Results tagged “Genomics”

A new tool that simultaneously compares 1.4 million genetic sequences can classify how species are related to each other at far larger scales than previously possible. Described today in Nature Biotechnology by researchers from the Centre for Genomic Regulation in Barcelona, the technology can reconstruct how life has evolved over hundreds of millions of years and makes important inroads for the ambition to understand the code of life for every living species on Earth.

The opportunistic pathogens Burkholderia cepacia and Burkholderia contaminans, both genomovars of the Burkholderia cepacia complex (BCC), are frequently cultured from the potable water system (PWS) of the International Space Station (ISS).

The abiotic synthesis of ribonucleotides is thought to have been an essential step towards the emergence of the RNA world.

The Lost City hydrothermal field on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge supports dense microbial life on the lofty calcium carbonate chimney structures.

To study the swiftness of biology - the protein chemistry behind every life function - scientists need to see molecules changing and interacting in unimaginably rapid time increments - trillionths of a second or shorter.

Two pathways diverged in a chemical synthesis, and one molecule took them both. Chemists at the University of Tokyo have studied how molecular building blocks can either form a spherical cage or an ultrathin sheet that shows some of the basic properties of a "smart" material that can respond to its environment.

Biology encodes information in DNA and RNA, which are complex molecules finely tuned to their functions. But are they the only way to store hereditary molecular information?

Viruses are non-living creatures, consisting of genetic material encased in a protein coat. Once the virus infects a living organism, it can replicate itself and continue on.

Chloroplasts in photosynthetic eukaryotes originated from a cyanobacterial endosymbiosis far more than 1 billion years ago 1-3. Due to this ancientness, it remains unclear how this evolutionary process proceeded.

Caltech scientists have discovered a new species of worm thriving in the extreme environment of Mono Lake. This new species, temporarily dubbed Auanema sp., has three different sexes, can survive 500 times the lethal human dose of arsenic, and carries its young inside its body like a kangaroo.

The widespread presence of ribonucleic acid (RNA) catalysts and cofactors in Earth's biosphere today suggests that RNA was the first biopolymer to support Darwinian evolution.

Synthetic biologists seek to create new life with forms and functions not seen in nature.

A Prebiotic Route to DNA

DNA, the hereditary material, may have appeared on Earth earlier than has been assumed hitherto. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich chemists led by Oliver Trapp show that a simple reaction pathway could have given rise to DNA subunits on the early Earth.

Scientists in the University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Biochemistry are watching evolution happen in real time.

In a research breakthrough funded by NASA, scientists have synthesized a molecular system that, like DNA, can store and transmit information. This unprecedented feat suggests there could be an alternative to DNA-based life, as we know it on Earth -- a genetic system for life that may be possible on other worlds.

Bacteria have evolved all manner of adaptations to live in every habitat on Earth. But unlike plants and animals, which can be preserved as fossils, bacteria have left behind little physical evidence of their evolution, making it difficult for scientists to determine exactly when different groups of bacteria evolved.

Trying to explain how DNA and RNA evolved to form such neat spirals has been a notorious enigma in science. But a new study suggests the rotation may have occurred with ease billions of years ago when RNA's chemical ancestors casually spun into spiraled strands.

Life Has A New Ingredient

Our prehistoric Earth, bombarded with asteroids and lightening, rife with bubbling geothermal pools, may not seem hospitable today. But somewhere in the chemical chaos of our early planet, life did form.

In recent years, scientists have engineered bacteria with expanded genetic codes that produce proteins made from a wider range of molecular building blocks, opening up a promising front in protein engineering.

Strains of the bacterium Enterobacter, similar to newly found opportunistic infectious organisms seen in a few hospital settings, have been identified on the International Space Station (ISS).

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