In a series of landmark papers to appear in journals including PLoS Biology and Insect Molecular Biology, the scientists shed light on the identity of an organism whose genome sequence offers solutions to central questions in basic biology and applied agriculture.
Both a highly destructive pest and highly complex organism, the aphid is known for the damage it causes to crops, feeding on the phloem sap in plants and spreading deadly viruses. Yet aphids have also evolved complex life cycles, alternating between sexual and asexual reproduction, producing offspring with multiple phenotypes and forming symbiotic relationships with inherited bacteria.
Many of these unusual features find their origins in the 35,000 newly-identified genes of the pea aphid genome, 37% of which, the researchers show, are unique to aphids. Among other discoveries, the researchers find a highly increased number of genes associated with reproduction, gene expression, signaling and virus transmission, and a strikingly reduced repertoire of immunity-related genes. At the evolutionary level, the discovery of a dozen functional genes of bacterial origin constitutes the first systematic evidence of horizontal gene transfer from bacteria to a eukaryotic host.
As the world’s most important agricultural pest and one of its most biologically distinctive species, the aphid is of central concern to industry and science alike. The first published aphid genome provides a basis for the development of safer, more effective pest control techniques, while also setting the stage to exploring the genetic basis of a range of complex biological phenomena.
For more information, please contact:Dr. Atsushi Nakabachi
Repairing damaged hearts with self-healing heart cells
22.08.2017 | National University Health System
Biochemical 'fingerprints' reveal diabetes progression
22.08.2017 | Umea University
Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.
As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...
Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...
For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.
While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...
An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.
The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...
A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...
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