Scientists snap a picture of DNA’s double helix for the very first time For the last 60 years, scientists have known that DNA's structure is composed of a spiraling corkscrew. They know this thanks to molecular theory and and an old-time technique called X-ray crystallography, where patterns of dots are converted into an overarching image using mathematics. But now, using an electron microscope, scientists have taken a highly vivid snapshot of a tightly packed bundle of DNA — perhaps the best glimpse yet of this life-giving molecule. Addendum: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that a single strand of DNA had been imaged — including its characteristic double-helix.
Pulp science fiction — in this case, meaning both serial magazines and stories and films which emphasized action, adventure, and plot at the expense of character and aspirations to Art — has been popular in Germany from the beginning. While never the most popular genre — mysteries and action/adventure were #1 and #2 — science fiction was consistently popular with the German pulp-reading public. From 1901, when the first German SF pulp called appeared, to 1926, when the situation for German pulp publishers changed permanently for the worse, pulp science fiction consistently appeared in Germany. Pulp Science Fiction Under German Totalitarianism
Pulp Science Fiction Under German Totalitarianism
SExpand The Earth is 4.5 billion years old, and life began oozing across its boiling, methane-saturated surface about a billion years after our planet was born. But how did that happen? In just a few billion years, a hellish ball of melted rock, smashed up by meteorites, became the gorgeous Blue Marble covered in plants, animals, and sparkling ocean waters we know today. Here's our list of ten books you must read if you want to understand this transformation, from the rise of oxygen in the atmosphere to the mass deaths of the dinosaurs. Illustration by Doug Henderson. The 10 Books You Absolutely Must Read to Understand the History of Earth
The 10 Books You Absolutely Must Read to Understand the History of Earth
Thursday 26th July saw the launch of SciLogs.com, a new English language science blog network. SciLogs.com, the brand-new home for Nature Network bloggers, forms part of the SciLogs international collection of blogs which already exist in German, Spanish and Dutch. To celebrate this addition to the NPG science blogging family, some of the NPG blogs are publishing posts focusing on “Beginnings”. Participating in this cross-network blogging festival is nature.com’s Soapbox Science blog, Scitable’s Student Voices blog and bloggers from SciLogs.com, SciLogs.de, Scitable and Scientific American’s Blog Network. Join us as we explore the diverse interpretations of beginnings – from scientific examples such as stem cells to first time experiences such as publishing your first paper. You can also follow and contribute to the conversations on social media by using the #BeginScights hashtag. The origin of breathing: how bacteria learnt to use oxygen | Lab Rat
Dolly the sheep comes to mind when we think of cloned animals. She was made famous as the "cloned sheep" made in the 1990s. But Dolly was a century late when it came to cloning. The first animal ever cloned was in the 1800s. Hear a tale of cloned animals, scientific discovery, and baby hair. The first cloned animals were cloned over a century ago
This post is written in a font made of DNA : Not Exactly Rocket Science
Ten Things You Probably Didn't Know About DNA "One of the most commonly created forms of synthetic DNA is XNA," I need to make a correction here: I've read the Pinheiro paper. XNA is not one particular molecule, it's a collection of different types where "X" is "fill in the blank for a replacement for deoxyribose." Also, don't oversell it: they're making aptamers, not introducing it into organisms and watching it evolve free of human tinkering.
XNA is synthetic DNA that's stronger than the real thing But scientists have been synthesizing XNA molecules for well over a decade. Your link appears not to be a link, but certainly PNAs (peptide nucleic acids - not really nucleic acids, but still ...) and GNAs (glycol nucleic acids) have been documented since the early '90s, so, yes, considerably more than a decade. "Overall, this leads to high cost and a high failure rate for potential therapies - there is still only a single licenced [nucleic acid-based] drug on the market (Macugen)."
Mark Gasson had caught a bad bug. Though he was not in pain, he was keenly aware of the infection raging in his left hand, knowing he could put others at risk by simply coming too close. But his virus wasn’t a risk for humans. Could Human and Computer Viruses Merge, Leaving Both Realms Vulnerable?
