Genetics

Origin of Anatomically Modern Humans Traced to Southern Africa

The earliest ancestors of anatomically modern Homo sapiens emerged in a region south of the Zambezi River in Botswana, Africa, according to a new analysis of modern human’s mitochondrial genomes (mtDNA or mitogenome) from the L0 lineage, the oldest known mtDNA lineage on Earth. Ancient humans. Image credit: sjs.org / …

Read More »

Researchers Identify 44 Genes Involved in Age-Related Hearing Loss

A team of scientists from King’s College London, University College London and the University of Manchester has identified 44 genes linked to age-related hearing loss. Wells et al performed genome-wide association studies for two self-reported hearing phenotypes, using more than 250,000 UK Biobank volunteers aged between 40 and 69 years. …

Read More »

Researchers Sequence Genomes of Reef-Building Coral and Its Microbial Symbionts

A team of Australian scientists has successfully completed an integrated genomic characterization of a reef-building coral species called Porites lutea and its microbial partners (bacteria, Archaea, algae etc.). Schematic overview of interactions between Porites lutea and its microbial symbionts. Image credit: Robbins et al, doi: 10.1038/s41564-019-0532-4. “Symbiotic relationships are incredibly …

Read More »

Scientists Reconstruct Skeletal Anatomy of Denisovans

A team of researchers from Israel and Spain has produced reconstructions of Denisovans, an extinct sister group of Neanderthals, based on patterns of methylation — chemical changes — in their ancient DNA. A portrait of a juvenile female Denisovan based on a skeletal profile reconstructed from ancient DNA methylation maps. …

Read More »

Researchers Sequence Genomes of All Living Penguin Species

Scientists from the Penguin Genome Consortium have produced 19 high-coverage penguin genome sequences that, together with two previously published genomes, encompass all surviving penguin species. Emperor penguins (Aptenodytes forsteri). Image credit: Michael Van Woert / NOAA / NESDIS / ORA. Penguins (Sphenisciformes) are a remarkable order of flightless wing-propelled diving …

Read More »

Scientists Find Significant Amount of Eel DNA in Loch Ness

An international team of researchers has announced the results of investigations into the environmental DNA (eDNA) present in Loch Ness, a large freshwater lake best known for sightings of the long-necked ‘monster.’ Hoaxed photo of the Loch Ness ‘monster’ from April 21, 1934. “People love a mystery, we’ve used science …

Read More »