The existence of transgenerational epigenetic inheritance has now been demonstrated among Drosophila fruit flies. By temporarily modifying the function of Polycomb Group (PcG) proteins--which play an essential role in development--the researchers obtained fruit fly lines having the same DNA sequence but different eye colors. An example of epigenetic inheritance, this color diversity reflects varying degrees of heritable, but reversible, gene repression by PcG proteins. It is observed in both transgenic and wild-type lines and can be modified by environmental conditions such as ambient temperature.
Bacterial symbionts transition between plant pathogenicity and insect defensive mutualism, a new report demonstrates. The bacterium Burkholderia gladioli lives in specific organs of a plant-feeding beetle and defends the insect's eggs from detrimental fungi by producing antibiotics. However, when transferred to a plant, the bacterium can spread throughout the tissues and negatively affect the plant.
Researchers have used a nanosecond pulsed electric field to extract hydrocarbons from microalgae. By using the shorter duration pulse, they were able to extract a large amount of hydrocarbons from the microalgae in a shorter amount of time, using less energy, and in a more efficient manner than current methods.
Zika virus can persist in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), lymph nodes and colorectal tissue of infected rhesus monkeys for weeks after the virus has been cleared from blood, urine and mucosal secretions, according to a study.
Recent years have witnessed significant debates on proteins in milk, in particular the differences between A1 and A2 proteins. However, there is still no scientific evidence to determine whether milk with one protein type is healthier than the other.
While increased carbon dioxide levels theoretically boost the productivity of nitrogen-fixing bacteria in the world's oceans, because of its 'fertilizing' effect, a new study reveals how increasingly acidic seawater featuring higher levels of this gas can overwhelm these benefits, hampering the essential service these bacteria provide for marine life.
In experiments on transport tissues in plants, researchers were able to identify factors of crucial importance for the formation of the plant tissue known as phloem. These factors differ from all previously known factors that trigger the specification of cells. The findings substantially expand our understanding of the metabolic processes in plants.
A new study unveils the secrets of horse breeding by Iron Age Scythian nomads. The genomes reconstructed from 14 archaeological horses also provide important insights into the process of animal domestication, supporting changes in the neural crest development pathway as key to the emergence of common domestic traits and revealing major changes in breeding practice during the last 2,300 years.
The collection of microbial species found in the human body varies from person to person, and new research suggests that a significant part of this variation can be explained by variability in shared resources available to the microbes.
A method to rapidly trigger the universal tagging of proteins being produced by a cell has now been discovered by researchers. The tagging can be turned on like a switch, which enables researchers to acquire a snapshot of proteins being produced by a cell at a given time.
Our bodies are constantly under siege by foreign invaders; viruses, bacteria and parasites that want to infiltrate our cells. Using rooster testes, scientists shed light on how germ cells -- sperm and egg -- protect themselves from viruses so that they can pass accurate genetic information to the next generation. The findings could help researchers better fight viruses in chickens and in people.
Some mushrooms produce long-chain unsaturated carboxylic acids as their chemical defense against insect larvae. The biosynthesis of these polyenes relies on only one enzyme, as scientists have now discovered. They report the unprecedented multiple double-bond-shifting activity by the enzyme, which is representative of a yet uncharacterized phylogenetic clade of polyketide synthases.
Animals can match their background to avoid detection by predators. For instance, numerous species have evolved color patterns that help them blend into their surroundings and avoid predators -- a phenomenon called crypsis. A new experimental study found that ghost crabs in the Solomon Islands may achieve crypsis by actively choosing to live in sand background that matches their body color.
The cold-water coral Lophelia pertusa is able to counteract negative effects of ocean acidification under controlled laboratory conditions when water temperature rises by a few degrees at the same time. Whether this will also be possible in the natural habitat depends on the degree of change in environmental conditions, researchers argue in a publication.
Two new species of African mole-rat have been discovered by researchers. The species, formally described as Fukomys hanangensis and Fukomys livingstoni, were found around Mount Hanang and at Ujiji on the shores of Lake Tanganyika, both in Tanzania.
Many Canadian lakes can provide new insights into ancient oceans, a team of researchers has discovered, and these findings could advance research about greenhouse gas emissions, harmful algal blooms, and early life forms.
In the spring when water temperatures start to rise, rainbow trout that have spent several years at sea traveling hundreds of miles from home manage, without maps or GPS, to find their way back to the rivers and streams where they were born for spawning. Researchers have identified genes that enable the fish to perform this extraordinary homing feat with help from Earth's magnetic field.