Tag Archives: genetics

Where Did Corn Come From?

All the plants and animals we eat and use came from somewhere. Chickens are related to a bird in Southeast Asia; wheat comes from some kind of middle Eastern grass. Years ago, genetic research found that corn’s closest ancestor was … Continue reading

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A Radio Leads to a Science Career

How does owning a radio get you a career in research science at a university? Well, you’ll just have to read my story in George Washington University’s Health + Medicine magazine to find out. It’s a profile of Sidney Fu, … Continue reading

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snow leopard scat

Proving yet again that I am the go-to writer for all your poop news needs, I wrote a brief item that appeared on ScienceNOW yesterday about studying snow leopard diet through DNA analysis of their feces. The study found that … Continue reading

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giant marine virus

For ScienceNOW this week I wrote about a giant virus that lives in the ocean. Viruses are generally thought of as teeny little things that can’t do much for themselves, but this one has 730,000 base pairs of DNA – … Continue reading

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are you my mother?

So, it turns out, “Thoroughbred” isn’t just something you say about horses that have a known lineage; it’s a particular breed. There are tons of horse breeds, like Clydesdale and Barb and Arabian and Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse. Thoroughbreds are … Continue reading

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sled dogs are sled dogs

A new genetic study finds that Alaskan sled dogs, the mutts that pull sleds, are actually their own breed. Despite coming in all sizes, coat lengths, and ear shapes. The people who breed Alaskan sled dogs feel free to mix … Continue reading

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lucky clover

Some scientists at the University of Georgia are working on what sounds like a kind of goofy project: making ornamental clovers. They swear they’re very pretty plants – lush green, with red and white markings. And they fix nitrogen, so … Continue reading

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stress and death

For this week’s issue of the Chronicle of Higher Education, I wrote a story about a molecular link between stress and death. The story is here. Ok, there’s a catch: You have to be a subscriber to read it, and … Continue reading

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test tube babies

Last weekend I wrote a blog post for ScienceNOW about whether “test tube” babies are healthy. Answer: Basically, yes, but the oldest one is only 31, so there’s no way to know about health effects that show up later in … Continue reading

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making the world more colorful

For today’s Welt I wrote about colorblind monkeys – scientists cured them of their colorblindness with gene therapy. “Cured” is kind of a silly word in this case. The males of this species naturally don’t see red and green, so … Continue reading

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