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The Nutshell

» cell & molecular biology and evolution

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image: Fraction of SNPs Can Affect Fitness

Fraction of SNPs Can Affect Fitness

By | January 21, 2015

A point mutation analysis of the entire human genome finds that alterations to as many as 7.5 percent of nucleotides may have contributed to humans’ evolutionary split from chimpanzees.

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image: Reassessing One Really Old Fish

Reassessing One Really Old Fish

By | January 13, 2015

New analysis of an ancient specimen prompts a rethink of fish forebears.

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image: Mitochondrial Enzyme Detailed

Mitochondrial Enzyme Detailed

By | January 9, 2015

Researchers reveal clues regarding how an ancient mitochondrial enzyme helps maintain healthy cells across the tree of life.

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image: The Benefits of Being a “Bearded Lady”

The Benefits of Being a “Bearded Lady”

By | January 8, 2015

A study of female eastern fence lizards that bear a distinctly male trait yields tantalizing clues about the tradeoffs involved in blurring the lines of sexual dimorphism.

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image: Iron-Ferrying Protein Impedes Pathogens

Iron-Ferrying Protein Impedes Pathogens

By | December 15, 2014

Meningitis-causing bacteria exerted strong evolutionary pressure on an iron-binding protein in primates, a study shows.

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image: Honeybee Compound for Hair Loss?

Honeybee Compound for Hair Loss?

By | December 11, 2014

Propolis, a natural product used by honeybees to repair their hives, stimulates hair growth in shaved mice.

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image: Evolution in Oil Droplets

Evolution in Oil Droplets

By | December 9, 2014

For the first time, researchers have mimicked biological evolution using chemicals instead of living organisms.

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image: Enzyme Design

Enzyme Design

By | December 3, 2014

Researchers create synthetic enzymes in the lab, encoded by artificial genetic material.

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image: Gene Jumped to All Three Domains of Life

Gene Jumped to All Three Domains of Life

By | December 1, 2014

By horizontal gene transfer, an antibacterial gene family has dispersed to a plant, an insect, several fungi, and an archaeon.

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image: Barley Key to Mankind’s Alpine Incursion

Barley Key to Mankind’s Alpine Incursion

By | November 24, 2014

The cold-tolerant cereal crop allowed humans to live and farm higher than ever starting more than 3,000 years ago.

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