15 news posts related to Genetics/Genomics

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This tiny coastal fish wears a toothy coat of armor

pacific spinly lumpsucker as viewed from the side

The ocean is full of otherworldly creatures, seemingly from alien planets with alien capabilities. In most cases, the award for craziest looking critter would go to an invertebrate. But many fish are contenders, too, and there’s an oddly adorable one common in northwest waters. What does it look like? Imagine a golf ball. Now put some googly eyes on it and add a suction cup to its belly. 

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Simons Foundation funds fundamental questions in biology

A graphic view of tens of millions of bases of DNA extracted from a marine microbial community found in Puget Sound (photo: Vaughn Iverson)

How do environmental scientists unearth new discoveries about our planet? Many of us might imagine scientists observing the world around them, wading through tide pools or digging up soil. But what about questions surrounding the origins of life on Earth, or questions about microbes deep, deep within the ocean? Big questions like these require big investments, and the Simons Foundation is supporting University of Washington (UW) researchers to find some of the answers. 

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Broccoli in space: How probiotics could help grow veggies in microgravity

A new experiment will test whether microbes can help broccoli grow better in challenging conditions in space.

Astronauts at the International Space Station are spending more time away from Earth, but they still need their daily serving of vegetables. In the quest to find a viable way for crew to grow their own veggies while orbiting, student researchers are sending broccoli seeds coated with a healthy dose of probiotics to space. Six broccoli seeds are aboard the Orbital ATK Cygnus spacecraft that launched last week from Wallops Island, Virginia, as part of a space station cargo resupply mission. 

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Two species of ravens nevermore? New research finds evidence of ‘speciation reversal’

Two ravens sitting on a tree branch.

For over a century, speciation — where one species splits into two — has been a central focus of evolutionary research. But a new study almost 20 years in the making suggests “speciation reversal” — where two distinct lineages hybridize and eventually merge into one — can also be extremely important. The paper, appearing March 2 in Nature Communications, provides some of the strongest evidence yet of the phenomenon in two lineages of common ravens. 

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There's a deeper fish in the sea

Researchers recover a trap after it landed on the bottom of the Mariana Trench.

Meet the deepest fish in the ocean, a new species named the Mariana snailfish by an international team of researchers that discovered it. They’re small, translucent, bereft of scales — and highly adept at living where few other organisms can. The Mariana snailfish (Pseudoliparis swirei) thrives at depths of up to about 8,000 meters (26,200 feet) along the Mariana Trench near Guam. 

Read more at UW Today »