16 posts tagged with Genetics by homunculus.
Displaying 1 through 16 of 16.
The Mammoth Cometh. "Bringing extinct animals back to life is really happening — and it’s going to be very, very cool. Unless it ends up being very, very bad." [Previously, Via]
Hacking the President’s DNA. "The U.S. government is surreptitiously collecting the DNA of world leaders, and is reportedly protecting that of Barack Obama. Decoded, these genetic blueprints could provide compromising information. In the not-too-distant future, they may provide something more as well—the basis for the creation of personalized bioweapons that could take down a president and leave no trace."
NASA Proves Building Blocks Of DNA Come From Space. "NASA researchers studying meteorites have found that they contain several of the components needed to make DNA on Earth. The discovery provides support for the idea that the building blocks for DNA were likely created in space, and carried to Earth on objects, like meteorites, that crashed into the planet’s surface. According to the theory, the ready-made DNA parts could have then assembled under Earth’s early conditions to create the first DNA."
Tibetans May Be Fastest Evolutionary Adapters Ever. "A group of scientists in China, Denmark and the U.S. recently documented the fastest genetic change observed in humans. According to their findings, Tibetan adaption to high altitude might have taken just 3,000 years. That's a flash, in terms of evolutionary time, but it's one that's in dispute."
The universal grammar of birdsong is genetically encoded. "A new study, published online in the journal Nature, shows that the songs of isolated zebra finches evolve over multiple generations to resemble those of birds in natural colonies. These findings show that song learning in birds is not purely the product of nurture, but has a strong genetic basis, and suggest that bird song has a universal grammar, or an intrinsic structure which is present at birth."
My Genome, My Self: Steven Pinker considers what we can expect from personal genomics. Searching for Intelligence in Our Genes: Carl Zimmer looks at the hunt to learn about the role of genes in intelligence.
Now: The Rest of the Genome. "Only 1 percent of the genome is made up of classic genes. Scientists are exploring the other 99 percent and uncovering new secrets and new questions."
How We Evolve: "A growing number of scientists argue that human culture itself has become the foremost agent of biological change, making us — for the past 10,000 years or so — the inadvertent architects of our own future selves." [more inside]
U.S. military practices genetic discrimination in denying benefits. "Those medically discharged with genetic diseases are left without disability or retirement benefits. Some are fighting back."
Adam and His Eves. Genetic research suggests that polygyny was the norm for most of humanity's past. [Via the Intersection.]
Craig Venter is on an expedition to collect the DNA of everything on the planet and sequence the genome of Mother Earth.
Making the Mind. "The general outlines of how genes build the brain are finally becoming clear, and we are also starting to see how, in forming the brain, genes make room for the environment’s essential role. While vast amounts of work remain to be done, it is becoming equally clear that understanding the coordination of nature and nurture will require letting go of some long-held beliefs."
"We are becoming the masters of our own DNA. But does that give us the right to decide that my children should never have been born?" John Sundman is a science fiction novelist and the father of two children with severe medical conditions. In this two-part article he shares his experiences and thoughts on bioethics, the Human Genome Project and whether genetics research is paving the way for a resurgent eugenics movement.
The Icelandic company Decode Genetics may have the lead in creating a catalog of the deviant genes that cause most diseases. Led by Dr. Kari Stefansson, the project uses a novel combination of genotyping living Icelanders and comparing the results to Iceland's unique genealogical database that extends back 1100 years. With Iceland's other project to completely switch from fossil feuls to hydrogen power, my admiration for that island of Vikings keeps growing stronger. (2nd and 3rd links are nytimes, free registration required).
A procedure known as haploidisation could allow lesbian couples to have a baby that shares both their genes. The procedure may be available in 18 months' time. Sperm? We don't need no stinking sperm!