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Rather than getting a gene for its original function, a horizontal gene transfer provides the raw material for evolutionary innovation.

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Authors of a new study suggest that 520-million-year-old structures, previously identified as the brains of ancient arthropods, are instead preserved microbial biofilms.

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image: Frogs Fight Back From Fungal Attack

Frogs Fight Back From Fungal Attack

By Ruth Williams | March 29, 2018

A decade after chytridiomycosis killed scores of amphibians in Panama, some species are recovering. New research indicates why.  

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image: Monitoring Mutations with Microfluidics

Monitoring Mutations with Microfluidics

By Ruth Williams | March 15, 2018

A device dubbed the “mother machine” enables real-time observation of mutagenesis in single bacterial cells.  

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Thousands of axons grew from the transplants and connected to damaged primate tissue, the first such demonstration in primates.

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image: Stem Cell Vaccine Protects Mice From Cancer

Stem Cell Vaccine Protects Mice From Cancer

By Ruth Williams | February 15, 2018

Stem cells and cancer cells have enough molecular similarities that the former can be used to trigger immunity against the latter.

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image: Hibernating Rodents Feel Less Cold

Hibernating Rodents Feel Less Cold

By Abby Olena | December 19, 2017

Syrian hamsters and thirteen-lined ground squirrels are tolerant of chilly temperatures, thanks to amino acid changes in a cold-responsive ion channel. 

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Upping a gene’s expression in rat brains made them better learners and normalized the activity of hundreds of other genes to resemble the brains of younger animals.

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image: Can Young Stem Cells Make Older People Stronger?

Can Young Stem Cells Make Older People Stronger?

By Shawna Williams | December 11, 2017

Small trials using younger donors and elderly recipients hint that mesenchymal stem cell transfers might reduce frailty. 

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Activating genes for reprogramming factors for a short time transforms large numbers of differentiated cells into multipotent forms that could be useful for cell-based therapies.

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