Category: Genetics

The mystery of Irish sadness

Just as diagnosing the reasons why in some countries there are higher rates of suicide than in others it is an undeniable task (due to the multiplicity of interconnected reasons), we also do not know why there are societies much sadder or pessimistic than others. For example, there is the case of Ireland, a society with deep religious roots that, for several generations, has shown one of the highest rates of depression and suicide in the world.
Bad habits are not the only ones that increase the risk of heart disease: also small genetic variations
Bad habits are not the only ones that increase the risk of heart disease: also small genetic variations
Smoking and eating a poor diet are the biggest risks when developing cardiovascular disease. However, there are people who are more susceptible to heart disease due to small genetic variants. Two of these small generic variations that can modulate platelet behavior, and which can therefore affect the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, have now been identified by researchers from the Cardeza Foundation for Genetic Research at Thomas Jefferson University of U.S.
For the first time it is possible to modify the mitochondrial DNA of a plant: the secret of diversity
For the first time it is possible to modify the mitochondrial DNA of a plant: the secret of diversity
Mitochondrial DNA is the genetic material of mitochondria, the organelles that generate energy for the cell, and was discovered in 1963 by Margit M. K. Nass and Sylvan Nass using electron microscopy. Until now, however, it has never been possible to edit this kind of DNA in plants, although it had been achieved in animals: it was published in 2008.
Are societies where more left-handed people live more violent?
Are societies where more left-handed people live more violent?
One of the most violent pre-industrial societies in the world is the Eipo of the mountains of New Guinea. A peculiarity of this society is that it was made up of almost 30 percent left-handed people. Chance? According to a 2005 study, no, it considers that there is a correlation between violent societies and number of left-handed people, that is, societies where there are many people whose predominant hand is the left.
Will natural selection make us short and overweight?
Will natural selection make us short and overweight?
Natural selection operates thanks to two phenomena: inheritable variation and differential reproductive success. In that case, we have to assume that the selection is still operating because these two phenomena take place. Given this, as reproductive success is lower in person who adapt worse to infectious diseases, it could also happen that individuals who have a greater capacity to resist diseases associated with the first world, that is, inactivity, hypercaloric diets and various pollutants, will also be the individuals who are most likely to transmit their genes.
What is Werner syndrome? When you age too fast
What is Werner syndrome? When you age too fast
In addition to the X and Y sex chromosomes, we inherit two copies of each gene in our bodies, one from our mother and one from our father. Werner's syndrome is what is called an autosomal recessive disorder, which means that it is only shown when a person inherits a mutated version of a gene called WRN from both parents.
Not even Darwin believed there were human races
Not even Darwin believed there were human races
Charles Darwin's ideas were too far ahead of his time. Even for himself. After all, Darwin only intuited, perhaps with a mixture of audacity and chance, how the natural world worked, but completely ignored what genes or chromosomes were. When he wrote The Origin of Man, in 1871, for example, his interest focused on elucidating whether human beings, as with any species, descended in some pre-existing way.
This is the creature with the largest animal mitochondrial genome in the world
This is the creature with the largest animal mitochondrial genome in the world
All the complexity of a human organism can be encoded with a lower number of genes than a simple grain of rice. Although nobody gains the number of genes to plants. If we focus on the size of the genome of animals, then, the human being also has a small genome compared to that of a nematode worm.
What is phenotypic plasticity?
What is phenotypic plasticity?
The genotype, together with environmental factors that act on DNA, determines the characteristics of the organism, that is, its phenotype. Therefore, if the genotype can be defined as the set of genes of an organism, the phenotype is the set of features of an organism. On the other hand, the body's ability to adjust its phenotype in response to environmental pressures is formally known as phenotypic plasticity.
The human body is a mosaic complex formed by groups of cells with different genomes
The human body is a mosaic complex formed by groups of cells with different genomes
The largest study to date has just been published and collects data from thousands of samples collected from approximately 500 people, specifically 29 different types of tissue from those people. The data is overwhelming: the human body is a complex mosaic formed by groups of cells with different genomes, and many of these groups have mutations that could contribute to cancer.
