Genetics News -- ScienceDaily Genetics research. Read the latest news on plant and animal genetics from universities and research institutes around the world.

  • Consuming low-calorie sweeteners may predispose overweight individuals to diabetes
    on March 18, 2018 at 6:48 pm

    Consumption of low-calorie sweeteners could promote metabolic syndrome and predispose people to prediabetes and diabetes, particularly in individuals with obesity, a new study on human fat-derived stem cells and fat samples suggests. […]

  • New understanding of parasite biology might help stop malaria transmission
    on March 15, 2018 at 6:12 pm

    Researchers made an important step toward deeper understanding of how malaria blood stage parasites turn the switch to become transmissible to other humans. This knowledge is fundamental for future research aiming to interrupt malaria transmission. […]

  • Democratizing single-cell analysis
    on March 15, 2018 at 6:12 pm

    Scientists have developed a new low-cost technique for profiling gene expression in hundreds of thousands of cells. […]

  • How royal jelly helps honeybee larvae defy gravity and become queens
    on March 15, 2018 at 6:07 pm

    Honeybee larvae develop into queen bees if they are fed large quantities of a food called royal jelly. But royal jelly does more than determine whether a larva becomes a queen: it also keeps her safely anchored to the roof of the queen cell in which she develops. Research explains how the pH of royal jelly helps make the substance viscous enough to keep the queen-to-be from falling. […]

  • Scientists map the portal to the cell's nucleus
    on March 15, 2018 at 5:07 pm

    The gateway to cellular headquarters has 552 components. A new map that shows how all these pieces fit together could help scientists study numerous diseases. […]

  • Molecular basis of major antibiotic resistance transfer mechanism unraveled
    on March 15, 2018 at 4:29 pm

    One of the biggest current threats to global health is the rise of multi-drug resistant bacteria, caused by the spreading of antibiotic resistance amongst them. In an attempt to help fight this threat, researchers have unraveled the molecular basis of a major antibiotic resistance transfer mechanism. They also developed molecules and a proof-of-principle for blocking this transfer. […]

  • Biologists unravel another mystery of what makes DNA go 'loopy'
    on March 15, 2018 at 4:29 pm

    New research shows that a process known as hemimethylation plays a role in looping DNA in a specific way. Researchers also demonstrated that hemimethylation is maintained deliberately -- not through random mistakes as previously thought -- and is passed down through human cell generations. […]

  • How cells protect themselves against mechanical stress
    on March 15, 2018 at 4:29 pm

    The Piezo1 and Piezo2 ion channels are known to open up response to the slightest mechanical stimulus. Researchers have now discovered that the channels are also sensitive to changes in membrane voltage. The voltage sensitivity appears to be an ancient property of these channels that protects cells from mechanical stress. […]

  • Viral hideout: After infection, herpes lurks in nerve cells
    on March 15, 2018 at 1:38 pm

    The ability of the 'cold sore' herpes simplex virus to establish quiet infections and reawaken periodically has long mystified scientists. A new study in mice reveals that a key host protein acts as a critical regulator of the virus's sleep-wake cycle. […]

  • How fungi grow: A movie from inside the cell
    on March 15, 2018 at 1:18 pm

    Fungi forming mold on food are hazardous. Fungi supplying antibiotics are beneficial. Fungi may be harmful pathogens. On the other hand, they are used for the production of food or medicine and in bioengineering. In either case, it is required to precisely understand their growth mechanism. Researchers have now taken a big step forward: Using high-performance light microscopy, they watched mold fungi as they grew in the cell. […]

  • Keeping plant-cell motors on track
    on March 15, 2018 at 1:13 pm

    In a growing plant cell, motor proteins called kinesins work as transporters that haul materials built in one part of the cell to the place where they are needed. Now, biologists have discovered the molecular brakeman that holds kinesins in check until their cargo is needed. […]

  • Chromatin usage in individual cells reveals developmental trajectories
    on March 14, 2018 at 6:50 pm

    Both cell type and developmental stage can be deduced from measurements of chromatin accessibility in thousands of single cells, researchers show. They used this approach to uncover how cells in developing embryos regulate their identity as they decide what kind of cell to become. […]

  • Molecular motor mystery solved: Novel protein rounds out plant cells' machinery
    on March 14, 2018 at 6:49 pm

    Biophysicists and a plant biologists have discovered a novel motor protein that significantly expands current understanding of the evolution and design principle of motor proteins. […]

  • Cells stressed out? Make mitochondria longer
    on March 14, 2018 at 4:02 pm

    Scientists investigate a phenomenon that may guard against disease as we age. […]

  • Male loggerhead turtles also go back to their nesting beaches to breed
    on March 14, 2018 at 1:27 pm

    Most male loggerhead turtles go back to the nesting beaches to breed –- a common behavior among female turtles --, according to a new study. […]

