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Transposons: A History of Their Discovery and Their Viral Connections

As science has continued its investigation into the inner workings of biology and biological systems on the molecular level, we have managed to unearth more and more complexity in the relationships within not only our own body, but in the world around us. Every organism has a symbiotic and antagonistic relationship with its surroundings, with […]

Medicago italica root nodules 2

Phylogenetics Shows Nitrogen-Fixing Plant Symbiosis Was Lost Repeatedly

Nitrogen fixation is a crucial part of plant growth and agriculture. Because the element nitrogen is a critical ingredient for proper development of plants, they need a steady supply of it in order to grow healthy and have a high yield of offspring seeds. For most plants, this is done by relying on nitrogen already […]

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The Sweet Potato Migrated To Polynesia Before Early Human Arrival

Defining the history of early mankind has long been a desire for archaeologists and others who study ancient artifacts of civilization. How we spread over time and to where and how our cultures interacted with each other proves a source of fascination and knowledge on when we developed technologies and especially agricultural techniques. The trip […]

Corn earworm

New Hybrid Swarm Combines Deadly Agricultural Pests Into Mega-Pests

Protecting farmers and their agricultural output around the world is a daunting task. Each region has its own trials and tribulations related to their temperature, rainfall, soil consistency, and of course, their pathogens. An unfortunate side effect of the otherwise hugely beneficial impact of international trade is that the pathogens faced in one corner of […]

A thaliana seedlings (cropped)

Manipulating The Plant-Bacteria Microbiome To Optimize Growth

When dealing with plants in a lab, in a garden, or in an agricultural field, we often forget that there was originally a whole biome that those plants were involved in in the wild. We often try to simulate those conditions to the best of our capabilities, but there is still so much knowledge we […]

Stem rust close up

A Decades Old Once Thought Eradicated Scourge Returns To Europe

As we have seen so often in recent years when it comes to human pathogens, eradicating a disease from a major population, country, or continent does not mean those results will be permanent forever. Any sort of laxity in preventative treatment and strict efforts against global spread can result in the re-emergence of a deadly […]

Closer Look (6145095297)

Deadly Fungus Threatens Worldwide Snake Populations

Humans are not the only group of organisms we as a species have to be concerned about. In addition to the impact our direct actions have on the environment around us, there is also the natural interplay between pathogens and wild species that may be exacerbated by the global nature of human travel. That is […]

Spiral timetree

Evolutionary History of Sugar Gene May Impact Xenotransplantation

Evolutionary history can often provide profound insights into genetic switchups in our past that may continue to hold a significant impact on our lives today. Thus, breaking down the genomes of our shared ancestors with other species and points of divergence is a primary area of research in biology. The Sialic Sugar Family The disparities […]

Mimulus guttatus.Phrymaceae

New Flower Developed With Evolutionary Autopolyploidy In Past 200 Years

The study of evolutionary history and how species have developed into the modern forms we know them for today has always been a continuing and ongoing process. As new knowledge on ancient and extinct species is unearthed and matched to their evolved living descendants, we are then able to further fill out the complicated pattern […]

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Increasing The Diversity of Life: The DOE’s Genome Project

The diversity of life on Earth is staggering to attempt to comprehend in its entirety. And the species that we are already aware of likely are but a fraction of the true multitude still to discover. This is especially so for the most numerous group in the kingdoms of life: bacteria. A Lack of Gene […]