Now we can edit stem cells directly in the patient's body
Now we can edit stem cells directly in the patient's body
Currently, repairing the stem cells involves removing them from their hiding places in the deepest part of the body, then genetically altering them and returning them to the patient. However, new research conducted at Harvard University has proven that they can do it in the patient's own body (for now, in mice).
Could bacteria in our stomach be responsible for many cases of autism?
Could bacteria in our stomach be responsible for many cases of autism?
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is closely linked to genes, but a new study tries to clarify why up to 90 percent of cases also have gastrointestinal problems. In just the last thirty years, autism has multiplied by 10: from 4 out of 10.
Despite what the racists say, we are an extraordinarily little diverse species at the genetic level
Despite what the racists say, we are an extraordinarily little diverse species at the genetic level
That if black skin, that if slanted eyes, that if white skin, curly hair, big nose ... all those phenotypic features can be very striking, but they indicate that we are particularly diverse at the genetic level. Rather, we are a very homogeneous species. In addition, the aforementioned features also do not refer to any notable genetic difference: there are more diverse genetics among blacks in the African continent, for example, than between a white and a black.
A single genetic mutation could determine if you perceive the smell that surrounds us just like other people
A single genetic mutation could determine if you perceive the smell that surrounds us just like other people
A team of geneticists led by Casey Trimmer has conducted a curious study with 332 volunteers who were asked to rate almost 70 aromas, many of which were components of the common food additives and aromas. The researchers also tested the limits of detection of subjects, general olfactory acuity and sensitivity to various concentrations of a specific odor.
How agriculture turned us into X-Men
How agriculture turned us into X-Men
Despite the idyllic aura that surrounds agriculture and that connects us to nature, in the purest flower power style, the truth is that it was not only the product of the first genetic engineers in history, but that development affected our Biology and our genome in such a way that we could say that it turned us into X-men.
CRISPR allows to create an antidote against the deadly poison of the jellyfish chest
CRISPR allows to create an antidote against the deadly poison of the jellyfish chest
One of the deadliest creatures we can imagine is the jellyfish chest. Now, researchers from the University of Sydney, Australia, where their bites suffer, have discovered an antidote thanks to the new CRISPR genetic editing techniques. Killing machine The chest jellyfish (Chironex fleckeri) has about 60 tentacles that can grow up to three meters long.
We don't know why black-skinned runners are better than white-skinned ones
We don't know why black-skinned runners are better than white-skinned ones
Although there has been only one white man in the 100-meter Olympic final since Allan Wells won in Moscow in 1980 and that, throughout history, 13 of the 20 best speeds in the 100 least smooth have been obtained by African Americans, we do not know clearly the reason for this trend.
Chinese researchers add gene related to the human brain to the monkey genome in a
Chinese researchers add gene related to the human brain to the monkey genome in a
A team of Chinese researchers has created several transgenic rhesus monkeys by adding a human gene involved in the growth of the human brain to its genome. They are some of the controversial movements that China is making to start using gene editing techniques in humans, both to prevent diseases and to learn more about how the human develops.
The anxiety you suffer now could be inherited by future generations
The anxiety you suffer now could be inherited by future generations
In recent years, researchers have explored the heritability of personality, including outliers such as altruism and shyness. In a recent study with monkeys, led by scientists from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, suggests that anxiety could also be hereditary.
The CRISPR genetic editing tool has allowed to destroy viruses in the genes of African bananas
The CRISPR genetic editing tool has allowed to destroy viruses in the genes of African bananas
CRISPR has been used to destroy a virus that hides within many of the bananas grown in Africa specifically the Gonja Manjaya. The striated banana virus can not only spread from one plant to another by insects like most plant viruses, but also integrates its DNA into the platinum genome.
Genes could be more important to your health than your lifestyle, according to new study
Genes could be more important to your health than your lifestyle, according to new study
We begin again in the eternal debate Nature VS Nurture on the subject of a new study published in Nature Genetics that suggests, thanks also to a large group of twins, that genes have a greater influence on health than lifestyle. In lifestyle, several environmental factors were taken into account, including socio-economic factors.