Evidence for non-DNA-based inheritance has been found in a particularly unstable plant gene, researchers suggest in
"We can imagine two parallel pathways, one of DNA-based inheritance, and in the background you have this other which might be RNA—or an odd form of DNA-based inheritance we don't understand," Pruitt told
Pruitt's team was investigating HOTHEAD, a gene responsible for wax cuticle production that, when mutated, causes organ fusion. Previous research has shown unusual point mutation instability in the gene in Arabidopsis, which results in a high frequency of wildtype plants from mutant parents.
In the latest study, Pruitt's team used polymerase chain reaction...