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She Tracks the DNA of Elusive Species That Hide in Harsh Places
On Mount Everest and in the Peruvian Andes, Tracie Seimon uses DNA to study how species and ecosystems respond to climate change, pathogens and other influences.
Animal Mutation Rates Reveal Traits That Speed Evolution
The first large-scale comparison of mutation rates gives insights into how quickly species can evolve.
Gene Expression in Neurons Solves a Brain Evolution Puzzle
The neocortex of our brain is the seat of our intellect. New data suggests that mammals created it with new types of cells that they developed only after their evolutionary split from reptiles.
The Cause of Depression Is Probably Not What You Think
Depression has often been blamed on low levels of serotonin in the brain. That answer is insufficient, but alternatives are coming into view and changing our understanding of the disease.
How Genes Can Leap From Snakes to Frogs in Madagascar
The discovery of a hot spot for horizontal gene transfer draws attention to the possible roles of parasites and ecology in such changes.
Geneticist Awarded Nobel Prize for Studies of Extinct Human Ancestors
Svante Pääbo has been awarded the 2022 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for studying our extinct ancestors’ DNA.
Why ‘De-Extinction’ Is Impossible (But Could Work Anyway)
Several projects are aiming to bring back mammoths and other species that have vanished from the planet. Whether that’s technically possible is beside the point.
Secrets of Early Animal Evolution Revealed by Chromosome ‘Tectonics’
Large blocks of genes conserved through hundreds of millions of years of evolution hint at how the first animal chromosomes came to be.
The Year in Biology
The detailed understanding of brains and multicellular bodies reached new heights this year, while the genomes of the COVID-19 virus and various organisms yielded more surprises.