A Hawaiian bobtail squid (Euprymna scolopes) rests on a reflective surface
Reshuffled Genomes May Explain Cephalopods’ Smarts
In two related studies, researchers describe huge chromosomal rearrangements and about 500 novel gene clusters in the octopus, squid, and cuttlefish genomes, which they say could help explain how they evolved their extraordinary brains.
ABOVE: TOM KLEINDINST
Reshuffled Genomes May Explain Cephalopods’ Smarts
Reshuffled Genomes May Explain Cephalopods’ Smarts

In two related studies, researchers describe huge chromosomal rearrangements and about 500 novel gene clusters in the octopus, squid, and cuttlefish genomes, which they say could help explain how they evolved their extraordinary brains.

In two related studies, researchers describe huge chromosomal rearrangements and about 500 novel gene clusters in the octopus, squid, and cuttlefish genomes, which they say could help explain how they evolved their extraordinary brains.

ABOVE: TOM KLEINDINST

genome

A tubifer cardinalfish
Genome Spotlight: Tubifer cardinalfish (Siphamia tubifer)
Christie Wilcox | Apr 28, 2022
These tiny reef fish harbor luminous bacteria, and the chromosome-level assembly of the species’ genome may facilitate the duo’s use as a vertebrate model for symbiosis.
a microscope image of a rotifer
Bacterial Enzyme Keeps Rotifers’ Transposable Elements in Check
Christie Wilcox | Mar 3, 2022
Jumping genes in bdelloid rotifers are tamped down by DNA methylation performed by an enzyme pilfered from bacteria roughly 60 million years ago, a study finds.
John Glass describes why researchers constructed a synthetic unicellular organism and how it unravels the secrets of evolution.
The Scientist Speaks - DIY Cells: Understanding Life with a Synthetic Minimal Cell
Sejal Davla, PhD | Feb 25, 2022
John Glass describes why researchers constructed a synthetic unicellular organism and how it unravels the secrets of evolution.
A Pacific beetle-mimic cockroach on a leaf
Genome Spotlight: Pacific Beetle-Mimic Cockroach (Diploptera punctata)
Christie Wilcox | Feb 24, 2022
The genome of the world’s only live-bearing cockroach may shed light on how viviparity evolves in insects.
illustration of a mitochondrian inside a cell
Could Dad’s Mitochondrial DNA Benefit Hybrids?
Alejandra Manjarrez | Jan 20, 2022
Studies have found that organisms can inherit mitochondria from male parents in rare instances, and both theoretical and experimental work hint that this biparental inheritance is more than just a fluke.
Targeted DNA Sequencing: Probing for Answers
The Scientist Creative Services Team, Roche | Jul 8, 2021
A focused investigation for more in-depth answers.
Invasive <em>Phragmites australis</em> in North Carolina's Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge
Genome Spotlight: Common Reed (Phragmites australis)
Christie Wilcox | Dec 23, 2021
The first reference-quality genome for this grass species could aid managers in understanding and eradicating this highly invasive plant.
two quails
Chromosomal Rearrangement Linked to Less Mobile Quail
Chloe Tenn | Dec 7, 2021
The Scientist interviews evolutionary biologist Carles Vilà about how a large genomic inversion detected in common quail affects the birds’ physical characteristics and migratory behaviors.
The Epigenetic Origins of Allergy and Asthma
The Scientist Speaks Ep. 15 - The Epigenetic Origins of Allergy and Asthma
The Scientist Creative Services Team | Feb 26, 2021
Epigenetic marks acquired from environmental exposures throughout life influence human health and may even transcend generations.
Deer at grass field with autumn trees at the background stock photo
Researchers Detect Coronavirus in Iowa Deer
Chloe Tenn | Nov 3, 2021
Multiple white tailed deer tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 likely transmitted from humans, a study finds, indicating the species could act as a reservoir for the virus.
Conceptual image of gene expression in DNA
Enhancers: Conserved in Activity, Not in Sequence
Jack J. Lee | Nov 1, 2021
Certain stretches of DNA that regulate gene expression have evolved differently from protein-coding genes.
Common vampire bats on a black background
The Genes Vampires Lost
Alejandra Manjarrez | Oct 28, 2021
According to a preprint, the common vampire bat lacks 13 genes present in other bat species, which may help explain their blood-only diet and other curious aspects of their lifestyle.
Colored Genetic Code DNA Molecule Structure stock photo
Genetic Risks for Depression Differ Between Ancestral Groups
Chloe Tenn | Oct 19, 2021
A large genome-wide association study in East Asians uncovers novel genetic links to depression, calling attention to the consequences of underrepresentation of non-European groups in genetic research data.
a smiling woman standing between a much taller man and woman
Protein Size Matters
David Adam | Sep 23, 2021
A study probes how genetic duplications that can swell protein length influence human traits such as height and kidney function.
the molecular structure of interferon-alpha
Lots of Rapid Evolution in Interferon-Stimulated Genes: Study
Christie Wilcox | Jul 1, 2021
A comparison of interferon-related genes across 20 primate genomes reveals differences in the speed at which they evolve and new targets for antiviral discovery efforts.
giraffe, genetics & genomics, CRISPR, gene editing, genome, physiology, hypertension, bone growth, techniques, mouse model
Genome Reveals Clues to Giraffes’ “Blatantly Strange” Body Shape
Amanda Heidt | Mar 19, 2021
The physiological demands of that long neck get support from a gene involved in strengthening bones and blood vessels, researchers find after inserting the sequence in mice.
Skin Sheltered from Sunlight Still Gathers UV-Linked Mutations
Abby Olena | Jan 14, 2021
Whole-genome sequencing reveals a wide range of UV-induced DNA changes in human skin cells, and lighter skin collects more mutations, sometimes to “sky high” levels.
Plant Cells Swap Organelles
Abby Olena | Jan 7, 2021
Their relocation explains horizontal genome transfer first described more than a decade ago.
Native Americans Crossed the Pacific Long Before Europeans
Abby Olena | Jul 8, 2020
Genetic evidence points to individuals from South America having possibly floated on a raft to Polynesian islands about 500 years before Europeans navigated there.