Genomes debunk the idea of blonde, Nordic Vikings

Researchers sequenced the genome of 442 Viking Age bone fragments from all over Europe. The Vikings may not have been quite as Nordic as we thought.

Mathias Traczyk-Copenhagen • futurity
Sept. 17, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: history genomes europe featured science-and-technology society-and-culture vikings

Odd immune system lets anglerfishes fuse males to females

Among deep-sea anglerfishes, tiny males permanently attack to relatively gigantic females. New understanding of this process could benefit human health.

U. Washington • futurity
Aug. 3, 2020 ~8 min

Tags: reproduction fish genomes science-and-technology health-and-medicine sexes immune-systems

Genomes reveal the source of bat ‘superpowers’

The genomes of six living bat species reveals the source of some of their superpowers, including echolocation, flight, and imperviousness to certain deadly viruses.

Gregory Filiano-Stony Brook • futurity
July 29, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: evolution genes genomes bats science-and-technology

Team pinpoints the origin story of SARS-CoV-2

A reconstruction of the evolutionary origins of SARS-COV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, shows its lineage could hold other nasty viruses.

Sara LaJeunesse-Penn State • futurity
July 28, 2020 ~7 min

Tags: evolution covid-19 genomes viruses bats featured health-and-medicine pandemics

Smallpox is so much older than we thought, Vikings had it

"We have found the oldest evidence of smallpox. Moreover, it seems to have been surprisingly common as early as in the Viking Age."

Cecilie Krabbe-Copenhagen • futurity
July 27, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: history genomes viruses featured society-and-culture health-and-medicine smallpox vikings

Genes clarify the colors on these little hybrid birds

New research clarifies the throat and belly colors of hybrid warblers. It's plumage that ornithologists have puzzled over for a long time.

Gail McCormick-Penn State • futurity
July 15, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: birds genes genomes colors science-and-technology earth-and-environment

Viral ‘family tree’ reveals COVID-19 spread in Denmark

A new "coronavirus family tree" has given researchers a better look at how COVID-19 came into Denmark and how it spread domestically.

Michael Skov Jensen-Copenhagen • futurity
June 30, 2020 ~5 min

Tags: covid-19 genomes viruses social-lives health-and-medicine

Gardenias show how plants became great chemists

Sequencing the gardenia genome shows how plants evolved to re-use tricks from their genetic toolbox to create new chemicals.

Charlotte Hsu-Buffalo • futurity
June 25, 2020 ~9 min

Tags: dna evolution plants genomes science-and-technology flowers

Model warns of genetic modification gone awry in trees

A new model could help prevent unintended consequences when researchers use genetic modification on trees for things like biofuel.

Matt Shipman-NC State • futurity
April 12, 2020 ~5 min

Tags: trees genomes genetic-engineering wood science-and-technology

Genes link ‘Green Revolution’ to rice gone feral

Weedy rice is the result with cultivars of the crop go rogue. New research traces their origins to the "Green Revolution."

Talia Ogliore-WUSTL • futurity
March 27, 2020 ~4 min

Tags: agriculture genomes rice science-and-technology

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