An article published in the journal “Nature Ecology & Evolution” describes a genetic research on wild and domestic, ancient and modern cats. A team of researchers from the Belgian University of Leuven and the Belgian Royal Institute of Natural Sciences led by the paleogeneticist Claudio Ottoni analyzed the DNA of over 200 cats found in archaeological sites in the Near East, Africa and Europe with an age between 100 and 9,000 years to conclude that they were domesticated in two main waves in the Near East and Egypt.
Blogs about biology
An article published in the journal “eLife” describes a genetic analysis on elephants based on genetic analysis of the three existing species and the straight-tusked elephant (Palaeoloxodon antiquus), which is extinct but sampling of DNA from its bones was accomplished. A team of researchers led by Matthias Meyer of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, proposes a new family tree for elephants different from the one currently used.
An article published in the journal “Nature Communications” describes a research showing a possible genetic mechanism that determined the evolution of birds from dinosaurs. A team of researchers from the Japanese Tohoku University that includes international collaborators provided what the scientists believe are evidence of the connection of certain genetic sequences to the evolution of bird traits such as feathers.
An article published in the journal “Science” describes the identification of a new group of giant viruses that were called Klosneuviruses. A team of researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (DOE JGI) and the University of Vienna believe that they evolved from normal-sized viruses acquiring genes from their host organisms growing abnormally for viruses.
An article published in the journal “Nature Ecology & Evolution” offers an answer to the arguments about the most ancient group of animals appeared on Earth. According to a team of evolutionary biologists at Vanderbilt University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison ctenophores were the first animals and not sponges, as many believe. This conclusion was reached by comparing a set of genes of 18 branches of the living beings’ family tree using 6 of animals, plants and fungi as a control branches.