Image by Flickr user quinn.anya Nature, for all of its free-wheeling weeds and lightning strikes, is also full of biological regularity: the rows of an alligator’s teeth, the stripes on a zebrafish, the spacing of a chicken’s feathers. How do these patterns arise? Alan Turing's 60-Year-Old Prediction About Patterns in Nature Proven True | Surprising Science
Great project. Reminds me of the Douglas Adams book "Last Chance to See", about travelling all over the word to get a glimpse of various extremely endangered species, about which he wrote movingly and as wittily as he always wrote. You remind us with this article that your photographs and journey may also be many people's "last chance to see" some of these Oldest Living Things, because although they seem a permanent fixture of the world, they're still ephemeral, and we humans don't know whether the last day of even their natural lifespan might be tomorrow. I hope you're considering eventually publishing your gorgeous photographs, with information and commentary, as a book. The Oldest Living Trees in the World
The recent Nature paper from Jef Boeke’s group, “Synthetic chromosome arms function in yeast and generate phenotypic diversity by design,” begins with an appropriately futuristic sentence: “The first phase of any genome engineering project is design.” While there have been efforts to redesign viral genomes and chemically synthesize bacterial genomes, whole genomes of living cells are not yet something that can readily be designed from scratch. This new paper (excellently reviewed by Lab Rat a while back) approaches the design of genomes in a fascinating way; instead of trying to decide in advance what a good engineered/engineerable genome looks like or simply copying an existing genome, they designed the sequence of one arm of a yeast chromosome (about 90,000 base pairs) with built-in genetic flexibility, enabling future experiments and future evolution. Diversity by Design | Oscillator
Editor's note: This essay, by renowned evolutionary biologist Lynn Margulis, was published in the August 1994 issue of Scientific American with the title, "Sex, Death and Kefir." Margulis died on Tuesday in her home, according to a statement released by the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, where she was a Distinguished University Professor of Geosciences. She is best known for her work on how symbiosis led to the evolution of organelles, which were once independent organisms (she describes her theory in her August 1971 Scientific American article "Symbiosis and Evolution" (pdf), which you can read if your library has an institutional subscription). She was also a major contributor to the Gaia theory, which posits that Earth is a self-regulating complex system, and was once married to astronomer Carl Sagan. Sex, Death and Kefir Did Sex Emerge from Cannibalism? Sex, Death and Kefir, by Lynn Margulis (1938–2011)
Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2012 August 21 DNA: The Molecule that Defines You Animation Credit & Copyright: Drew Berry, WEHI, HHMI, DNALC 2012 August 21 - DNA: The Molecule that Defines You
Molecular Visualizations of DNA - Original High Quality Version
Longevity Shown for First Time to Be Inherited via a Non-DNA Mechanism In October 2009 Stanford University geneticist Anne Brunet was sitting in her office when graduate student Eric Greer came to her with a slightly heretical question. Brunet's lab had recently learned that they could lengthen a worm's lifetime by manipulating levels of an enzyme called SET2. "What if extending a worm's lifetime using SET2 can affect the life span of its descendants, even if the descendants have normal amounts of the enzyme?" he asked. The question was unorthodox, Brunet says, "because it touches upon the Lamarckian idea that you can inherit acquired traits, which biologists have believed false for years." The biologist Jean-Baptiste Lamarck theorized in 1809 that the traits exhibited by an organism during its lifetime were augmented in its offspring; a giraffe that regularly stretched its neck to eat would father calves whose necks were longer.
Lions and Tigers Bear Vocal Cords for Roars: Scientific American Podcast Evolution::60-Second Science::November 2, 2011:: ::Email::Print Most animal vocal cords are triangular, but the uniquely stretchable square cords of the big cats let them produce their amazingly loud roars. Rose Eveleth reports For many potential entrée animals this [sound of lion roar] is one of the scariest sounds around.
Stunning Images Under the Microscope Capture the Lives of the Tiniest Creatures [Slide Show]
Evolution: The Rise of Complexity | Science Sushi
New Magnetic Bacteria! | Lab Rat
Greg Dunn | Visual Art | Neuroscience Art | Gold Leaf Painting
Microbes generate electricity while cleaning up nuclear waste
Lennart Nilsson Photography
Pictures of the day: 1 December 2011
Evolution World Tour: Galápagos Islands, Ecuador | Evotourism
Before DNA, before RNA: Life in the hodge-podge world - life - 08 January 2012
How I became we, which became I again | Not Exactly Rocket Science
Mammals Made By Viruses | The Loom
DNA Barcoding Goes Mainstream | Wired Science
8 Things You Won't Believe Plants Do When No One's Looking
VI. EVOLUTION GOING ON
Alan Turing's Patterns in Nature, and Beyond | Wired Science
Mini Motion: Award-Winning Microscope Videos | Wired Science
Meet the ancestor of all living things on Earth
Can a venus flytrap digest human flesh?
Timeline: The evolution of life - life - 14 July 2009
Behold, the future's bioluminescent billboards
Biological clock began ticking 2.5 billion years ago - life - 16 May 2012
Drew Berry: Animations of unseeable biology
Meet the molecule responsible for giving Earth all of its oxygen
Blonde hair evolved independently in Pacific islands - life - 03 May 2012
Watch this team of scientists make a lion roar. Oh, and did I mention the lion is dead?
A plausible end-of-the-world scenario you've probably never thought of
Why Albino Animals Aren't Always White (And Non-Albino Animals Are)
Why we evolved two nostrils (hint: it's all about domination)
For the first time in 75 years, an entire genus of mammal is on the brink of extinction
Whoa, a Petri Dish That Has a Pulse
A Microbe Metropolis
Nature Under Glass: Gallery of Victorian Microscope Slides | History of Science & Scientific Imagery
Life began with a planetary mega-organism - life - 25 November 2011
FAQ: What's reproductive cloning? | How does reproductive cloning work? | LiveScience
Is it possible to reanimate the dead? Can dead people be brought back to life? | LiveScience
Anti-Gravity Machine for Levitating Fruit Flies
Animals Shrink as Earth Warms | Global Warming & Temperature | Climate Change & Animal Body Size
Life on Earth began in . . . Greenland!?
Ancient Plants Resurrected from Siberian Permafrost | Silene Dtenophylla & Siberian Tundra | Oldest Regeneration of a Living Plant & Zombie Plants
Scientists confirm Alan Turing's 60-year-old theory for why tigers have stripes
Zoology & Animal behaviour