Illustration of blue shiny mitochondria
Worms Live Longer with Mitochondria Powered by Light: Preprint
Increasing mitochondrial activity in worms by engineering a light-activated proton pump into the organelle’s membrane extends the animals’ lifespan without evidence of health decline, according to a preprint.
Worms Live Longer with Mitochondria Powered by Light: Preprint
Worms Live Longer with Mitochondria Powered by Light: Preprint

Increasing mitochondrial activity in worms by engineering a light-activated proton pump into the organelle’s membrane extends the animals’ lifespan without evidence of health decline, according to a preprint.

Increasing mitochondrial activity in worms by engineering a light-activated proton pump into the organelle’s membrane extends the animals’ lifespan without evidence of health decline, according to a preprint.

model organisms
Pink rat pups piled on top of each other.
Rat Sperm Generated from Stem Cells
Alejandra Manjarrez | Apr 7, 2022
Researchers report they were able to make functional sperm in a dish, a feat previously only possible for mice.
a purple betta with white fins in a tank
My Daughter’s First Pet—the Next Big Model Organism?
Christie Wilcox | Jul 15, 2021
Bettas were likely the first fish welcomed into human homes. Now, scientists are welcoming them into the lab to learn how genes dictate their appearance and behavior.
a leopard gecko with an unusually yellow body
“Lemon Frost” Leopard Geckos’ Cancers Similar to Human Melanomas
Christie Wilcox | Jun 24, 2021
The color morph’s bright yellow hue and its propensity for skin tumors both likely stem from a gene implicated in a dangerous form of human skin cancer, suggesting the animals could make an ideal model for studying the disease.
An underwater photo of the solitary tunicate Polycarpa mytiligera growing on a coral in the Red Sea
When Severed, This Solitary Tunicate Regrows as Three New Animals
Amanda Heidt | May 13, 2021
While regeneration has long been the domain of colonial tunicates, a solitary species of sea squirt was able to regenerate into multiple, fully functional individuals within a month of being cut up.
neuroscience, mice, fear, pain, empathy, social transmission, emotion contagion, optogenetics, analgesia, Stanford University
Mice Share Each Other’s Pain and Fear
Amanda Heidt | Jan 14, 2021
The animals adopt the emotional state of their cagemates, and the parts of the brain engaged during the process are different for pain and fear, according to a new study.
Kathryn Anderson, forward genetics, genetics & genomics, model organisms, Toll, hedgehog, embryogenesis, developmental biology, cell differentiation, cilia,
Developmental Biologist Kathryn Anderson Dies at 68
Amanda Heidt | Jan 6, 2021
The Sloan Kettering researcher used mutagenic screening to probe genes and molecular pathways, including Toll and Hedgehog, essential to development in fruit flies and mice.
animal learning, zebra finch, model organism, communication, fast mapping, individual recognition, cognition, evolution
Zebra Finches Recognize the Calls of Over 40 Fellow Finches
Amanda Heidt | Nov 13, 2020
Their ability to distinguish between individuals is strong evidence for fast mapping, a learning tool generally thought to belong only to humans.
model organism, zebrafish, sponge, cell &molecular biology, genetics & genomics, enhancer, transcription, non-coding DNA, gene regulation, evolution
Regulators of Gene Activity in Animals Are Deeply Conserved
Amanda Heidt | Nov 6, 2020
Enhancers, short regions of DNA that direct gene expression, of species separated by 700 million years of evolution worked interchangeably, according to a new study.
The Many Model Systems of COVID-19
Abby Olena | Nov 4, 2020
Researchers turn to familiar model animals, along with some fresh strategies, to develop countermeasures against SARS-CoV-2 and investigate the biology of infection.
Those We Lost in 2019
Ashley Yeager | Dec 30, 2019
The scientific community said goodbye to Sydney Brenner, Paul Greengard, Patricia Bath, and a number of other leading researchers this year.
Genetics Models Move Beyond Drosophila and the Humble Lab Mouse
Amber Dance | Sep 1, 2019
Organisms with unusual genomes are helping scientists investigate gene regulation, evolution, and development.
Genetically Personalized Fruit Flies Screen for Cancer Drugs
Ruth Williams | May 22, 2019
Fly avatars bearing multiple genetic changes akin to those of a cancer patient lead to a tailor-made treatment that has shrunk the patient’s tumors.
immune cells in zebrafish gut
Image of the Day: Gut Feeling
Shawna Williams | Nov 28, 2018
An unusual population of immune cells appears to exist in zebrafish as well as mammals.
Of Mice and Metastasis
Amanda B. Keener | Apr 1, 2018
Tools for studying how cancer spreads
Opinion: Address Taxonomic Skew
Malcolm F. Rosenthal and Maydianne C.B. Andrade | May 30, 2017
The domination of model organisms and charismatic megafauna in the literature is a disservice to the life sciences.
Enzyme Required for Mitochondrial Genome Destruction
Abby Olena | Mar 22, 2017
Mitochondrial DNA polymerase is necessary for the destruction of paternal mtDNA in fruit fly sperm, scientists show.
Dethroning E. coli?
Alison F. Takemura | Jun 23, 2016
Some scientists hope to replace microbiology’s workhorse bacterium with fast-growing Vibrio natriegens.
What Lies Sleeping
Philippe Mourrain | Mar 1, 2016
Why can science still not define this most basic biological process?
Human Genes Can Save Yeast
Ruth Williams | May 21, 2015
Replacing yeast genes with their human equivalents reveals functional conservation despite a billion years of divergent evolution.