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New Scientist Live: the sophisticated home life of Neanderthals

Genetics - вт, 2018-08-14 16:10
We once thought Neanderthals were less advanced than humans, but Matt Pope will argue at New Scientist Live that Neanderthal families lived rich domestic lives
Категории: Biology

New Scientist Live: the sophisticated home life of Neanderthals

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - вт, 2018-08-14 16:10
We once thought Neanderthals were less advanced than humans, but Matt Pope will argue at New Scientist Live that Neanderthal families lived rich domestic lives
Категории: Science and society

DeepMind’s AI can spot eye disease just as well as top doctors

Genetics - вт, 2018-08-14 15:33
DeepMind's system trains on eye scan data taken from thousands of NHS patients and determines which should be seen sooner
Категории: Biology

DeepMind’s AI can spot eye disease just as well as top doctors

HIV and AIDS - вт, 2018-08-14 15:33
DeepMind's system trains on eye scan data taken from thousands of NHS patients and determines which should be seen sooner
Категории: Healthcare, Science and society

DeepMind’s AI can spot eye disease just as well as top doctors

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - вт, 2018-08-14 15:33
DeepMind's system trains on eye scan data taken from thousands of NHS patients and determines which should be seen sooner
Категории: Science and society

Why allergies aren’t nuts at all

Genetics - вт, 2018-08-14 11:00
Faced with airline peanut bans, it’s easy to dismiss allergies as imaginary modern maladies. They’re not – and we need to understand why they’re on the up
Категории: Biology

Why allergies aren’t nuts at all

HIV and AIDS - вт, 2018-08-14 11:00
Faced with airline peanut bans, it’s easy to dismiss allergies as imaginary modern maladies. They’re not – and we need to understand why they’re on the up
Категории: Healthcare, Science and society

Why allergies aren’t nuts at all

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - вт, 2018-08-14 11:00
Faced with airline peanut bans, it’s easy to dismiss allergies as imaginary modern maladies. They’re not – and we need to understand why they’re on the up
Категории: Science and society

Google just made it much harder to build a serious quantum computer

Genetics - вт, 2018-08-14 10:00
To reach quantum supremacy, a quantum computer has to do a task no ordinary computer can. Google has made that harder with an algorithm that beefs up regular PCs
Категории: Biology

Google just made it much harder to build a serious quantum computer

HIV and AIDS - вт, 2018-08-14 10:00
To reach quantum supremacy, a quantum computer has to do a task no ordinary computer can. Google has made that harder with an algorithm that beefs up regular PCs
Категории: Healthcare, Science and society

Google just made it much harder to build a serious quantum computer

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - вт, 2018-08-14 10:00
To reach quantum supremacy, a quantum computer has to do a task no ordinary computer can. Google has made that harder with an algorithm that beefs up regular PCs
Категории: Science and society

Master mimic insect is indistinguishable from a leaf on forest floor

Genetics - вт, 2018-08-14 09:00
Panama's Cocobolo Nature Reserve is a crucial pit stop for migratory species and holds a huge array of wildlife, including this master of disguise: a leaf-mimic katydid
Категории: Biology

Master mimic insect is indistinguishable from a leaf on forest floor

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - вт, 2018-08-14 09:00
Panama's Cocobolo Nature Reserve is a crucial pit stop for migratory species and holds a huge array of wildlife, including this master of disguise: a leaf-mimic katydid
Категории: Science and society

Why are RNA virus mutation rates so damn high?

PLOS Biology (new articles) - пн, 2018-08-13 23:00

by Siobain Duffy

The high mutation rate of RNA viruses is credited with their evolvability and virulence. This Primer, however, discusses recent evidence that this is, in part, a byproduct of selection for faster genomic replication.
Категории: Biology, Journals

Evolutionary diversification of the HAP2 membrane insertion motifs to drive gamete fusion across eukaryotes

PLOS Biology (new articles) - пн, 2018-08-13 23:00

by Juliette Fedry, Jennifer Forcina, Pierre Legrand, Gérard Péhau-Arnaudet, Ahmed Haouz, Mark Johnson, Felix A. Rey, Thomas Krey

HAPLESS2 (HAP2) is a broadly conserved, gamete-expressed transmembrane protein that was shown recently to be structurally homologous to viral class II fusion proteins, which initiate fusion with host cells via insertion of fusion loops into the host membrane. However, the functional conformation of the HAP2 fusion loops has remained unknown, as the reported X-ray structure of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii HAP2 lacked this critical region. Here, we report a structure-guided alignment that reveals diversification of the proposed HAP2 fusion loops. Representative crystal structures show that in flowering plants, HAP2 has a single prominent fusion loop projecting an amphipathic helix at its apex, while in trypanosomes, three small nonpolar loops of HAP2 are poised to interact with the target membrane. A detailed structure-function analysis of the Arabidopsis HAP2 amphipathic fusion helix defines key residues that are essential for membrane insertion and for gamete fusion. Our study suggests that HAP2 may have evolved multiple modes of membrane insertion to accommodate the diversity of membrane environments it has encountered during eukaryotic evolution.
Категории: Biology, Journals

Provenance and risk in transfer of biological materials

PLOS Biology (new articles) - пн, 2018-08-13 23:00

by Jane Nielsen, Tania Bubela, Don R. C. Chalmers, Amber Johns, Linda Kahl, Joanne Kamens, Charles Lawson, John Liddicoat, Rebekah McWhirter, Ann Monotti, James Scheibner, Tess Whitton, Dianne Nicol

Whereas biological materials were once transferred freely, there has been a marked shift in the formalisation of exchanges involving these materials, primarily through the use of Material Transfer Agreements (MTAs). This paper considers how risk aversion dominates MTA negotiations and the impact it may have on scientific progress. Risk aversion is often based on unwarranted fears of incurring liability through the use of a material or loss of control or missing out on commercialisation opportunities. Evidence to date has suggested that complexity tends to permeate even straightforward transactions despite extensive efforts to implement simple, standard MTAs. We argue that in most cases, MTAs need do little more than establish provenance, and any attempt to extend MTAs beyond this simple function constitutes stifling behaviour. Drawing on available examples of favourable practice, we point to a number of strategies that may usefully be employed to reduce risk-averse tendencies, including the promotion of simplicity, education of those engaged in the MTA process, and achieving a cultural shift in the way in which technology transfer office (TTO) success is measured in institutions employing MTAs.
Категории: Biology, Journals

Ancient natural nuclear reactors show how to store radioactive waste

Genetics - пн, 2018-08-13 22:00
Billions of years ago, uranium in the Earth’s crust underwent nuclear reactions on its own, and the remnants demonstrate a way to keep nuclear waste under control
Категории: Biology

Ancient natural nuclear reactors show how to store radioactive waste

HIV and AIDS - пн, 2018-08-13 22:00
Billions of years ago, uranium in the Earth’s crust underwent nuclear reactions on its own, and the remnants demonstrate a way to keep nuclear waste under control
Категории: Healthcare, Science and society

Ancient natural nuclear reactors show how to store radioactive waste

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - пн, 2018-08-13 22:00
Billions of years ago, uranium in the Earth’s crust underwent nuclear reactions on its own, and the remnants demonstrate a way to keep nuclear waste under control
Категории: Science and society

We’ve identified the brain cells that let you control urination

Genetics - пн, 2018-08-13 18:00
We’ve all been there – desperately holding on for a toilet. Now the brain cells that help us do it have been identified, which may lead to new incontinence treatments
Категории: Biology