Scientists Have Transplanted Mammoth DNA Into Elephant Cells

For the first time in over 3,000 years, the functional components of wooly mammoth DNA have been brought to life (albeit in a petri dish). The achievement represents an important step towards potential efforts to bring the extinct species back. » 3/23/15 12:20pm 3/23/15 12:20pm

No, The Yeti Legend Was Not Inspired By a Prehistoric Bear

A couple of years ago, a DNA analysis of an ostensible sample of Yeti hair indicated that it may have belonged to a previously undiscovered ancestor of modern bears. A new genetic analysis now refutes this claim. » 3/16/15 12:20pm 3/16/15 12:20pm

This Paper About Tongues and Genetics Fooled the Whole World

Rolling your tongue is not a genetic trait. Most of the people reading this were told, at some point during their schooling, that it was. At last you can read the paper that started the myth, and find out how quickly it was disproved. » 3/09/15 11:20am 3/09/15 11:20am

The Top 10 Emerging Technologies Of 2015

Bernard Meyerson, chief innovation officer of IBM and chair of the World Economic Forum's Meta-Council on Emerging Technologies, today published the Meta-Council's list of the Top 10 Emerging Technologies of 2015. » 3/04/15 6:00pm 3/04/15 6:00pm

European Beavers Mate For Life; North American Beavers Prefer Free Love

European beavers mate for life, and remain faithful to their partners. North American beavers? Not so much. What's the reason behind this discrepancy ... and which of the two beaver species has the greater advantage? » 3/01/15 12:50pm 3/01/15 12:50pm

Friendship Is More Powerful Than We Ever Imagined

Friendship is powerful — everything from pop culture tells us so. But how powerful is it? Turns out that friendship has all sorts of properties, that include making you healthier, increasing your self-awareness and helping you accomplish way more. Here are all the ways science proves that friendship really is magic. » 2/27/15 11:14am 2/27/15 11:14am

After Thousands of Years, Earth's Frozen Life Forms Are Waking Up

What's happening in Siberia's thawing permafrost and Greenland's melting glaciers sounds borderline supernatural. Ancient viruses, bacteria, plants, and even animals have been cryogenically frozen there for millennia—and now, they are waking up. » 2/23/15 2:50pm 2/23/15 2:50pm

23andMe Gets FDA Approval For One Very Particular Genetic Test

Back in 2013, the FDA forced 23andme to pull its DNA testing kits in the United States, saying the personal genetics company was offering an untested diagnostic device. Now the FDA has given the okay for 23andme to test for one specific genetic disorder — a potential sign that the company's full offering may stage a… » 2/20/15 1:40pm 2/20/15 1:40pm

Kale, Cauliflower, And Collards All Belong To The Same Species 

The species? Brassica oleracea. Its other varieties include cabbage, broccoli, savoy, kohlrabi and Brussels sprouts, to name just a few commercially relevant examples. How did one species of plant come to be so diverse? Selective human breeding and exceptional genetic diversity. » 2/19/15 9:40am 2/19/15 9:40am

A new study has shown that pregnant mice can pass traits to offspring through bacterial DNA. The discovery means scientists will have to increasingly consider the role of microbes when working to understand how genes influence illness and health. » 2/17/15 2:40pm 2/17/15 2:40pm

Confirmation That Photosynthesizing Sea Slugs Steal Genes From Algae

For decades, scientists have puzzled over how a certain sea slug acquires the ability to photosynthesize after ingesting algae. An advanced imaging technique now confirms that the slugs are literally stealing genes from the algae. It's considered the first example of "horizontal gene transfer" in a multicellular… » 2/04/15 7:40am 2/04/15 7:40am

Why Do Birds Have ZW Sex Chromosomes Instead Of XY?

Your sex characteristics were determined by X and Y chromosomes, same as most other creatures from humans to fruit flies. So why do birds and butterflies have ZW chromosomes instead? And more importantly, why does ZW produce a female bird while ZZ produces a male? » 1/29/15 11:23am 1/29/15 11:23am

Genghis Khan's genetic legacy endures in the Y-chromosomes of millions of male descendants. Now, researchers have found evidence for the existence of ten other men who may have founded highly successful Y-chromosome lineages in Asia, beginning as early as 2100 B.C. Nature's Ewen Calloway has the details. » 1/28/15 6:00pm 1/28/15 6:00pm

New Technique Allows Bioengineers To "Reprogram" Genetic Code

Scientists at Stanford University have found a way to program DNA in such a way that genes can be turned on or off in living cells. Incredibly, the new tool can affect two different genes at the same time, an advance that will allow scientists to treat even the most complex genetic disorders. » 1/28/15 1:20pm 1/28/15 1:20pm

A Patrilineal Map of the World

While doing some independent research of my own on the world's genetic diversity, I found this map of the world's primary Y-chromosomal haplogroups and thought I'd share it. Given some of my prior discussions of race and ethnicity, I felt it might be of interest. » 1/24/15 3:05pm 1/24/15 3:05pm

How Obama's Precision Medicine Initiative Will Revolutionize Healthcare

During last night's State of the Union Address, President Barack Obama called for a new initiative to fund precision medicine. Here's what the proposed initiative entails and what it could mean to your health. » 1/21/15 12:30pm 1/21/15 12:30pm

Scientists Recreate a Really Sad Greek Myth With Worms

This worm is in a Greek myth, and not the fun Greek myth where people get knocked up by rain. It's in a depressing, ironic Greek myth that instructs people not to reach for the power of the gods. » 1/21/15 10:37am 1/21/15 10:37am

80% Of Americans Support Mandatory Labels On Foods Containing DNA. DNA!

A recent survey conducted by the Oklahoma State University Department of Agricultural Economics found that 80.44% of respondents supported a government policy mandating labels on foods containing DNA. Not GMOs. DNA, the genetic material contained in every living thing known to science and practically every food,… » 1/18/15 11:08am 1/18/15 11:08am

A Family in Spain Displayed Three Generations of the "Habsburg Jaw"

The Habsburgs were a dynasty that brought suffering, and eventual ruin, on themselves through inbreeding. Their most famous feature was the "Habsburg Jaw." In the 1980s, a family in Spain with similar facial features gave scientists a better look at a very old genetics puzzle. » 1/15/15 1:20pm 1/15/15 1:20pm