Debunking some misconceptions about evolution

Sometimes, it’s good to remember that even evolution doesn’t want you to be perfect. Good enough is just fine.

Scientists catch human evolution in the making

Gene variants linked to Alzheimer’s or heavy smoking are being gradually weeded out by natural selection.

Second gene-silencing mechanism found, could lead to viable clones and safer in vitro

It’s gotta be pretty important if it has a back-up system in place.

Older fathers tend to raise geekier children

Age matters!

Major study explored the biology of human intelligence and found 40 new genes that play a role

What shall we do with this information?

Early farmers probably didn’t really know how to select crops — but they were very lucky

Domestication could’ve well happened on its own.

If you like having sex, you should thank pathogens for making it possible


We pick our mates by their genome — even if we aren’t aware of it

Humans too engage in assortative mating, scientists find.

Chromosomes turn out to be half genes, half mysterious coating

That’s a lot of coat.

Gene variant that makes people less inclined to drink alcohol might help treat addiction

Genetic influence on drinking is real.

‘Java genes’ explain why coffee doesn’t work for some people

If coffee doesn’t work for you, you might have different genes from everyone else.

Some parasitic plants can steal genes then use them against their hosts

That’s not very nice.

Interbreeding with Neanderthals gave us some good genes, but also diseases

We’re still finding the fruits of this interspecies love affair.

New paper finds WO virus has stolen the Black Widow’s venom gene

One of the most successful bacteria species on Earth is now hunted by venom-wielding-viruses.

Modern humans lost some of their smoke-resistance genes and we don’t know why

So remember, don’t smoke kids.

Five genes could give dogs their unique human interaction — and they share four with us


Zombie genes are turned on even days after an organism dies

Even days after we die, gene expression is still active.

We’ve found the genetic key to making red blood cells

Researchers from Lund University in Sweden and the Center of Regenerative Medicine in Barcelona have identified four sequences of genetic code that can reprogram mice skin cells to produce red blood cells. If this method can be used on human tissues, it would provide a reliable source of blood for transfusions and people with anemia.

Neanderthal and Human interbreeding couldn’t produce male babies

People of European descent carry as much as 4 percent Neanderthal DNA, but the Y chromosome passed down from father to sons is entirely missing in the modern population. Scientists now think they know why.

Being a morning person might be coded in your genes

Some people have no trouble rising early and being productive, while others are most active during the evenings. This begs the question: are morning persons and night owls set apart by habit or biology? Habits certainly play a leading role, but all things being equal your genes might have a strong word to say in the matter.