This week, the Pacific Biosciences SMRT Grant announced the lucky winner of the World’s Most Interesting Genome competition. The contest was voted on by the public and a dingo named Sandy won the day. But was that the right decision? No, Sandy is kind of like a doggo and it’s clear that voters let her cuteness win out…
Remember those slightly horrifying sites that mash up two faces to tell you what your hypothetical babies might look like? With genome sequencing and "virtual embryos," we might actually be able to do that—using science.
Scientists have finished unraveling the largest genome ever sequenced. The genome of the loblolly pine encompasses just under 23 billion base pairs — seven times more than the human genome.
Somewhere 11,000 years ago, something weird happened to a dog. It got cancer—and the really damn freaky part is that the cancer could survive even outside of its canine host. That unknown dog is long dead now, but its tumor cells have improbably lived on, continuing to sprout on the genitalia of dogs all over the…
If—like most of us—your entire understanding of DNA and genetics can be traced back to CSI reruns, you’re probably under the impression that your genome is unique; that it defines you completely. But scientists increasingly believe that’s not that case. In fact, we need to start thinking about our genomes differently.
At some point, you probably learned about the idea of dominant and recessive genetic characteristics. A common example is tongue-rolling — those who can do it are said to have a dominant genetic trait. Except that's all wrong. And so are a lot of other things your teacher called dominant traits, too.
Scientists have managed to sequence the genome of a 700,000-year-old horse—in the process generating the oldest complete DNA sequence yet.
In the human genome, only about 2% of our DNA are genes involved in coding the proteins essential to our existence. The other 98% is noncoding DNA, often called junk DNA because there's no clear purpose for it. That name might seem a bit pejorative, but a new study of the bladderwort genome suggests it's oddly…
Everyone knows that a drop of blood or strand of hair is all the police need to identify suspect's DNA. But now scientists from Harvard have gone a step further: they can sequence an entire genome from a single cell.
Mapping out your genome is the 21st Century equivalent of staring deep inside your soul; it's tempting to look, but terrifying what you might find. The DNA divers at 23andMe are hoping that slashing the price of their home-testing service—from $300 down to $100—will be enough to tilt the scales towards discovery. Are…
For the past decade, scientists have been working on the assumption that 20,000 genes, less than 2 percent of the total genome, underpin human biology. But a massive international project called ENCODE has just revealed that plenty of the remaining 98 percent, once tossed aside as "junk DNA", is in fact incredibly…
Nature or nurture? It's an age-old debate that sees conversations go round in circles and actually, if truth be told, for most human characteristics its often a combination of the two. A new study, however, suggests that where you live has a massive impact on which effect is most influential.
Our closest evolutionary relatives are chimpanzees, and both of our species are much more related to each other than to gorillas, the next closest relative. But a new genome analysis reveals we share some unexpected traits with our massive gorilla cousins.
The human genome carries an average of 1% to 4% Neanderthal DNA, which means our ancient human ancestors must have interbred with our extinct evolutionary cousins. That raises an obvious next question: why did humans have sex with Neanderthals?
This month marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of the discovery of Mitochondrial Eve, the common ancestor of every human alive today. Here's everything you need to know about why the mother of humanity is so important.
Don Wright was diagnosed with myeloma—cancer in his blood cells and bone marrow—two weeks after running his first marathon. His doctor gave him a five-year survival estimate. Eight years later he has run 60 26.2-mile races in 41 states and takes just one pill per day to keep his cancer at bay.
Despite representing different stages of human evolution, it looks like European Homo Sapiens might have had a penchant for a little Neanderthal booty. Or vice versa.
Humans and chimpanzees share up to 99% of the same DNA, which is particularly remarkable considering we don't look anything like each other. The reason behind our vast difference in appearance is all thanks to our seemingly useless so-called "junk" DNA.
Reproductive arrangements don't get much stranger than those of the Batura toad of Pakistan. The entire species is the result of two unknown species interbreeding, and each toad carries three sets of genes...which makes passing on its genome extremely tricky.
The plague that wiped out over a third of Europe's population in the 14th century came from a bacteria known as Yersinia pestis. Now we've sequenced its genome...and it's weirdly, almost worryingly identical to its modern descendants.