Recreational Ancestry DNA May Reveal More than Consumers Bargained For

It all begins with spitting in a tube like this one. Scott Beale/Laughing Squid, CC BY-NC-ND More people are sending off saliva samples to find out about their genetic roots. But the raw DNA results go way beyond genealogical data – and could deliver unintended consequences. By Dr. Catherine Wang / 05.14.2018 Associate Professor of Community Health Sciences Boston University[…]

Genetic Home Testing: Not Such a Great Guide to Ancestry or Disease Risk

Shutterstock Most people will be much better off putting the money spent on a genetic test towards a gym membership, or a pair of trainers. By Dr. Jonathan Pettitt / 08.08.2017 Reader in Genetics University of Aberdeen Genetic variation is an unavoidable feature of life. As a consequence of this – and unless you are an identical twin – you are genetically unique. You[…]

How Yersinia Pestis Evolved Its Ability to Kill Millions via Pneumonic Plague

How did Yersinia pestis bacteria start to target the lungs and become so deadly? National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, CC BY It’s a deadly bacterium that can spread like wildfire. New research suggests Yersinia pestisfirst developed its ability to cause lung infection and then evolved to be highly infectious.    By Dr. Daniel Zimbler (left) and Dr. Wyndham Lathem (right) / 06.30.2015 Zimbler: Senior Scientist, Microbiology[…]

Fossil Evidence Reveals that Cancer in Humans Goes Back 1.7 Million Years

The earliest hominin cancer. Patrick Randolph-Quinney (University of Central Lancashire/University of the Witwatersrand) Cancer is not the modern disease many believe it to be. New fossil evidence from two South African caves suggests that its origins lie deep in prehistory.    By Dr. Patrick Randolph-Quinney (left) and Dr. Edward John Odes (right) / 09.12.2016 Randolph-Quinney: Reader/Associate Professor in Biological and Forensic Anthropology, University of Central Lancashire Odes: Postdoctoral Researcher, Bone Pathology[…]