Study reveals a role for jumping genes during times of stress

Only 1 percent of human DNA codes for proteins, and approximately half of the rest of the genome is made up of what used to be called "junk" sequences that can copy themselves into RNA or DNA and jump from one location to ...

'Jumping genes' help stabilize DNA folding patterns

"Jumping genes"—bits of DNA that can move from one spot in the genome to another—are well-known for increasing genetic diversity over the long course of evolution. Now, new research at Washington University School of ...

Myelin is a gift from retroviruses

A viable molecular explanation for the origin of compact myelin of vertebrates has been a long time coming. While many invertebrates are certainly capable of wrapping their axons with crude glial extensions, none can manage ...

Taming the genome's 'jumping' sequences

The human genome is fascinating. Once predicted to contain about a hundred thousand protein-coding genes, it now seems that the number is closer to twenty thousand, and maybe less. And although our genome is made up of about ...

Corn's genetic diversity on display in new genome study

The newly assembled genomes of 26 different genetic lines of corn illustrate the crop's rich genetic diversity and could pave the way for a better understanding of what genetic mechanisms account for crop traits prized by ...

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