How maize makes an antibiotic cocktail

Maize (Zea mays) produces a plethora of antibiotics called zealexins. Even though scientists have identified at least 15 zealexins, they suspect there are even more to find. Zealexins are produced in every corn variety and ...

Evolution in real-time: How bacteria adapt to their hosts

Bacteria that invade animal cells in order to multiply are widespread in nature. Some of these are pathogens of humans and animals. In the environment, they are often found inside unicellular organisms. A research team led ...

How a protein stops cells from attacking their own DNA

Viruses multiply by injecting their DNA into a host cell. Once it enters the intracellular fluid, this foreign material triggers a defense mechanism known as the cGAS-STING pathway. The protein cyclic GMP-AMP Synthase (cGAS), ...

Understanding congenital heart defects, one chicken at a time

Approximately 10 percent of infants are born with a congenital heart defect, with one of the most common being persistent truncus arteriosus—a hole in the heart. In a healthy baby, deoxygenated blood is pumped through a ...

Gene switch ENO identified as a tomato fruit regulator

A team of researchers from Spain, Germany and France has identified the gene switch ENO (excessive number of floral organs) as a tomato fruit regulator. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, ...

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