We know that we don’t “use” a lot of the genes inside our cells, but our DNA is strung with relics. But what are those relics, and what if they come back to haunt us? Here’s what you’re carrying around, and why it’s not as irrevocably part of the past as you think it is.
While DNA is the building block of life, its cousin RNA keeps the show running smoothly, as it carries the information from DNA that allow genes to be expressed. RNA's ability to increase or decrease the expression of genes means it has huge potential to treat diseases at the genetic level, including tumors and…
While traditional vaccines can offer annual protection from the latest flu strains, the viruses mutate and evolve so fast that we're right back where we started the following year. That's where a revolutionary new vaccine could change everything.
Knot theory hasn't been the only unexpected math to pop up during DNA research. Scientists have used Venn diagrams to study DNA, and the Heisenberg uncertainty principle. The architecture of DNA shows traces of the "golden ratio" of length to width found in classical edifices like the Parthenon. Geometry enthusiasts…
Sunburn is painful, dangerous and embarrassing. But despite knowing it's the body's protective immune response to high levels of ultraviolet radiation, scientists weren't exactly sure what the biological process behind it was. Turns out that it's your RNA screaming out in pain—a finding which could help sunburn and…
Stiff muscles definitely benefit from a rub down, but scientists have never quite known why. Now, a team of researchers has shown that it works by changing your gene expression — quite literally, your body is hard-coded to release pain-easing chemicals when you're massaged.
All living organisms use DNA as the carrier of genetic material and RNA as the messenger molecule directing the expression of genes and creation of proteins. This arrangement has lasted 3.5 billion years. But what came before these life-giving molecules?
Before Charles Darwin, the leading evolutionary theorist was Jean-Baptise Lamarck, who believed organisms acquired traits over their lifetimes that they then passed onto their children. This theory has been roundly disproved...but in the case of roundworms, Lamarck was actually right.
All life on Earth is related, which means we all must share a single common evolutionary ancestor. And now it appears that this ancestor might have been a single, planet-spanning organism that lived in a time that predates the development of survival of the fittest.
There's a longstanding belief that, on average, women are healthier than men, and with good reason. Women live longer, and studies reveal women fight off disease better than their male counterparts. But where does this advantage come from? Turns out it's all thanks to some microRNA on the X-chromosome.
Scientists at Nanjing University made a startling discovery about the food we eat. Not only do we ingest the nutrients from our food, we incorporate some of the genetic material as well.
We've suspected it for awhile now, and now it's confirmed that the bacterium Yersinia pestis was responsible for the devastating plague that wiped out a third of Europe 650 years ago. But this ultimate killer started as something far different.
Want to help advance the world of science? Don't have an advanced degree or any formal training? Hated Organic Chemistry? That's ok – you can be a Citizen Scientist!
The Belly Button Biodiversity project recently began taking DNA samples from people's navels to find out what bacteria is living within. Of the roughly 1,400 bacterial strains discovered thus far, at least 662 of them are completely unknown.
Biology faces a basic paradox - life requires DNA to function, yet DNA evolved after life emerged. Now a study of modern bacteria has revealed what DNA's progenitor might be.
A team of scientists from around the world have recreated mammoth hemoglobin. The discovery reveals more about the beast than fossil records ever could; it's as though we've traveled 40,000 years into the past and taken a blood sample.