It’s well established that older men are more likely to pass on a genetic disorder to their offspring, but we’re learning more about why this happens: As men age, their sperm mutates more frequently. This is bad news for men who want to have children later in life.
Since 1954, Kyoto University has been managing a population of fruit flies, living in total darkness. Now, after interbreeding some of these “dark flies” with regular flies, the researchers are learning more about the genetic adaptations taking place when fruit flies are kept entirely in the dark.
Ticks—those unbreakable, blood-lusting arthropods that haunt your summer camp memories—have some fascinating genetic secrets. The tick genome tells a tale of weaponized spit, expandable armor, and how to drink 100 times one’s body weight in blood. Strangest of all, it’s utterly enormous.
A small segment of the population is literally allergic to vibrations, an annoying condition that gives rise to hives and other symptoms. Researchers at the NIH have now isolated the genetic mutation responsible for the disorder, and it’s offering new insight into related conditions.
A DNA analysis of nearly 90,000 23andme customers suggests our preference for early mornings may be rooted in our genes. The study also suggests that night owls are at greater risk of depression and other health issues. But those findings come with a couple of caveats.
Zika is now a global emergency, and the latest in a long string of mosquito-borne viruses to afflict humanity. Mosquitoes truly suck, and the time has come to do something about them. Here’s how science will help—and why a war on mosquitoes doesn’t mean we have to wipe them off the face of the planet.
Schizophrenia is a complex disease with elusive origins, but the mystery became much clearer today, when a landmark new study based on genetic analysis of nearly 65,000 individuals pinpointed a specific gene and biological process behind it.
For the first time ever, scientists have used the CRISPR gene-editing tool to successfully treat a genetic muscle disorder in a living adult mammal. It’s a promising medical breakthrough that could soon lead to human therapies.
The most prominent sperm bank in the UK is under investigation after turning away donors with dyslexia and other questionable characteristics. This raises an important question: Should sperm banks be in the business of making “better” babies?
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has given the thumbs up to a genetically modified chicken that produces a drug in its eggs. It’s the latest addition to a growing area in medicine known as “farmaceuticals.”
As we consider the ethics of human gene editing, we need to understand what can and can’t be meaningfully edited.
It sounds like the plot of a Hollywood science-fiction movie. An alien species is dying. Their only hope is for a brood of artificially fertilised eggs created from the preserved DNA of some of the last survivors to be brought back to life in a future world where (hopefully) conditions are better suited to them.
We typically think of evolution as a progression from simplicity to complexity. But one organism seems to have thrown the rulebook out the window: a microbial animal that offers a striking example of evolution run “backwards.”
The birds you see above are all ruffs (Philomachus pugnax): wading birds that summer in marshes through Northern Europe and Asia. All three are wearing different forms of breeding plumage. And all of them are male.
Puberty has a clear physiological signpost in girls: sooner or later, they have their first period. That’s been a critical part of identifying genes that influence when puberty starts in girls, but it wasn’t clear whether those genes also affected boys the same way.
Some people cheat on their partners. Others wouldn’t dream of it–the risk is too huge. A new video from ASAP Science lays out how genetic differences in the neurotransmitters that promote risk-taking and social bonding might influence people’s willingness to stray.
The Bread Lab at Washington State University is a collaboration between plant geneticists and master bakers. The goal? To breed new varieties of wheat that can turn out superior breads and beers while still growing well in the cool and wet Northwest climate.
A one-year-old girl diagnosed with incurable aggressive leukemia is now in remission after receiving “designer cells” from a donor. The therapy made use of a powerful new gene-editing technique that could eventually be used to treat an array of hereditary diseases.
Genetic testing company 23andMe is back in the business of direct-to-consumer health testing kits, after a two-year semi-hiatus (in the U.S., at least) from offering health risk assessments at the behest of the Food and Drug Administration. That makes 23andMe the first such company to win FDA approval for taking its…
It sounds like a bizarre video game mashup, but farmers have reported “zombie” plants since the early 1600s: plants that took on a sickly yellow look and grew strange leaf-like structures or bushy growths instead of flowering and reproducing.