Howard Hughes Medical Institute researchers are moving closer to understanding how the global pattern of the skeleton of mammals is formed during development. In an exceptionally demanding series of experiments, the researchers knocked out entire sets of two families of genes suspected in playing a central role in establishing the pattern of the skeleton in the mammalian embryo.
Their findings regarding the "paralogous" gene families known as Hox10 and Hox11 establish that the genes play important roles in orchestrating the construction of the ribs, spine and limb bones. Paralogous genes are sets of genes that have overlapping function. They arose during evolution through gene duplication.
The studies on Hox10 and Hox11 were published in the July 18, 2003, issue of the journal Science by HHMI investigator Mario R. Capecchi and colleague Deneen M. Wellik, who are both at the University of Utah.
Jim Keeley | EurekAlert!
Single-stranded DNA and RNA origami go live
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DNA molecules that follow specific instructions could offer more precise molecular control of synthetic chemical systems, a discovery that opens the door for engineers to create molecular machines with new and complex behaviors.
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MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.
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Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.
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The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.
Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...
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