Coelacanth genome sequenced

by Greg Mayer Coelacanths are one of the three surviving groups of sarcopterygian (lobe-finned) fishes, and along with lungfish, one of the two groups that have remained fish in the vernacular sense (we tetrapods, the third surviving group, have of course become legged). The coelacanths also have a tremendous back story: known in the fossil […]

Neanderthals are us?

by Greg Mayer At least since Socrates explored the meaning of the Greek maxim “Know thyself”, and Alexander Pope added that “the proper study of Mankind is Man”, we have been interested in knowledge about ourselves. But who are we? A paper in press in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by Ron […]

US government opposes gene patenting

by Greg Mayer In a move that got lost in the run up to the recent US elections, the Federal government has reversed its longstanding policy that genes are patentable. Released the Friday before the elections, and covered by the New York Times the following day, with a follow up article the day before the […]

The human genome ten years on (part 2) – it ain’t necessarily so

by Greg Mayer In a post a couple of months ago, Matthew took note of the tenth anniversary of the completion of the draft human genome, noting that Nature had published a retrospective.  Matthew rightfully took issue with the dreadful “blueprint” metaphor for the genome, but also concisely noted the meager medical results: …despite all […]