Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Comparing Chimp and Human DNA

13.10.2006
Scientists look to the chimpanzee genome to better understand what is uniquely human about our own. One goal is to find DNA elements that show evidence of rapid evolution in the human lineage.

In a new study, published online in the open-access journal PLoS Genetics, Katherine Pollard, at the UC Davis Genome Center, and colleagues at UC Santa Cruz led by David Haussler used comparative genomics to investigate the properties of a set of 202 carefully screened “highly accelerated regions” (HARs).

The authors searched for stretches of DNA that were highly conserved between chimpanzees, mice, and rats, comparing those sequences to the human genome sequence in order to unravel the evolutionary forces at work behind the human genome’s fastest evolving regions.

Pollard explains that “most of the differences between chimps and humans are not in our proteins, but in how we use them.” Only three HARs lie in genes that are likely to encode proteins. The rest do not appear to code for genes at all; instead, many HARs are located close to genes involved in growth and development. The most dramatically accelerated region, HAR1, appears to make a piece of RNA that may have a function in brain development.

... more about:
»DNA »HARs »genes

“They’re not in genes, but they’re near genes that do some very important stuff,” Pollard said. Typically, non-coding regions of DNA evolve more rapidly than regions carrying genes because there is no selective pressure to stop mutations from accumulating. However, the human-accelerated regions are highly conserved across the other groups of animals that the researchers examined, suggesting that they have important functions that stop them from varying too much.

This study was funded by the National Institutes of Health and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

Katherine Pollard | alfa
Further information:
http://www.plosgenetics.org
http://www.ucdavis.edu

Further reports about: DNA HARs genes

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht BigH1 -- The key histone for male fertility
14.12.2017 | Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona)

nachricht Guardians of the Gate
14.12.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Biochemie

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.

Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...

Im Focus: Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

Detailed calculations show water cloaks are feasible with today's technology

Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

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.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

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...

Im Focus: Successful Mechanical Testing of Nanowires

With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong

Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Plasmonic biosensors enable development of new easy-to-use health tests

14.12.2017 | Health and Medicine

New type of smart windows use liquid to switch from clear to reflective

14.12.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

BigH1 -- The key histone for male fertility

14.12.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>