So-called junk DNA plays critical role in mammalian development

Nearly half of our DNA has been written off as junk, the discards of evolution: Sidelined or broken genes, viruses that got stuck in our genome and were dismembered or silenced, none of it relevant to the human organism or ...

When two worlds meet: A protease that controls small RNA activity

The protection of genome integrity of germ cells is essential for animal fertility. Researchers from the Grosshans group characterized a defense mechanism against selfish genetic elements in the C. elegans germline. They ...

Protecting the genome from transposon activation

Transposons are foreign DNA elements capable of random insertion into the genome, an event that can be very dangerous for a cell. Their activity must be silenced to maintain genomic integrity, which is primarily achieved ...

Scientists investigate epigenetic impact across whole genome

All life depends on a genome, which acts as an instruction manual for building all the products essential for development and survival. But knowing which of these individual instructions—or genes—need to be read, and ...

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