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Genomics and Cell Biology: August 2016


Often described as the blueprint of life, DNA contains the instructions for making every living thing from a human to a house fly. But in recent decades, some researchers have been putting the letters of the genetic code to a different use: making tiny nanoscale computers.

A new study provides insight into base pair bonding in artificial DNA polymerase. Researchers focused on a previously unknown base pair: iso-guanine and methyl-pyrimidinone.

The number of microbes in, on, and around the planet - on the order of a nonillion, or 10^30 - is estimated to outnumber the stars in the Milky Way.

Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) have taken a big step toward the laboratory re-creation of the "RNA world," which is generally believed to have preceded modern life forms based on DNA and proteins.

The relatively recent development of high-throughput sequencing (HTS) techniques has revealed a wealth of novel sequences found in very low abundance: the rare biosphere.

Multicellularity--the integration of previously autonomous cells into a new, more complex organism--is one of the major transitions in evolution.

A new study could explain why DNA and not RNA, its older chemical cousin, is the main repository of genetic information.