What makes vertebrates special? We can learn from lancelets

Scientists once thought that humans must have 2 million genes to account for all our complexity. But since sequencing the human genome, researchers have learned that humans only have about 19,000 to 25,000 genes—not many ...

Plant characteristics shaped by parental conflict

Different subpopulations of a plant species can have distinct traits, varying in size, seed count, coloration, and so on. The primary source of this variation is genes: different versions of a gene can lead to different traits. ...

Changes to RNA aid the process of learning and memory

RNA carries pieces of instructions encoded in DNA to coordinate the production of proteins that will carry out the work to be done in a cell. But the process isn't always straightforward. Chemical modifications to DNA or ...

Epic genetic: the hidden story of wheat

Globally, wheat, together with maize and rice, provides the most human nutrition. It can thrive in a whole range of different environments, even within a similar geographical region.

Methyl marks on RNA discovered to be key to brain cell connections

Methyl chemical groups dot lengths of DNA, helping to control when certain genes are accessible by a cell. In new research, UCLA scientists have shown that at the connections between brain cells—which often are located ...

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