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Roving sharks

By | July 16, 2001

In a Brief Communication in the July 12 Nature, Pardini et al. report the use of genetic analysis to track the movements of great white sharks, Carcharodon carcharias (Nature 2001, 412:139-140). Analysis of DNA sequences from the maternally inherited mitochondrial genome provided evidence for long-term isolation of female sharks in three distinct populations (off the coasts of South Africa, Australia and New Zealand). In contrast, they found no sequence differentiation for microsatellite loci in

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US debates care standards for small laboratory animals

By | July 16, 2001

The US Animal Welfare Act for humane care of research animals excludes rats, mice and birds. Efforts to remedy this are in progress.

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APOE E4 increases risk of heart disease in smokers

By | July 13, 2001

Apolipoprotein E (apoE) isoforms E2, E3, and E4, are important determinants of plasma lipid concentrations, with the ε4 allele particularly associated with heightened risk of coronary heart disease (CHD). However the inherited apoE genotype interactions with environmental risk factors such as smoking are not known. In 14 July Lancet, Steve Humphries and colleagues from University College London Medical School show that the E4 isoform of apoE is associated with a significantly increased risk

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Cape flora

By | July 13, 2001

The Cape province of South Africa is considered a continental ' hotspot' with a rich diversity of species of flora. In the July 12 Nature, Richardson et al., from the Royal Botanic Gardens in Richmond, UK, report the results of a molecular phylogenetic analysis that dates the era of speciation to about 7-8 million years ago (Nature 2001, 412:181-182). They sequenced nuclear ribosomal and plastid DNA from island species of the buckthorn Phylica, as well as continental species from the Cape, and

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Could the Black Death protect against HIV?

By | July 13, 2001

People who survived the Black Death could have passed on a mutation that prevents the human immunodeficiency virus entering cells.

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The molecular basis of allergenicity

By | July 13, 2001

Comparative analysis of the three dimensional structures of diverse allergens reveals a common structural motif that could potentially serve as a ligand binding site.

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Adhesins are vital for extrapulmonary dissemination of tuberculosis

By | July 12, 2001

Mycobacterium tuberculosis is the causative agent of tuberculosis, a disease which is the world's leading cause of death due to a single infectious agent, and which is responsible for upto 3 million deaths annually. Despite the availability of the entire M. tuberculosis genome, virulence factors involved in the extrapulmonary dissemination of the disease have remained elusive.In 12 July Nature Kevin Pethe and colleagues at the Institute Pastuer de Lille, France and the Laboratory of Mycobacteria

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mutation

By | July 12, 2001

gene causes susceptibility to mycobacteria without affecting viral immunity.

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Mammalian development seems to relatively tolerant to epigenetic aberrations of the genome, suggesting that cloning could result in viable offspring, despite widespread gene dysregulation.

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Circulating DNA fragments involved in vasculitis

By | July 11, 2001

DNA fragments containing the CpG motif in the sera of patients with systemic lupus erythematosus may be implicated in vasculitis.

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