  • Tasty superfood from plant cell cultures
    on March 14, 2018 at 1:26 pm

    Researchers are developing a new and promising method of producing healthy and tasty plant-based food through plant cell culture (PCC) technology rather than field cultivation. The development work was elevated to a whole new level by a study on the nutritional properties of PCCs grown from cloudberry, lingonberry and stoneberry. Their nutritional value was proven to be much higher than anticipated, in addition to having a nice sensory profile. […]

  • Scientists search for the clocks behind aging brain disorders
    on March 14, 2018 at 1:22 pm

    To understand the link between aging and neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease, scientists compared the genetic clocks that tick during the lives of normal and mutant flies. They found that altering the activity of a gene called Cdk5 appeared to make the clocks run faster than normal, and the flies older than their chronological age. This caused the flies to have problems walking or flying later in life, to show signs of neurodegeneration, and to die earlier. […]

  • Molecule that gives energy-burning brown fat its identity could lead to drugs for obesity
    on March 13, 2018 at 7:21 pm

    A protein found in brown fat, but not typical white fat, is key to how the energy-burning brown fat cells function. […]

  • Mesenchymal stem cell therapy: Holding promise for feline inflammatory diseases
    on March 13, 2018 at 3:35 pm

    Stem cell therapy is acknowledged as having great potential for the treatment of a variety of diseases in both people and animals. The use of bone marrow-derived stem cells is well established in the treatment of human cancer patients, and veterinary applications for bone marrow- and adipose-derived stem cells are being evaluated. […]

  • A new twist to an old story of cellular signaling in the eye of a fly
    on March 13, 2018 at 2:16 pm

    The regeneration of a signaling molecule, phosphatidylinositol 4,5 bisphosphate (PIP2), is not as simple as it was thought to be. Experimental work and mathematical modelling show that the decades-old model of the biochemical cycle may have two unknown steps that could change the way scientists interpret experimental data. […]

  • Artificial and biological cells work together as mini chemical factories
    on March 13, 2018 at 1:18 pm

    Researchers have fused living and non-living cells for the first time in a way that allows them to work together, paving the way for new applications. […]

  • Engineers create most efficient red light-activated optogenetic switch for mammalian cells
    on March 13, 2018 at 12:41 pm

    Researchers have developed a light-activated switch that can turn genes on and off in mammalian cells. This is the most efficient so-called 'optogenetic switch' activated by red and far-red light that has been successfully designed and tested in animal cells -- and it doesn't require the addition of sensing molecules from outside the cells. […]

  • Mutating Ebola's key protein may stop replication
    on March 12, 2018 at 7:54 pm

    Researchers were able to mutate Viral Protein 40 (VP40) in a way that changed the residues of the protein, blocking the budding and replication of Ebola virus in a model system. […]

  • Key step in viral replication
    on March 12, 2018 at 5:29 pm

    Researchers showed how a common virus hijacks a host cell's protein to assemble new viruses. […]

  • Plants overcome hunger with the aid of autophagy
    on March 12, 2018 at 2:40 pm

    Researchers have found that plants activate autophagy in their leaf cells to derive amino acids that are used for survival under energy-starved 'hunger' conditions. The findings show that amino acid utilization in plants can be controlled by the manipulation of autophagy. […]

  • Defect in cells' antenna linked to deformed organs in zebrafish
    on March 9, 2018 at 3:47 pm

    A protein at the base of the 'antenna' of many of the body's cells is vital to a crucial type of cell signal and to whether organs like the heart develop correctly, a test with zebrafish shows. […]

  • Heat shock system helps bug come back to life after drying up
    on March 9, 2018 at 2:54 pm

    The larva of the sleeping chironomid, Polypedilum vanderplanki -- a mosquito-like insect that inhabits semi-arid areas of Africa -- is well known for being able to come back to life after being nearly completely desiccated, losing up to 97 percent of its body's water content. Now, researchers have discovered that a gene called heat shock factor -- which is present in some form in nearly all living organisms on earth -- has been coopted by the species to survive desiccation. […]

  • Formation of bacterial spores
    on March 8, 2018 at 9:15 pm

    Bacterial spores store information about the individual growth history of their progenitor cells, thus retaining a "memory" that links the different stages of the bacterial life cycle. The spore memory could give rise to various adaptive behaviors in microbes. […]

  • The 'architecture of life' described by computer modeling
    on March 8, 2018 at 8:32 pm

    While most of biology and medicine focus on the key roles genes and chemicals play in living systems, the spatial arrangement of the components that make up those systems and the physical forces they experience are being increasingly recognized as equally important. […]

  • New way found to defeat HIV latency
    on March 8, 2018 at 7:31 pm

    Researchers have found a mechanism for making HIV come out of hiding and become susceptible to anti-HIV drugs. […]