their spouses tend to be more genetically similar than they are to randomly chosen people. While previous studies have found that...

Genetic Study Tackles Slow Plant Domestication Mystery
2014-04-18 08:06:55

By Diana Lutz, Washington University in St. Louis Domestication genes tend to be insensitive to the rest of the genome and to the environment. Could finding this subset of robust genes have slowed things down? “The Modern View of Domestication,” a special feature of The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) published April 29, raises a number of startling questions about a transition in our deep history that most of us take for granted. At the end of the last Ice...

Earliest Stick Insect Fossils Discovered
2014-03-20 08:06:36

PLOS Wing shape and coloration pattern suggest plant-mimicking stick insects from the Early Cretaceous An ancient stick insect species may have mimicked plant leaves for defense, according to a paper published in the open-access journal PLOS ONE on March 19, 2014 by Maomin Wang, from Capital Normal University, China and colleagues. Many insects have developed defense mechanisms, including the ability to mimic the surrounding environment. Stick and leaf insects mimic plants from...

A Single Gene Controls Wing Mimicry In Butterflies
2014-03-05 14:04:36

University of Chicago A single gene regulates the complex wing patterns, colors and structures required for mimicry in swallowtail butterflies, report scientists from the University of Chicago, March 5 in Nature. Surprisingly, the gene described, doublesex, is already well-known for its critical role in sexual differentiation in insects. "Conventional wisdom says that it should be multiple genes working together to control the whole wing pattern of a butterfly," said Marcus Kronforst,...

Why Do Women And Men Differ In Height?
2014-02-07 12:41:01

University of Helsinki Researchers from the University of Helsinki analyzed thoroughly the commonly occurring genetic variation in chromosome X, one of the two sex-determining chromosomes, in almost 25,000 Northern European individuals with diverse health-related information available. The aim of the study was to find genetic factors that could explain individual differences in several traits, including BMI, height, blood pressure and lipid levels. In addition, the researchers also...

Engineering Plus Evolutionary Analyses Used To Answer Natural Selection Questions
2014-01-24 14:45:08

University of Massachusetts at Amherst Introducing a new approach that combines evolutionary and engineering analyses to identify the targets of natural selection, researchers report in the current issue of Evolution that the new tool opens a way of discovering evidence for selection for biomechanical function in very diverse organisms and of reconstructing skull shapes in long-extinct ancestral species. Evolutionary biologist Elizabeth Dumont and mechanical engineer Ian Grosse at the...

White-throated Sparrow Study Traces Social Behaviors To Specific Gene
2014-01-15 09:31:53

Emory University A unique study of the white-throated sparrow has identified a biological pathway connecting variation in the birds’ aggression and parenting behaviors in the wild to variation in their genome. The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) is publishing the results of the experiments, conducted by the lab of neuroscientist Donna Maney in Emory University’s Department of Psychology. The research, which comprised behavioral observations of the study...

2014-01-03 15:49:03

Scientists have discovered a mutation with a built-in dilemma for dairy cattle breeders. The deleted gene sequence has a positive effect on milk yield but causes embryonic death in dairy cattle. Scientists have found a genomic deletion that affects fertility and milk yield in dairy cattle at the same time. The discovery can help explain a dilemma in dairy cattle breeding: the negative correlation between fertility and milk production. For the past many years milk yield in Scandinavian...


Latest Polymorphism Reference Libraries

Grove Snail, Cepaea nemoralis
2013-10-14 10:20:27

The Grove Snail (Cepaea nemoralis) is a species of air-breathing land snail, a terrestrial pulmonate gastropod mollusk. It is one of the most common species of land snail within Europe and has been introduced to North America. C. nemoralis is the type species regarding the genus Cepaea. It is used as a model organism in citizen science projects. This snail species is among the largest due to its polymorphism and bright colors. The color of the shell is very variable, reddish, yellow,...

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Word of the Day
mundungus
  • A stinking tobacco.
  • Offal; waste animal product; organic matter unfit for consumption.
This word comes from the Spanish 'mondongo,' tripe, entrails.