The secret behind the power of bacterial sex discovered

Migration between different communities of bacteria is the key to the type of gene transfer that can lead to the spread of traits such as antibiotic resistance, according to researchers at Oxford University.

Explainer: What is the molecular clock?

In the 150 years since Charles Darwin recognised the kinship of all life, scientists have worked to fulfil his dream of a complete Tree of Life. Today, the methods used to trace the evolutionary branches back through time ...

Why GM food is so hard to sell to a wary public

Whether commanding the attention of rock star Neil Young or apparently being supported by the former head of Greenpeace, genetically modified food is almost always in the news – and often in a negative light.

Some genes 'foreign' in origin and not from our ancestors

Many animals, including humans, acquired essential 'foreign' genes from microorganisms co-habiting their environment in ancient times, according to research published in the open access journal Genome Biology. The study challenges ...

Understanding the personalities of bacteria

Bacteria are as individual as people, according to new research by Professor Peter Young and his team in the Department of Biology at the University of York. Bacteria are essential to health, agriculture and the environment, ...

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