"It is true, and thus the question of whether it is sad or happy has no meaning whatever."
Bernhard Schlink

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Thursday, May 27, 2004

Gene Sharing 

Chimpanzees are humans' closest relatives, sharing all but about 1.5% of our genes. However, a new study indicates that this tiny difference in fact has much broader phenotypic effects: deletions and insertions can have big effects on proteins, and thus everything else. It's still not clear if this is where we'll find the important differences that make us human and not chimps, though. They may have to look at an evolutionary intermediate for that: perhaps this guy?

A group of European researchers have found that bacteria apparently 'steal' some of their hosts genes to counteract immune attacks. This is a pretty cool concept, and I can't wait to hear more about it! The gene has since been passed along amongst many different bacteria.

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